http://www.culturalpolicies.net/_grafics/logoprintbw.gif
Report creation date: 14.10.2008 - 10:15
Countr(y/ies): Estonia
Chapter(s): 1,2,21,22,23,24,241,242,243,244,245,246,3,31,32,33,4,41,42,421,422,423,424,425,426,427,428,429,4210,43,5,51,511,512,513,514,515,516,517,518,519,52,53,531,532,533,534,535,536,537,538,539,5310,6,61,62,63,64,7,71,72,73,8,81,811,812,813,82,821,822,83,831,832,84,841,842,9,91,92

Estonia/ 1. Historical perspective: cultural policies and instruments

During the 20th century, Estonia experienced several crises and arrived at several junctures in its development. These included the creation of an independent state in 1918, two occupations during the Second World War and the destruction of social structures by the Soviet régime. The forty-six year period of Soviet rule lasted from 1945 until independence in 1991. The new independence was preceded by a revolutionary period of four years. In cultural life and cultural policies, as well as in other fields of politics, a distancing from the stable patterns of post-totalitarianism began in 1988, when representatives of the cultural field voiced their views for the first time in public against the environmental and nationality problems created by Soviet rule. That year also marked the beginning of several organisational changes in the administration of cultural policy in Estonia (then still a Soviet republic). Formally divided between the Ministry of Cultural Affairs, the Committee of Cinematography, the Publishing Committee, and the Television and Radio Committee, cultural policy was regrouped under the responsibility of a Culture Committee, which was later renamed the Ministry of Culture in 1990. From 1993 to 1996, there was a single Ministry of Culture and Education, which has since then been separated intoTallín two individual ministries.

These organisational changes have accompanied important changes in the objectives and instruments of cultural policy. During the Soviet ancien régime, the state was both the main financier of most cultural activities, and an ideological, moral, and aesthetic censor. However, prior to the proclamation of Estonian independence in 1991, cultural policy had already taken steps towards privatisation and decentralisation of cultural life. In a way, privatisation had already started in 1987 when the first non-governmental publishing house was set up. Censorship of the media ceased officially in 1990, but had in fact been practically abolished by 1989.

The first years (1991-1995) of the new independence were characterised, above all, by the privatisation of many previously state-run cultural institutions and an overall change in the role of the state. During that period, almost all state-owned cultural institutions changed ownership and / or organisational form. Whether through privatisation or municipalisation, the new owner was generally obliged to continue the previous main functions of the institution for a certain period (mostly five years). The privatisation process has had the greatest impact on the fields of books and publishing, film and broadcasting, and cultural heritage (through a de-nationalisation process, many of the previously state-owned historical buildings were returned to their previous private owners or their heirs). The institutional structure of theatres, libraries, and museums has remained more or less intact or even expanded. Private organisations have taken over much of the concert life, which was previously dominated by state agencies.

In 1995-96, there was a relatively vivid public discussion on cultural policies, initiated and led by the Ministry of Culture and Education. The standpoint taken by the Ministry at the time was that the process of privatisation of cultural life had come to its end. A new feature in cultural policies was the establishment of various arm's length bodies, i.e. state-owned cultural foundations which received a fixed sum of money from the state budget. The most important of them, the Cultural Endowment of Estonia (Kultuurkapital), was founded in 1994 according to the model of a similar body that existed between 1925 and 1940. The foundations distribute grants for specific purposes, independently from the Ministry of Culture. The other main instruments of cultural policy are legislation, licensing, and distribution of budget resources.

Since the mid-1990s, a recurring theme in the debate on cultural policies has been the scheduled construction of several major cultural buildings. Of these construction projects, the Musical Academy, the restoration of the Department at Foreign Art of the Museum of Arts, and in 2005, the new building of the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art have already been completed. The reconstruction of the Estonia Theatre was completed in 2006. Although the architectural competition for the new building of the National Museum (hosting an ethnographic collection, to be located in Tartu) took place in 2006, the construction work has not yet been started. However, the Developmental Plans of the Ministry of Culture, adopted in 2006 and 2007 (see http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 4.1), explicitly stress that investment in human resources will be more highly prioritised than before, in contrast to the previous focus on infrastructure. A major task of cultural policy has continued to be the defence of the existing network of cultural institutions against budget cuts. The latest legislative change took place in November 2004, when an Act on Creative Artists and Creative Artists' Unions was passed in the Estonian Parliament (Riigikogu) (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.3.9).

An important milestone in the history of Estonia was the entry to the European Union on 1 May 2004.

Estonia/ 2. Competence, decision-making and administration

2.1 Organisational structure (organigram)

Administration of culture on different levels of government

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Organisation of the Ministry of Culture

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Estonia/ 2. Competence, decision-making and administration

2.2 Overall description of the system

Legislative power belongs to the Parliament (Riigikogu) who decides on:

A Parliamentary Cultural Committee, which has members from both the governing and opposition parties, and a Financial Committee respectively have the tasks of reviewing legislative proposals and setting the budgetary limits.

The Ministry of Culture is responsible for:

The state-run institutions offering arts and culture education are administered by the Ministry of Education, which accredits, grants licenses and sets the educational standards for all institutions including those which are independent or privately run.

Outside the Ministry of Culture, the main institution distributing state money for cultural purposes is the Cultural Endowment of Estonia. It was founded by the Parliament in 1994, based on the model of its predecessor originally established in 1921, but abolished by the Soviet authorities after Estonia's occupation in 1940. It receives a fixed share of alcohol, tobacco, and gambling duties and uses them for the benefit of culture and sports. The Endowment is divided between departments for Architecture, Film, Fine Arts, Theatre, Music, Literature, Folk Art, Sports, and Inter-disciplinary Culture. The Councils of the different departments are free to decide how to allocate their share of the resources and have adopted different practices in dividing the grants. In addition, a certain share of the money is distributed by the regional expert groups that work in every one of the 15 counties (maakonnad). Among the activities supported are studies, travels, specific projects, in the form of individual grants that are given four times per year. In addition, prizes for outstanding creative works have been given (from 2002, two prizes yearly), as well as additional pensions for retired artists. The Endowment's total budget for 2006 amounted to EEK 266.1 million (17.0 million euros). The Board of the Endowment is chaired by the Minister of Culture, but it lacks any other form of official subordination to the Ministry or to other political bodies. Another arm's length body is the Council for Gambling Taxes, which is, however, smaller. It distributes grants to other fields besides culture and does not have an elaborate administrative structure.

The Law on Local Self-Governance gives the 33 towns and 194 municipalities the responsibility for the educational and cultural needs of their inhabitants. They are, however, essentially dependent on support from the state budget, from which their main resource requirements are received as subsidies. The small financial resources of most towns and municipalities do not leave them much freedom in designing their own cultural policies. Plans to reform the system of local administration have been initiated and discussed actively in the public sphere. This reform would, among other things, include a decrease in the number of local governments and a corresponding growth of their average size (at present, their number is 227 118 of which have less than 2 000 inhabitants). Hopefully, that would enhance the functioning capacity of the remaining municipalities. It has also aroused opposition as it would lead to some of the municipal services to be geographically located further away from the smallest localities.

There are 15 counties (maakonnad) which are representatives of the state in different regions. Their primary function is to control the work of the local self-governments. The 15 county museums are governed by the county governments.

During the 1990s there were clear trends towards privatisation, decentralisation, and the use of arm's length bodies. On the state level, decision-making in cultural policy has remained relatively centralised within the Ministry of Culture. Parliament has not played an active role here; on the other hand, the local governments' share of cultural expenses amounted to over 35.6% of the total public expenditure on culture in 2005. The institutional structure of cultural life has remained quite heavy, which leaves little room for new initiatives. The Cultural Endowment of Estonia was originally designed as a channel for supporting separate cultural projects. However, starting from 2002, the Endowment also financed the construction works of the Art Museum of Estonia (Kumu) and the National Museum. In practice, it has also participated in the financing of regular activities by established cultural institutions and the pressure for doing so is continuing, maybe even growing.

