The European Union and culture

The European Union and culture: Between economic regulation and European cultural policy

Annabelle Littoz-Monnet
Copyright Date: 2007
Pages: 200
  • Cite this Item
  • Book Info
    The European Union and culture
    Book Description:

    The European Union and culture explains why and how the European Union has started to intervene in the cultural policy sector – understood here as the public policies aimed at supporting and regulating the arts and cultural industries. It is the first comprehensive and theoretically informed account of the Communitarisation process of the cultural policy sector. Before 1992, no legal basis for EU intervention in the field of culture appeared in the Treaties. Member states were, in any case, reluctant to share their competences in a policy sector considered to be an area of national sovereignty. In such circumstances, how was the Communitarisation of the policy sector ever possible? Who were the policy actors that played a role in this process? What were their motives? And why were certain actors more influential than others? This book will be of great use to all researchers and students of European integration and European public policy.

    eISBN: 978-1-84779-221-1
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-v)
  3. Acknowledgements
    (pp. vi-vi)
  4. List of abbreviations
    (pp. vii-viii)
  5. 1 Cultural policy as a contested area
    (pp. 1-19)

    The trajectory of Communitarisation, the process by which European level policies are developed and the sector’s governance (at least in terms of policy-making) takes place in Brussels, varies significantly across policy sectors. Most EU policies found a basis in the Treaty of Rome. Yet some policy sectors were Communitarised in the absence of a Treaty basis for Community intervention. Community policies were created in the telecommunications and environment fields, for instance, although the original Treaty made no mention of a Community role in these sectors. In the same way, no formal competence on cultural policy appeared in the original Treaty¹...

  6. 2 Cultural policy at the heart of tensions between conflicting models of policy intervention
    (pp. 20-36)

    Culture is the field ‘par excellence’ where policy preferences are not only determined by institutional, political and economic interests, but also by policy ideas. Depending on how policy actors perceive a given policy problem, their views will also differ as to how the sector should be regulated. Thus, the Communitarisation process of the cultural sector was characterised by a competition between conflicting views of the problems at stake – which were expressed through the defence of conflicting models of public intervention. In the event, a coalition of actors conceiving culture as a mercantile activity opposed a competing coalition of stakeholders...

  7. 3 Cultural policy at the heart of tensions between governance levels
    (pp. 37-70)

    In 1957, when European states signed the Rome Treaty,¹ no mention was made of the cultural sector. By 1992, Article 128 of the Maastricht Treaty (now Article 151)² created a formal competence for EU intervention in the cultural field. How can this evolution be accounted for? Was it a linear process, which had already begun prior to the reform of the Maastricht Treaty? Or have Treaty reforms been the harbingers for major policy developments? Moreover, which policy actors can be considered to have played a substantial role in the development of a policy space that was not evoked in the...

  8. 4 The Communitarisation of broadcasting regulation: the ‘Television Without Frontiers’ Directive
    (pp. 71-100)

    The very nature of broadcasting, as both a commercial activity and a cultural product, created acute rivalries among policy actors desirous of imposing their own concerns on public political agendas. Broadcasting is also a policy sector closely associated with member states’ ‘sovereignty’, thus resulting in unwavering tensions between EU institutions’ propensity to intervene in the audio-visual field and member states’ reluctance to delegate their policy competencies to the EU level. Yet, the TWF Directive adopted in 1989 (89/552/EEC) and renewed in 1997 (97/36/EC)¹ can be considered to be the most comprehensive piece of legislation related to cultural policy issues enacted...

  9. 5 The Europeanisation of the regulation of book markets: fixed price systems for books in the EU
    (pp. 101-119)

    Although no European legislation on book prices has been adopted so far, it is reasonable to argue that the ECJ and the European Commission have been successful in Europeanising the policy area by making use of their judicial and regulatory powers. The ECJ and DG Competition within the European Commission indeed began examining the compatibility of member states’ legislation with competition rules as early as the 1980s. Acting far in advance of Treaty reforms, these institutions extended the remit of their competence to the area of book policy through the ‘economic back door’, as they did in the audio-visual sector....

  10. 6 The Communitarisation of copyright policies
    (pp. 120-150)

    The copyright¹ sector presents another extremely interesting case of Europeanisation – and subsequently, Communitarisation – in the cultural field. In the 1970s, national level policies in the copyright sector were challenged by international technological developments and European institutions’ policy entrepreneurship. In a similar fashion as in the book and audio-visual sectors, the ECJ and the European Commission intervened in a ‘hierarchical decision’ mode (Scharpf 2000), making use of their agenda-setting, regulatory and judicial powers. Five directives (three of which are examined in this chapter) were adopted as early as the 1980s and numerous judgements were passed by the ECJ long...

  11. 7 Conclusion
    (pp. 151-159)

    In the three issue areas examined comprehensively in the book, European intervention began with the application of the Rome Treaty principles. In the three cases, the ECJ and the ‘economic’ DGs of the Commission plainly attempted to portray cultural matters from an economic perspective, so that their intervention in new policy areas would become justifiable. Using the liberal image was in fact an efficient way to attack other policy jurisdictions and change the venue of decision-making. Private actors, at the subnational level, developed a similar strategy: they provoked the Europeanisation of the policy debate, the European venue being considered as...

  12. Appendices
    (pp. 160-164)
  13. Bibliography
    (pp. 165-180)
  14. Index
    (pp. 181-192)