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Cultural policy

The government’s cultural policy is based on the principle that art and culture have unique intrinsic value for individuals. The role of art is to comment, reflect, criticise and challenge. Art and culture expand our understanding of ourselves and the society in which we live.

Although the government will maintain strong public investment in the cultural budget in the years ahead, a concurrent objective is to increase the volume of private donations to the cultural sector even further. This will give the cultural sector greater stability.

The Ministry of Culture’s responsibilities

The Ministry of Culture is responsible for the development of national cultural policy through legal and financial instruments. National funding for art and culture is primarily allocated via the Ministry’s budget. The majority of the Ministry’s artistic and cultural allocations are made to institutions that receive fixed annual operating grants. These institutions have substantial decision-making autonomy, and are restricted only by their specified objectives and general guidelines laid down by the Storting (the Norwegian parliament) and the government.

The cultural policy decision-making apparatus includes various organisations tasked with administering funds that are to be distributed to third parties in accordance with artistic and cultural assessments. The largest of these is the Arts Council Norway.