Estonia/ 2. Competence, decision-making and administration

2.3 Inter-ministerial or intergovernmental co-operation

Although the educational institutions offering cultural programmes are governed by the Ministry of Education, there is co-operation with the Ministry of Culture. Other areas of co-operation between the two ministries include language politics and a recently initiated programme to reconstruct schools located in historically valuable manor buildings. Along with other regional programmes, the latter has also involved municipalities in the co-operation both as financiers, and beneficiaries. Other fields of inter-ministerial co-operation include copyright issues and broadcasting in which the Ministries of the Interior, Economy, and Finances are involved. A new field of research that has emerged in 2004-2006 is concerned with the creative industries. A report on design was launched in 2004, by the Ministry of Economics and Communication, and it has been followed by the creation of a working group on the culture industries at the Ministry of Culture, with participation from different experts and stakeholders (see alsohttp://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gif chapter 4.2.6).

The creation of Estonian cultural institutes in Finland, Sweden, France, and Hungary has involved co-operation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Both ministries are involved in preparing and implementing such international agreements on cultural co-operation, as well as with the EU and the Council of Europe. The Ministry of Culture has cultural attachés in Brussels and since 2003, in Berlin. These representatives are chosen in agreement with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and they work in the embassy buildings. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is kept up to date on events that are organised for the presentation of Estonian culture abroad.

The Ministry of Justice is consulted when draft legislation is being prepared. The recent organisation of the Eurovision Song Contest in Tallinn created a situation in which co-operation between ministries and different levels of government were tested in practice.

In general, the Ministry of Culture seems to be aware of a need to enhance the contacts between ministries and the different levels of government.

Estonia/ 2.4 International cultural co-operation

2.4.1 Overview of main structures and trends

Most networks of international cultural cooperation and political cooperation are still a relatively new field and have opened up to Estonia only after national independence in 1991. There are two main aims of international cultural co-operation: to bring international cultural life to Estonia and to introduce Estonian culture abroad. Estonia's cultural co-operation with the EU started well before the country's membership in May 2004. Since accession, new dimensions, and instruments have been added. Estonia is a member and an active participant in the main international organisations responsible for the field of culture, such as UNESCO, the Council of Europe, WIPO, ICOM, and Eurimages and has joined several international networks. In May 2007, Estonia received an invitation to join OECD, together with Slovenia and Russia.

One of the main instruments of international cultural co-operation is bi- and multilateral agreements and cultural co-operation programmes. The implementation of these agreements should, in principle, be financed from the state budget. As of July 2007, Estonia had signed 46 agreements on cultural co-operation with foreign countries. Negotiations with several other countries are ongoing. In addition to these agreements, the Ministry has concluded more detailed protocols, or initiated co-operation programmes, with some of the countries.

While projects listed in international agreements are to gain priority in decisions on financing, it can happen that agreements on cultural co-operation are sometimes signed without prior calculations of their financial costs. This puts great strain on the cultural budget and may render their implementation more difficult. Obviously, long-term planning is needed in order to make ends meet.

Estonia/ 2.4 International cultural co-operation

2.4.2 Public actors and cultural diplomacy

In terms of the EU, the task of the Ministry of Culture is to co-ordinate participation in the decision-making processes on issues of pan-European cultural co-operation, audiovisual policy, cultural heritage and copyright. The Ministry is directly responsible to prepare Estonia's participation in the EU cultural and media programmes, to train programme co-ordinators in co-operation with the Estonian Bureau of European Integration, and to advise those wishing to apply for project funding from the EU programmes. In general, Estonian co-operation with European institutions has been developing since the late 1990s. For example, participation in the EU cultural programmes Raphael, Kaleidoscope, and Ariane, was opened to Estonians. 2001 marked the first year when Estonians could participate in the Culture 2000 programme. During the period 2001-2003, Estonian cultural projects received approximately 100 000 euros from the Culture 2000 programme. Estonian cultural organisations participated as both project leaders and co-operation partners in the successful bids.

2004 Estonia joined Eurimages, a European fund to support film production; Estonia also participates in other European media programmes, such as Media Plus, Media Training, Minerva, the Audiovisual Observatory. As a result of these programmes, Estonia has supported the establishment of the Baltic Media School at Tallinn University (see http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.3).

Estonia continues to participate in the regional co-operation programme Ars Baltica with the countries surrounding the Baltic Sea. Some instruments facilitating official co-operation among the three Baltic countries - Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania - are: the biennial Conference of Ministers of the Baltic Sea Region; the Cultural Committee of the Council of Ministers of the Baltic Countries; and regular meetings between the Ministers of Culture. One example of a concrete co-operation project among the three countries is the jointly financed Kremerata Baltica, a concert music ensemble consisting of young musicians from all three countries.

In addition to the work of the Ministry of Culture, the main institutional network presenting Estonian culture abroad is the Estonian Institute, established in 1989 initially as an NGO, but now financed mainly by the state. The Estonian Institute has four offices located in Helsinki, Budapest, Stockholm, and Paris. The presentation of Estonian culture abroad has been greatly extended and a specific programme for music has been created. Support is also provided for Estonian participation in international art exhibitions (e.g. the Venice Biennial) and in film co-productions. It has been estimated that Estonian NGOs participate in the work of around 100 international cultural networks.

The role of foreign cultural institutes has been an active one in Estonia. Although the principal financer of traditional art forms continues to be the state, the means for newer art forms such as contemporary art and contemporary dance, as well as electronic music for organizing festivals and supporting foreign performers, is often provided by foreign cultural institutes and private funds. The Goethe Institute, British Council and Nordic Council of Ministers have been visible financing bodies in supporting the local cultural scene in Estonia.

Estonia/ 2.4 International cultural co-operation

2.4.3 European / international actors and programmes

After Estonia joined the EU, multilateral cultural cooperation between member states as well as on the international level has grown, but systematic research on the impacts of these networks is not yet available.

In 2006, the Ministry of Culture joined the International Network on Cultural Policy and the CULTURELINK network. During recent years, Estonia has joined networks of cultural cooperation at the European level, such as ELIA (The European League of Institutes of the Arts) and EIPCP (the European Institute for Progressive Cultural Policies); and on the international level - ICCM (the International Centre of Culture and Management) and IFACCA (the International Federation of Arts Councils and Culture Agencies).

The UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions is implemented and monitored by the Cultural Heritage Department of the Tallinn City Government.

In March 2006, Tallinn was elected as the European Capital of Culture for 2011; and collaborations have already started with Turku, the co-nominated Finnish city for the same year.

Estonia/ 2.4 International cultural co-operation

2.4.4 Direct professional co-operation

In 2002, the Eurovision Song Contest was hosted by the Estonian Television, the organising of which required international co-operation on a large scale. More recently, Estonian culture received international recognition when the Estonian (and Latvian) song and dance festival tradition as well as the cultural space of the island Kihnu, were included on UNESCO's World List of oral and intangible heritage.

There are seven major dance festivals in Estonia, two of which are international. The yearly contemporary dance festival "August Dance Festival" is organised by the NGO Second Dance. Whereas in 2005 the state supported the organisation with 20 000 EEK, the ticket sales provided 90 000 EEK. As an artform, contemporary dance is lacking permanent financial state support and continues to be financed on a project basis, following the model for financing theatre.

The cooperation between Baltic States has been growing during the past years in several art fields. For instance, several summer workshops were organised in 2007 in a collaboration of the Centres for Contemporary Art in Riga, Tallinn, and Vilnius, in preparation for the Young Artists´ Biennial (http://www.biennaleofyoungartists.org), to be held in Tallinn from September to November, 2007.

