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Regulatory Scope for Culture-related Support under European Structural and Investment Funds

Are We Moving Backwards?

Viktoriya Dozhdeva

This article provides an overview of the scope for ESIF support to culture-related investment, as provided for under the Cohesion policy regulatory framework, and its evolution over the 2007-13 and 2014-20 periods. It also reflects on the alignment (or lack thereof) of the scope for support to culture-related investment under ESIF provisions with the recent trends in European policy-making and academic debate on the role of culture in territorial development. It provides examples of interesting and innovative approaches to translating ESIF regulatory provisions on culture into domestic strategic frameworks, building on a more comprehensive understanding of the role of culture and creativity in territorial development, despite the arguably limiting treatment of culture in current ESIF regulations. The article argues for the need to incorporate and mainstream a broader understanding of the potential of culture in promoting territorial development, growth and cohesion and the pervasive nature of culture-related investment into future cycles of Cohesion policy programming, by including more explicit and comprehensive references to culture under ESIF regulatory provisions.

Viktoriya Dozhdeva is a Research Fellow at the European Policies Research Centre, University of Strathclyde. The author would like to thank Martin Ferry and Stefan Kah of EPRC for their contributions to the development of this article, and Rona Michie for her helpful comments on previous versions. The views expressed in this article are personal.


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