Across Europe, policymakers regularly question the value of culture and, increasingly, seek the answer in culture’s social and economic impact. As a result of this the culture sector often is expected to meet new aims. In the essay Revaluing Culture the Netherlands’ Scientific Council for Government Policy (WRR) argues that cultural policy should be first and foremost directed towards the ‘culture’ part of cultural policy. Only a strong culture sector is of lasting value to Dutch society, and to achieve it, policymakers must see to strengthen the resilience of the culture sector, so that it can deal with rapidly changing consumer preferences, buffer the consequences of new funding models, and rethink the relation between creative education and the labour market.
The essay is based on the first chapter of the report Cultuur herwaarderen. This report is edited by Erik Schrijvers, Anne-Greet Keizer and Godfried Engbersen; it features contributions by Hasan Bakhshi, Dave O’Brien, Roberta Comunian, Koen van Eijck, and Robert C. Kloosterman. The Dutch minister of Culture, Jet Bussemaker, has responded positively to this report and adjusted the policy aims accordingly in her policy plans for the comings years, Starting points for 2017-2020.