Estonia/ 2.4 International cultural co-operation

2.4.5 Cross-border intercultural dialogue and co-operation

In promoting trans-national intercultural dialogue, foreign embassies and foreign cultural institutes (see http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 2.4.3), based in Estonia, have played an active role. Non-governmental organisations (NGOs), with links to ethnic minorities and Diaspora communities, usually receive modest, but regular support from the state and the municipalities.

Addressing the youth, as a target group of governmental cultural policy, is a relatively recent initiative, since, traditionally, funding and organizing leisure time schools, as well as cultural and leisure clubs, have been the responsibility of local governments. However, during the last years, the Culture Ministry has become more actively involved in designing the leisure time of young people and initiating new projects in this field. In 2005, the programmes of the Year of Art concentrated, especially, on the educative role of art, trying to engage new youth audiences for the art institutions.

Since 1998, Estonia has been a part of the European Union programme European Youth, designed for international cooperation between groups of young people between 18 and 25, which has been very popular.

The Nordic poetry festival started in 2001 and takes place every year. The seven poetry festivals organised so far have introduced not only Nordic (i.e., Danish, Finnish, Icelandic, Norwegian, Swedish, Greenland, Faroese, and Aaland Islands), but also Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian and Russian writers. The Festival is organised by the Nordic Council of Ministers (NCM) in Tallinn, Estonia. Its website is available at http://norden.ee/poetry/2007. In September 2007, an Estonian delegation was invited to the Göteborg Book Fair as the main guest of the event. The event was held alongside the Foreign Estonian Cultural Festival. Related to this, approximately 20 books by Estonian authors were translated into Swedish.

For more information, see our Intercultural Dialogue section

Estonia/ 2.4 International cultural co-operation

2.4.6 Other relevant issues

Estonian cultural associations exist in numerous countries all over the world - Argentina, Brazil, Netherlands, Great Britain, Latvia, Lithuania, the Republic of South Africa, Luxemburg, Norway, Portugal, France, Germany, Switzerland, Denmark, Czech Republic and Belorussia. Especially active are the historical communities formed by the Estonian emigrants of the Second World War, which are located in Sweden, Finland, Canada, Australia, the USA, and Russia. Some of these communities continue to organise literary and visual arts activities and publish books, as well as magazines and newspapers.

Estonia/ 3. General objectives and principles of cultural policy

3.1 Main elements of the current cultural policy model

Estonian cultural life has, for a long time, been characterised by its close connection to identity politics. The re-building of an independent state started in 1991 and was preceded by a mobilisation of the whole society in order to regain the country's independence. In Estonia, professional culture is perceived as representative of the nation, both outwards and for its own citizens. This creates a certain pressure to prioritise well-established, heavily institutionalised forms of cultural expression. The wish to preserve unity can also, partially, be seen as a legacy from the Communist past, when both cultural life and civil society had to stand united against pressures from the repressive state. Thus, cultural policy was originally based on a defensive strategy.

On the other hand, the cultural workers themselves feel they must jointly defend themselves against the invasion of mass culture, market mechanisms, and from other spheres competing for budget resources. The Ministry of Culture has initiated public discussion in order to encourage feedback on documents concerning cultural policy; a means to unite the established cultural institutions in a common "front", to guard their share of the state budget against cuts. However, cultural policy is also prepared by other actors, including municipal governments and an important arm's-length body, The Cultural Endowment of Estonia (see below).

The maintenance of an established set of cultural institutions has remained the basis of cultural policy in independent Estonia. In 2007, 44.5% of the state cultural budget of EEK 2 403 million (154 million euros) consisted of expenses for professional theatres, museums, libraries, sports schools and centres, and state-run concert organisations. This share of the budget has somewhat increased in comparison to the corresponding figure of 39.7% in 2006. Due to the currency reform of 1992 and an ongoing rise in the domestic price level, it is hard to compare the development of the actual state cultural expenditure. Nevertheless, there has been considerable growth in the relative share of cultural expenditure in the overall state budget. Culture has been less influenced by the post-1992 monetarist principles in designing the budgets than other policy sectors. This is very much due to the fact that Estonians continue to define their nation in terms of culture, rather than political citizenship; accordingly, the financing of culture from the state budget can be successfully legitimated with reference to the needs of the nation. From this also emerges a central aim of Estonian cultural policy: that of "preserving" the nation through a web of national institutions (most of which were already established during the Soviet period as a defence against the central authorities' Russification policy).

An important exception to this institution-directed approach was the foundation of the Cultural Endowment of Estonia (Eesti Kultuurkapital) in 1994. In 2006, this institution received a fixed share from gambling, alcohol and tobacco excise taxes, amounting to 257.2 million EEK (16.5 million euros; i.e. 13.8% of all governmental expenditure on culture), which was given as support for various projects in culture and sports. The "newer" principle of granting support to projects departs from the typical institution-focused Estonian cultural policy. There is, however, a clear political wish to encourage the Cultural Endowment to finance the regular activities of cultural institutions. The overall share of the Cultural Endowment within government expenditure has fluctuated slightly (2000- 10.7%, 2001- 7.3%, 2003- 11.4%, 2005- 13.8%, 2007- 11.9%). The Gambling Tax Act of 2002, prescribes that the Cultural Endowment will participate in the financing of the construction of cultural buildings. The cultural expenditure of local governments amounts to about 35.6% of all public expenditure on culture; this share increased until 2002 when it reached a peak of 38.7%.

In general, the cultural policy model is still moderately centralised, rather than decentralised. During the 1990s, there has been a clear trend towards privatisation, decentralisation, and the use of arm's length bodies; in order to pursue these trends, the autonomy of the arm's length bodies needs to be preserved and stated in an explicit way.

Estonia/ 3. General objectives and principles of cultural policy

3.2 National definition of culture

The Preamble of the Estonian Constitution of 1992 states "the preservation of the Estonian nation and culture" among the main functions of the independent state. In a similar vein, the Ministry of Culture's developmental plan (called the Estonian Cultural Strategy 2008-2011) starts by stating the mission of the Ministry as "to support the maintaining of the Estonian national identity by valuing, preserving, developing, acknowledging and spreading Estonian fine arts, cultural heritage and sport in Estonia and abroad [...]".

Largely due to its important role in nation- and identity-building processes, cultural life has been able to defend its share in the restrained state budget. The prevailing definition of national culture has been instrumental in offering a certain guarantee of stability.

Estonia/ 3. General objectives and principles of cultural policy

3.3 Cultural policy objectives

Since Estonia's participation in the European Programme of National Cultural Policy Reviews in 1995/6, the Council of Europe priorities in cultural policy have been well-known and accepted. Official reference to them is being made, e.g., in the Developmental Plan for 2008-2011 of the Ministry of Culture (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 4.1). Support for identity, and the openness for cultural influences from other parts of the world, support for creativity and concern for participation in cultural life have all become a part of Estonian cultural policy. At the same time, the present stress on culture as an identity-building factor and on the preservation of the institutional structure of cultural life has not supported other aspects of the principles of diversity and decentralisation. One could, of course, argue that the small size of the Estonian society (in 2006, 1 344 700 inhabitants) sets some natural limits to any efforts towards decentralisation. The Ministry of Culture has shown a willingness to further cultural democracy by initiating public discussion on the aims of cultural policy. The recent adoption of new legislation on tax benefits and social security measures for creative artists and on the position of the Creative Unions was preceded by a round table on cultural policies, which was organised jointly by the Creative Unions and the Ministry of Culture (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.3.9 and http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1.3). In general, the principal outlines of cultural policy have been formulated in discussion with a large amount of experts and professional institutions. This can also be seen as a strategy of mobilising the public to defend the share of culture in the overall state budget.

It should be remembered that the overall social and economic development, i.e. the widening of gaps between different social groups' economic possibilities for participation in cultural life and the economic principles used in designing the state budget, do in fact restrict cultural democracy in the sense of participation. This problem is listed among the Ministry of Culture's present priorities (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 4.1).

Estonia/ 4. Current issues in cultural policy development and debate

4.1 Main cultural policy issues and priorities

The past five years have not brought about any principal changes in the priorities of the Ministry of Culture. The current priorities of cultural policy are:

This list is an extensive one and reflects all main areas of activity undertaken by the Ministry during the past five years. Political decisions select the ones that will be given priority. As stated in http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 3.3, the central priority has been and continues to be the maintenance of the established network of cultural institutions. The most visible changes result from the need to further co-operate with the EU, e.g. in issues concerning exportation of objects with cultural value, copyright, and telecommunications.

What has also changed is the tendency to communicate policy priorities more clearly, the first example of which was the adoption of a parliamentary document on the foundations of cultural policies in 1998 (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 3.3 and http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.1). A Developmental Plan for 2008-2011 (replacing a previous plan for 2007-2010) has been recently adopted and made available to the public by the Ministry of Culture. The plan states the Ministry's mission is to contribute to the preservation of Estonian national identity through support, development and promotion of arts, culture and sports. The document lists seven specific areas that will be treated as priorities, namely:

The present situation and the challenges to be met are presented in an overview of three administrative fields (Arts, Sports and Media) and of the Ministry's own organisation. The financial plan suggests an increase in the overall cultural budget from 2 124 million EEK (136 million euros) in 2006 to 5 119 million EEK (327 million euros) in 2011 (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 6.4).

Estonia/ 4.2 Recent policy issues and debates

4.2.1 Cultural minorities, groups and communities

In Estonia, there are about 423 000 people who are not ethnic Estonians by origin, representing 31% of the country's population (see Table 1).

Table 1:     Ethnic composition of the population in Estonia, 1934-2006

Ethnicity

1934

1989

2000

2006

Total

%

Total

%

Total

%

Total

%

Estonians

993 000

88

963 000

61

930 000

68

921 900

69

Russians

93 000

8

475 000

30

351 000

26

345 200

26

Germans

16 000

2

3 000

0.2

2 000

0.1

1 900

0.1

Swedes

8 000

0.7

300

0.02

..

..

..

..

Jews

4 000

0.4

500

0.3

2 000

0.1

1 900

0.1

Finns

..

..

17 000

1

12 000

1

11 200

1

Ukrainians

..

..

48 000

3

29 000

2

28 300

2

Belarusian

..

..

28 000

2

17 000

1

16 300

1

Others

13 000

1

30 000

2

27 000

2

18 000

1

Total

1 127 000

100

1 564 800

100

1 370 000

100

1 344 700

100

Source:      1934, 1989, 2000: population censuses; 2006: Statistics Estonia, population statistics.

A vast majority of this group are Russians. However, not all of them are legally described as members of national minorities. About three quarters of the inhabitants, with non-Estonian ethnicity, belong to an immigrant population of relatively recent origin. At the time when Estonia re-established its independence (1991), Soviet-time settlers into the country were legally regarded as immigrants; as a consequence, a considerable minority of its present population are either citizens of other countries or stateless. Those Soviet immigrants and their descendants who have not naturalised themselves are either citizens of other countries (6.3% of the country's population are citizens of Russia, 0.7% of other countries) or stateless (12.4%). It should be pointed out that a majority of the stateless people were, in fact, born in Estonia. However, most non-citizens are holders of long-term residence permits, which grant them the same economic and social rights that are guaranteed for Estonian citizens. They have a vote in municipal, but not in national elections, and are not themselves eligible as members of Parliament or municipal councils; non-citizens cannot hold certain public offices. In 1 January 2006, the total number of resident Estonian citizens was 1 137 706, while 230 649 were not Estonian citizens and had either a temporary (43 601) or long-term (187 048) residence permit.

The first paragraph of the Law on the Cultural Autonomy of National Minorities, enacted in 1993, defines national minorities as consisting of only those people who have Estonian citizenship. The law gives minorities the possibility of constituting themselves as autonomous communities. Despite encouraging experiences of comparable legislation from the pre-war years, the first effort to implement the present law did not take place before 2004, when Finns were the first minority group to establish a minority council as stipulated by the law. In 2007, the Swedes followed their example. At present, most minority groups do, however, not seem to possess the relatively large amount of organisational and other resources that are required to establish their own autonomous bodies; on the other hand, the government does not seem to have adopted any clear policies on the practical role and status of these bodies. A number of societies for the enhancement of minority cultures work as ordinary non-governmental organisations (NGOs). Representatives of some of the more important societies participate in the work of a consultative organ founded in 1993 - the President of the Republic's Roundtable on National Minorities. This participation does not endow them with any official status.

Estonia has ratified several international conventions concerned with the cultural rights of minorities such as the United Nations' International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and the Council of Europe's Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities. However, Estonia has not ratified the European Charter for Regional and Minority Languages.

Estonian is the sole official language of the country. However, the state provides its inhabitants with some cultural services in Russian, also. In certain municipalities, where a majority of inhabitants are ethnic Russians, the local administration is legally obliged to offer services in both languages. Even in other localities, basic public services and information are usually available in Russian also. As for other minority languages, the state or the municipalities do not provide any language services. However, there are a number of societies, which help to promote the cultures of other national minority groups e.g., Armenians, Latvians, Swedes, Finns. These societies receive state financial support from the Ministry of Culture; granting of state support is not dependent on citizenship. From 1991 to 1997, the yearly increase of support to these groups was continuously lower than that of the cost of living index. In 1998 however, it was more than doubled, to the level of EEK 2 million (128 000 euros) per year. This indicated the adoption of a more active stand in policies towards immigrants and national minorities; in other fields of politics, integration issues seem to have gained more attention. In 2007, the budget was EEK 2.7 million (ca. 175 000 euros) and has increased from 2005. On the local level, a substantial part of the governments' support for cultural organisations is granted to those promoting minority cultures.

At the same time, statistics and surveys show that the participation of ethnic minorities and immigrants in cultural activities has remained on a lower level than that of native Estonians. This may be related to their income and socio-economic status, which are, on the average, lower than those of native Estonians. Moreover, these differences seem to have been growing, rather than decreasing during the last ten years. 2003 the lower level of participation in cultural activities by minority groups was confirmed again by a survey on cultural consumption and participation that was commissioned by the Ministry of Culture. According to the latest findings there are, however, three cultural activities that are more common among people belonging to minority groups: purchasing books, purchasing art, and visiting concerts. It is important from the point of view of overall political development, that non-Estonians do not become alienated from the country's cultural life. In the long run, the objective of cultural policies towards immigrants and national minorities should be to support the development of such institutions and forms of culture that help them integrate into society, while at the same time preserving and developing their national identities.

Estonia/ 4.2 Recent policy issues and debates

4.2.2 Language issues and policies

The country's only official language is Estonian. Recently, there has been a lively debate over the needs and possibilities to protect the national language from foreign influence. Exposure to foreign mass culture is sometimes seen as having an adverse effect on the structure and vocabulary of the spoken and even written language. The State Language Office is responsible for enforcing the Language Act through activities, such as organising exams in the Estonian language and giving practical advice on linguistic matters. In the south-eastern Võru region, there have recently been attempts to revive the local language, which is usually considered a dialect of Estonian.

Russian speakers comprise about 31% of the country's population, but the language has no official status. There are some cultural institutions operating in Russian, notably the state-owned Russian Drama Theatre and the municipally run (since 2001) Russian Cultural Centre in Tallinn. One radio channel of the public broadcasting company is broadcasting in Russian. Non-governmental organisations of ethnic minority groups receive regular financing from the Ministry of Culture and also from the local governments. In practice, business organisations and municipalities, with a large number of Russophone inhabitants, offer services both in Estonian and Russian, and occasionally in other languages, such as English. In cultural policy, the stress has nevertheless been on the development of Estonian-language cultural services, while cultural life in minority languages has been more dependent on non-governmental initiatives. As was noted in http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 4.2.1, Estonia has not ratified the European Charter for Regional and Minority Languages.

Estonia/ 4.3 Recent policy issues and debates

4.2.3 Intercultural dialogue: actors, strategies, programmes

The issues of inter-ethnic relations and immigration became a hotly debated issue in Estonia during the revolutionary development of the late 1980s that eventually led to a restoration of Estonia's independence in 1991. At that time, immigration meant the inflow of work force and retired military officers from other parts of the USSR; it had already led to a major change in the population's ethnic composition. Along with a growing linguistic Russification of public life, the independence activists interpreted immigration as a threat to the future existence of the Estonian nation. The discourse on immigrants and migration has so far been intertwined with the debate on such issues as the integration of minorities, citizenship policies and language policies. The number of immigrants to Estonia from countries outside the former Soviet Union has, until now, remained almost insignificant. In fact, the need to develop a policy towards new immigrants has become apparent only very recently, partly due to Estonia's membership in the European Union. Accordingly, the discourse on migration related issues has until recently been primarily concerned with the Soviet-time settlers to the country.

At the same time, some problems have remained unsolved and continue to be debated. They are related both to symbolic and practical aspects of the relations between the majority and minorities. In 2007, the symbolic controversies showed their latent conflict potential. A Soviet-time monument for the victims of the Second World War that was located in the centre of Tallinn became a subject of occasionally heated public debate. During the parliamentary election campaign, Prime Minister Andrus Ansip and his reform Party made a promise to relocate the monument to the Military Cemetery. After the elections, and the appointment of Ansip's new Government Cabinet, this line of action was followed. However, removing the monument triggered protests by Russian-speakers, which eventually degenerated into violent street riots on 26-27 April, 2007. The press discussion following these events has shown that there still exists widely differing views about the goals and possibilities of policies towards the Russian-speaking minority.

Among the practical issues, the most crucial is the future of Russian-language secondary education. According to the official policy, Russian-language secondary schools should adopt Estonian as the language of instruction, of at least 60% of the lessons. This change is about to be introduced from 2007. Within minority organisations, the future of secondary education in Russian is debated actively; even for people with non-Russian ethnicity, the Russian language and culture may (sometimes, but not always) be closer to their own experiences than those of the Estonians. The minority activists sometimes express their stance by saying that the integration process should be "two-sided", implying that the Estonians should pay more attention to the Russian language and culture.

Since 2000, state policies towards non-citizens and ethnic minorities have been formulated in a general action plan entitled Integration in Estonian Society 2000‑2007. The programme is coordinated by the quasi-governmental Non-Estonians' Integration Foundation, established in 1998. The programme discusses integration in Estonian society as being shaped by two processes: firstly, the social harmonisation of society, around "a strong common national core", based on knowledge of the Estonian language and Estonian citizenship; and secondly, the opportunity to maintain ethnic differences, based on the recognition of the cultural rights of ethnic minorities. The objectives have been classified under four sub-programmes, which include education in Estonian language skills within the elementary and secondary schools, education in minority cultures and languages, teaching of Estonian to adults, and strengthening of the social competences of members of the minorities. These objectives should be accompanied by the spread of positive attitudes towards integration among both the minorities and the majority population. When the programme was assessed, the very fact of its elaboration and implementation has been regarded as a significant achievement in itself. However, certain shortcomings have been raised; firstly, the implementation has concentrated on the education and language sectors, which have received three-quarters of the total financing of the programme (approximately 14.4 million euros for the period 2000-2003), leaving the fields of legal-political and socio-economic integration dependent on their inclusion in other government programmes. Although the programme stresses the objective of combining integration with the maintenance of strong minority identities, and the minority citizens' competence in their ethnic cultures, its implementation has been accused of being rather assimilationist in practice. There is no present definition of "integration" which is shared by the government, the general public, and the representatives of minority organisations. In 2007, the government has appointed a working group with the task of preparing a new action plan for the years 2008-2013.

For more information, see:
Database of Good Practice on Intercultural Dialogue and our Intercultural Dialogue section.

For more information on the government's National Strategy for the European Year of Intercultural Dialogue please see: http://ec.europa.eu/culture/eac/dialogue/strategies_en.html 

Estonia/ 4.3 Recent policy issues and debates

4.2.4 Social cohesion and cultural policies

Since 1991, developments in Estonian society have, in general, not been conducive to social cohesion. The introduction of market mechanisms, and the state's relative inability to balance their effects with social political measures, has created wide disparities between social classes and different regions. The rapid change in society, that characterised the 1990s, was not beneficial for the creation of cooperation and trust among members of society. However, the rapid development of the non-profit sector, since the late 1990s, is a sign of change in this respect. At present (2007), the number of registered non-profit associations is 24 164 - i.e. a density of 18.0 organisations per 1 000 inhabitants, which is a high figure internationally. Not all of them are, however, active and they tend to operate with very few resources.

In cultural policies, there has constantly been a tendency to present culture as part of a common, "national" cause, which can, in some respects, have the effect of enhancing social cohesion. At the same time, it may have the opposite effect when seen from the point of view of those people who have difficulties in seeing themselves as a part of the national "grand narrative". In explicit terms, social cohesion has become a cultural policy issue in the specific field of integration of national minorities and immigrants.

The Constitution, which was adopted in 1992, recognises the right of national minorities to express their identity and develop their cultural traditions. The state administration is, in principle, mono-lingually Estonian. However, in practice, society has continued to function bilingually in Estonian and Russian, especially in such ethnically mixed localities as Tallinn, the capital. Even if the city itself does not organise cultural services in Russian, or in other minority languages, it finances the activities of a number of NGOs dealing with minority cultures, and also provides them with space in the Russian Cultural Centre and in other cultural and community centres. Similar pragmatism can be seen from the language strategies adopted by larger businesses: even if public advertising in other languages than Estonian is restricted by legislation, clients are offered services in Estonian and Russian (and eventually English or even Finnish) as a matter of daily routine. The same can be said of most public services such as education, health care, police, communications, etc., and also of many types of activities of the non-profit organisations.

The legislative measure most directly concerned with minority cultures is the National Minorities Cultural Autonomy Act (1993). The provisions of the Act give the national minorities the possibility to organise their cultural and educational life through representative bodies elected by registered members of the minority. The institutions designed by the Act have been established, for the first time, by the Finns in 2004 and recently, by Swedes in 2007. Obviously, the whole procedure requires quite a large amount of organisational work - probably too large when one considers the abilities and organisational resources available - while the law gives no guarantee of enhanced financial support from the government. The Act has, therefore, largely remained a dead-letter; minorities continue to organise their cultural life through voluntary associations and non-profit foundations, in accordance to the general legislation on non-profit organisations.

Even if the number of different organisations for minority cultures is large, they have remained very small in size, and their ability to reach out to the members of minority groups is limited. On the other hand, there are some events and institutions that are able to remind Estonians about their country's ethnic diversity - the Slavonic Song festival, the Russian Drama Theatre, the Swedish and Armenian churches, or the radio and TV programmes in minority languages. The cultural policies of the state and local governments, towards ethnic minorities, have mainly consisted of direct and indirect support to the activities of non-profit organisations and amateur cultural groups. However, these organisations and groups cannot, by themselves, have much influence on one of the most acute problems faced by cultural policy today: the minorities' low level of cultural participation and consumption. This phenomenon is, in part, dependent on socio-economic factors that cannot be changed by cultural policy measures.

Estonia/ 4.2 Recent policy issues and debates

4.2.5 Media pluralism and content diversity

After the privatisation of the previously state-owned media during the early 1990s, the initially small media enterprises started to merge into a few larger corporations. In 1998, the majority shares of the two largest corporations of printed media were bought by Scandinavian-based international corporations. Likewise, the major private TV channels are in foreign ownership. In order to prevent media concentration, the Broadcasting Act obliges the Ministry of Culture not to grant broadcasting permission to an enterprise or group of enterprises that could result in the emergence of a monopoly in a certain region, or if the same enterprise is also a publisher of printed daily or weekly newspapers.

The political role and (perhaps lacking) objectivity of the media have recurred as discussion themes during the past few years. The major dailies are all politically independent, but it has been argued that the inexperience and youth of many journalists have caused them to accept, uncritically, the neo-liberal tendencies now prevailing in Estonian politics. On the other hand, analysts have suggested that, since late 2003, social problems caused by these trends have started to receive more attention in the press.

Broadcasting legislation guarantees the independence of broadcasters from the state and prescribes political balance. It also specifies quotas for the share of domestic and European programming, and for the share of programmes produced by the broadcaster itself (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.3.8). Estonian Television (ETV), which is the biggest producer of original programmes in the Estonian and Russian languages, has largely succeeded in fulfilling its role as a public broadcaster. In autumn 2007, the possibilities of launching a separate National TV-channel showing programmes and news in Russian have been discussed intensely.

Estonia/ 4.2 Recent policy issues and debates

4.2.6 Culture industries: policies and programmes

The term "culture industry" has, until recently, been absent from the Estonian policy documents. A report on design was launched in 2004 by the Ministry of Economics and Communication, and it has been followed by the creation of a working group on culture industries at the Ministry of Culture, with participation from different experts and stakeholders. In 2006, the working group presented its report, based on research carried out by experts from the Tallinn University of Technology and the independent research institutions - the Estonian Institute for Future Studies (Eesti Tulevikuuuringute instituut) and the Estonian Institute for Economic Research (Eesti Konjunktuuriinstituut). 2007 was the Year of Design and offered public programmes, awards and exhibitions; it also saw the initiation of debate over the importance of local design and its export as a way of promoting the country.

Educational programmes in cultural management offer training in skills required by professionals in cultural industries (see http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.3).

During the 1990s there was a tendency to abolish state monopolies over the culture industries and to encourage the set up of a number of smaller private companies. At the same time, there was a sharp decline in consumption figures, which meant a decrease in resources. Rather unexpectedly, however, producers have been able to maintain the substantial diversity of their output, as revealed by the increase in the number of book titles, periodicals, records, and films. For instance, the number of book titles published in 2006 was 4 040 (compared to 4 060 in 2005, 3 468 in 2000 and 2 291 in 1994), and the number of different periodicals was 1 158 (compared to 1 190 in 2005, 956 in 2000 and 501 in 1994).

State policy towards the culture industries must, on the one hand, cope with a scarcity of resources and, on the other hand, it must ensure the continuity of such functions and cannot rely solely on market mechanisms. These include entire cultural genres such as classical music, specific technical functions such as TV transmissions, or the technology of the film industry. In 2006, the Ministry employed a junior expert on the culture industries, and a new Department of Development was established. The new activities have included a mapping of the current situation of different sectors in creative industries, and an analysis of policies in other countries. They have resulted in proposals for the state budget strategy, for the development plan of the Ministry of Culture, and for the Government's strategy for the use of the EU structural funds for the years 2007 to 2013.

Hitherto, direct state intervention into cultural industries has mainly taken one of two forms:

Estonia/ 4.2 Recent policy issues and debates

4.2.7 Employment policies for the cultural sector

According to labour force surveys conducted by the Statistical Office, the share of persons employed in the fields of entertainment, sports, and culture amounted to around 3.1% of the labour force in 2006. At the beginning of 2007, the average monthly net wage of this group amounted to 7 485 EEK, which was 85.9 % of the average of all employees (the data covers enterprises with more than 49 employees and all state-owned and municipal institutions and organisations).

Table 2:     Number of persons employed within entertainment, sports, and culture, according to labour force surveys from 2000, 2001, 2003-2006

Year

Persons employed

2006

19 800

2005

17 300

2004

18 700

2003

20 800

2001

18 500

2000

18 200

Source:      Statistics Estonia.

In the case of theatres, employment has been used as an argument in favour of preserving the existing institutional structure, especially in the provinces. As a way of decentralising theatre policies, decisions on subsidies for theatres and dance theatres are directly based on their employment figures, since 2004. This model was taken from the Finnish system of financing theatres. It can also be pointed out that the programme of restoring schools located in historical manor buildings will enable their future functioning as multi-functional community centres and thus will also be able to create a number of new working opportunities related to library services, concerts, tourism, etc.

In practice, many cultural creators continue to find themselves forced to work in fields not related to their profession.

Estonia/ 4.2 Recent policy issues and debates

4.2.8 New technologies and cultural policies

Since at least the mid-1990s, the enhanced use of new information technologies has belonged to the top priorities of the government. This has been one of the factors behind Estonia's high position in comparison to other Central and Eastern European countries concerning the number of Internet connections per capita, or the density of cellular phones. The introduction and development of new information technologies in the public sphere (e.g. schools, libraries and museums) has managed to receive financial support from private businesses. In order to secure such programmes, the state provides approximately one third of the necessary resources which are managed by a state-owned foundation. The remaining funds are derived from loans and from other foundations and private businesses.

In recent years, a major project was initiated to provide all schools with computers. At the same time there have been some resources available to computerise library catalogues. In1995, an Information Network of Estonian Libraries was founded by seven scientific libraries. They have been followed by public libraries. In May 2002, the Ministry of Culture agreed with a private firm and a state-owned foundation to start a programme of uniting as many public libraries as possible in an internet-based information network. The programme includes an information campaign aimed at library users. Internet connections have been made available in most Estonian public libraries.

Another example of public-private partnership in the field is the Centre for Contemporary Arts, Estonia. Founded in 1992 as the Soros Center of Contemporary Arts in Estonia, it played, in the early 1990s, an important role in supporting the introduction of new technologies in artistic creation. Since 2000, the centre is no longer financed by the Open Estonia Foundation (a private foundation financed by George Soros). Its administrative expenses have been covered by the Ministry of Culture, and the programmes and events have received external financing (e.g. from the Cultural Endowment of Estonia, which has a department for inter-disciplinary cultural projects).

Documentation on cultural heritage monuments has been made available to the public via the Internet. In 2001, an information system was created uniting 20 museums, including all the national and county museums. In the course of this project, 52 museum workers were provided with training in the uses of information technology. The total budget of this project (KVIS) was EEK 900 000 (ca. 57 600 euros). A new database, consisting of detailed information on the museums' collections (MUIS), is being introduced and plans to open in 2011.

Altogether, the Ministry of Culture's budget for projects in the field of information technology was around EEK 5 million (ca. 320 000 euros) in 2000, EEK 8 million (ca. 512 000 euros) in 2001, EEK 11 million (ca. 704 000 euros) in 2002, EEK 6 million (ca. 383 000 euros) in 2004, and EEK 3 million (ca. 191 500 euros) in 2007.

Estonia/ 4.2 Recent policy issues and debates

4.2.9 Heritage issues and policies

In 2006, there were 209 museums in Estonia. During the 1990s, their number grew considerably (in 1990 there were 77). Some of them belong to the state, some to the local governments, and some are private non-profit entities. They hold about 9.1 million catalogued items. Around 1.9 million people visit the museums yearly and attendance levels have been increasing slightly. In 2006, investments in real estate and new infrastructure remain among the priorities of the Ministry of Culture. Museum buildings are old and often in poor condition, resulting in problems with depositories, exhibition halls, and working premises. The central museums with large depositories require rapid restoration. The construction works of a new Museum of Arts began in 2002 and were finished in 2006.

Educational programmes (BA and MA curricula; ISCED97 5A level) in restoration have been established at the Estonian Academy of Arts; there are no other educational programmes specifically concerned with heritage protection. A council for the preservation of cultural heritage in libraries, museums, and archives was established in 1999. Among other things, it has the responsibility of awarding licenses for professional restaurateurs.

In the field of the built environment, an important challenge to heritage protection has been posed by the denationalisation process that began in 1993. The new owners of historic buildings sometimes lack the resources, competence, and motivation to preserve the historical uniqueness of their property.

The Heritage Conservation Act of 2002 (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.3.3) distinguishes between different types of historical monuments, which are registered by the National Heritage Board (Muinsuskaitseamet). Their use is subject to relatively strict regulations in order to guarantee the preservation of their historical value. According to the law, the responsibility for specifying, controlling, and administering regulations concerning cultural monuments lies with local governments, which are controlled and supervised by the National Heritage Board. In 2006, an agenda Estonian Museums of the 21 Century was adopted by the Ministry, which considers establishing stable networks between museums as one of its main policies. As part of implementing the agenda, a bilingual webpage http://www.muuseum.ee has been launched by the Estonian Museum Association.

Within the Ministry of Culture, a National Heritage Council (Muinsuskaitse nõukogu) functions as a counselling body. Registration, inspecting and licensing functions are left to the National Heritage Board, while local governments are expected to inform it of any activities in the locality which may be of relevance regarding cultural monuments. The division of responsibilities has been a subject of some controversy. In comparison with the previous Heritage Conservation Act of 1994, the provisions of the present legislation (and already those of an amendment in 1997) entrust the local governments with more responsibility. It is feared that the scientific expertise required may not always be available when needed. The need for ensuring the development of basic research in heritage is stressed by the Ministry of Culture and is referred to in its Developmental Plan of 2002-2007.

Both legislation and the administration for the protection of the cultural heritage are, to a great extent, geared toward monuments - archaeological, historical, artistic, architectural, and industrial. There are clearly stated regulations on the use and care of monuments, and even some resources for their restoration and renovation. However, the situation created by the processes of privatisation and denationalisation calls for a broader and more flexible view of the objectives and devices for the protection of the cultural heritage. The restoration and care of relatively few, although historically unique, monuments cannot compensate for the damage caused by the lack of care of the historic everyday environment. As one would expect, it is in the field of built-up areas where heritage protection and financial interests clash most visibly. In order to resolve the situation, the protection of the cultural heritage should, in fact, influence city planning from an early stage. In some cases, e.g. in Tallinn, the existence of districts with so-called environmental value (miljööväärtus) have been officially recognised in developmental plans, however, have not been integrated into practical city planning (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.3.5). At present, plans for heritage sites in towns are being adopted on an ad hoc basis, mainly on the initiative of the owners and prospective builders of these sites. As a result, planning fails to appreciate the need to preserve the unique character of historical city districts.

An emerging issue of concern is the digital heritage; due to the development of information technology, earlier recoded data is rapidly becoming impossible to use. The Estonian Social Sciences Data Archive, located in Tartu, was established in 1996 and has now converted to the PC format and been made available to researchers in the form of data bases containing no more than 200 social research projects from 1975-1997. Within the Ministry of Culture, a Government Strategy for Digital Heritage Protection for 2004-2007 was prepared by a working group and adopted in October 2003.

For more information, see
European Heritage Network: Country profile Estonia

Estonia/ 4.2 Recent policy issues and debates

4.2.10 Gender equality and cultural policies

The issue of gender equality has not been consciously addressed by cultural policies, nor are there are specific strategies for the support of women as professionals in the cultural labour market. However, culture and education have for long belonged to those spheres of economic activity, in which a majority of employees are women. This issue also concerns the Ministry of Culture, in which most officials are female.

During recent years, the geographical position of Estonia, with its proximity to the Nordic countries, as well as membership of the European Union, has had some positive influences on introducing the debate on gender discrimination. However, in cultural life, the existing gender inequality is rooted in the cultural and social practices of the Soviet Union. Cultural predictions and stereotypes continue to reproduce the existing gender discrimination in society, although there has been little research carried out on gender distribution in the cultural sector.

A Law on Gender Equality has been enacted in Estonia since 2004. It prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender and obliges public bodies and employers to promote gender equality. However, the ILO Convention No. 111 Concerning Discrimination in Respect of Employment and Occupation has still not been ratified by Estonia.

Estonia/ 4. Current issues in cultural policy development and debate

4.3 Other relevant issues and debates

One of the more important recent decisions within cultural policies was the merging of the national TV and radio companies into one organisation by the Estonian National Broadcasting Act passed in January, 2007. According to the Act, the National Broadcasting Company is ruled by a Council nominated by the Parliament. The original Government Bill had designed that all members of the Council should be Members of the Parliament; however, after protests from several media professionals and a lively press discussion, the final version of the Act establishes that four of the twelve members should be "recognised experts" of broadcasting.  

Estonia's accession to the European Union in May 2004 was important in general political discussions. While its relevance to cultural policies is chiefly limited to broadcasting and copyright policies, it has however, lifted identity issues to the fore.

Several debates and controversies have been concerned with monuments and memorial sites. In 2004, a monument for the Estonians who served in the German SS Legion during the Second World War was erected through private initiative in a small municipality in South West Estonia, but the government gave orders for its displacement. Soon after that, a public debate focused on a Soviet war memorial that stood on a central location in Tallinn. Some debaters demanded its removal, while others (especially the Russian-speakers) defended its existing location. The issue eventually became part of the parliamentary electoral campaign of 2007. In April 2007, the monument was relocated to the Military Cemetery in Tallinn, which led to large-scale demonstrations and a subsequent violent street riot in Tallinn. A competition for a planned new Freedom Monument in Tallinn took place in 2007, and its outcome has been hotly debated. The city of Tallinn has also decided upon the erection of a huge bronze statue of the Estonian mythical hero Kalevipoeg on the city's seafront. Both the idea itself and, especially, the artistic quality of the planned statue have been criticised by sculptors and architects.

Other important debates have been concerned with the public spaces of the capital (Tallinn). Despite loud protests by intellectuals and NGOs, the former Sakala conference centre - an example of Soviet Estonian post-romantic architecture of the 1980s - was demolished in 2007, in order to make space for the construction of a new shopping and leisure centre. At present, one more active debate is concerned with Soviet-time architecture in Tallinn. The owners of the Hotel Viru have applied for permission to build an annex to the functionalist building, dating from 1972. According to the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, the planned annex is not suitable to be erected in the vicinity of Tallinn's Old Town, a World Heritage site. In all, the capital seems to lack the overall plans that could ensure architectural coherency between new construction projects and their architectural environment.

In 2003-2004, both the professional unions of cultural workers and the Ministry of Culture were actively promoting discussion on new tax legislation and social security for cultural workers (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.3.9 and chapter 8.1.3).

In autumn 2006, a public debate on cultural industries was initiated by the national daily Eesti Päevaleht, which published a special issue on this topic introducing the vocabulary in the local context. The ideas introduced by the newspaper were unfamiliar for many creative artists not being used to discussing their activities in economic terms; many of them answered with critical accounts of the very concept of cultural industries.

Estonia/ 5.1 General legislation

5.1.1 Constitution

The Estonian Constitution, adopted in 1992, states that "the preservation of the Estonian nation and culture through ages" is one of the central aims of the Republic. It does not include any specific reference to heritage protection. The Constitution guarantees freedom of speech and self-expression, while the incitement of national, racial, religious or political hatred, violence or discrimination is prohibited. As to the cultural rights of national minorities, the Constitution refers to the National Minorities Cultural Autonomy Act (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 4.2.1). Right to education is guaranteed for everyone. An artist is guaranteed the inalienable right to his or her work, and the state has the obligation of protecting the rights of an author.

 

Estonia/ 5.1 General legislation

5.1.2 Division of jurisdiction

The Estonian system of public administration is divided between three levels, i.e., those of the central government, the county, and the municipality. However, the regional (county) authorities are in principle mere local representatives of the central government and do not develop cultural policies of their own. The Ministry of Culture is the primary body that coordinates cultural policies on the level of the central government; its functions are defined in the By-Laws of the Ministry of Culture (1996; latest amendment in 2004). The municipal authorities are responsible for providing their populations with services, including general education and cultural services. Whereas the state government finances municipal schools according to the number of registered inhabitants within the age of obligatory education, the ability of municipalities to offer cultural services are more varying and dependent on their overall economic situation.

 

Estonia/ 5.1 General legislation

5.1.3 Allocation of public funds

Public funds for culture are allocated during the general decision-making processes which define state and municipal budgets (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 2.1 and http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 2.2). The Ministry of Culture prepares a budget proposal, which includes the expenses of different institutions and programmes administered by the Ministry. The budget proposal is presented by the Minister of Culture to the Government Cabinet and will, after political negotiations, be presented to the Parliament as a part of the Bill on the State Budget. In the Parliament, the Cultural Committee, political factions or individual MPs may suggest changes. After approval of the budget, the specified budget proposals of individual institutions will be approved by the Minister of Culture, in accordance with the sums defined by the state budget. Regarding the administration of grant programmes for activities outside state institutions, the Ministry has formed specific committees, which may include experts from outside the Ministry. In addition to these general principles of administering the cultural budget, legislation on alcohol, tobacco and gambling taxes, and excise duties earmarks a fixed percentage of this income for two governmental arm's length bodies, the Council of Gambling Taxes and the Cultural Endowment of Estonia. These two bodies grant money for cultural purposes, the former one also for other social purposes (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1 and http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1.2).

 

Estonia/ 5.1 General legislation

5.1.4 Social security frameworks

An individual artist may work either as an employee, as a registered individual entrepreneur, or as a freelancer. The Act on Creative Artists and Creative Artists' Unions adopted in November, 2004, offers the latter two the right to tax deductions of documented expenses related to their creative activities. There are eight major creative artist unions (visual artists, writers, theatre workers, cinema workers, composers, architects, interior decorators, and performing musicians), which, apart from other activities, also function as labour unions. The new legislation (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.3.9 and http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1.3) includes an outline of the role of the unions. On one hand, cultural workers are part of the general unemployment insurance scheme introduced in 2002, which - depending on the past insurance period - grants a payment of 40-50% of the previous average income (no higher than three times the national average wage) for a period of 6 to 12 months, provided that the employee has not left his or her previous employment voluntarily or due to his or her own misconduct. On the other hand, the Act on Creative Artists and Creative Artists' Unions introduces a scheme of monthly supports for creative work, which can be applied by freelance artists who lack other sources of income. The amount corresponds to the official minimum wage plus social and health insurance fees, and will be granted for a period no longer than six months. The support can only be granted once in any two years. The Creative Unions are responsible for the administration of the support schemes in their respective fields of culture.

For more information, see our Status of Artists section

 

Estonia/ 5.1 General legislation

5.1.5 Tax laws

As was noted in http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.1.3, legislation on alcohol, tobacco and gambling taxes, and excise duties earmarks a fixed percentage of this income for two governmental arm's length bodies, the Council of Gambling Taxes and the Cultural Endowment of Estonia. These two bodies grant money for cultural purposes, the former one also for other social purposes (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1 and http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1.2).

Registered non-profit organisations (NPOs), including those active in the cultural field, have the right to apply for a special status that allows private enterprises to deduct donations from their taxable income to an amount not exceeding 3% of the total payments subject to social tax (except fringe benefits), or 10% of the profit made in last year. A private individual making such donations may deduct a sum that does not exceed 5% of his or her taxable income. This is similar to the status given to churches and religious associations, political parties, state-run universities, and governmental bodies. It should be noted however, that not many NPOs and potential donors are aware of this possibility and that the Ministry of Finance who decides upon granting this status has not clearly announced its criteria of decision-making.

The abolition of corporate income tax in 2000 and certain changes in the Income Tax Act that came into force in 2002 have in effect diminished the maximum amount of deductions allowed.

In general, the Value Added Tax (VAT) is 18%. However, according to the relevant law (2003), VAT on books and periodicals is 5% and teaching materials are freed from VAT altogether. Concerts organised by a producer who has previously received public financial support amounting to at least 10% of its budget are charged a VAT rate of 5%. This latter provision has recently been raised by the Legal Chancellor as unconstitutional. The present government coalition has made a proposal in November 2005 that all concerts and performances should be applied the general VAT rate of 18%.

Estonia/ 5.1 General legislation

5.1.6 Labour laws

Artists in Estonia are subject to the same labour laws as all residents. See also chapter 5.1.4.

For more information, see our Status of Artists section

Estonia/ 5.1 General legislation

5.1.7 Copyright provisions

The Estonian Copyright Act entered into force in December 1992. Section 12 of the Act provides a substantial list of moral rights that authors enjoy. The Estonian copyright-system is based on the European approach - author's rights / droit d'auteur.

In 1999, anti-piracy measures were added to the Copyright Act, Administrative Code, Criminal Code, Consumer Protection Act and Customs Amendment Act.

The Copyright and Related Rights Amendment Act was adopted by the Parliament in December, 1999, and entered into force from 2000. The main objectives of these legal amendments were:

Piracy issues were further addressed by a new Copyright Amendment Act adopted in September 2000 and by the Copyright Act, Commercial Lease Act and Consumer Protection Act Amendment Act from May 2001.

The Act on Prevention of Importation and Exportation of Goods Infringing Intellectual Property Rights which provides for measures to be applied on the Estonian border entered into force on 1 September 2001.

The Rome Convention and the Geneva Convention were signed by Estonia in 2000. The WIPO agreements were acceded to in 2003.

There are certain other legal reforms which effect copyright and related rights:

Since 1995, a blank tape levy system has been in effect in Estonia. It was updated in 2002. Levies are set by the Ministry of Culture by December 1, each year, after negotiations with organisations representing authors, producers, and importers of recording devices and equipment. Payment is to be collected by the Estonian Authors' Association, an organisation representing authors and authorised to do so by a resolution of the Minister of Culture. The organisation is obligated to distribute the collected levies to beneficiaries (authors, performers and producers of phonograms) according to a scheme approved by the Ministry of Culture. The scheme is set by March 31, each year. According to the government resolution it is possible (in case beneficiaries agree) to redistribute some of the collected levies for the development of the fields of music, video- and audio-culture, radio and television, and also for educational or scientific purposes etc. However, the amount thus redistributed is not allowed to exceed 10% of the total of collected levies under the private copying regime. At present, the Estonian Authors' Association has shown interest towards increased control over photocopy machines.

Section 13 of the Copyright Act states that remuneration is to be paid to authors to compensation them for the lending of their works from public libraries. The payment procedure has been recently established and makes the payments directly dependent on the number of times a book, musical recording, etc. has been borrowed from a public library. The payment is not made automatically, but follows an application by the author or his / her representative. Statistics on the first payments were published and commented on by the media, showing some astonishment over the large share of payments received by less known non-fiction authors. However, no public discussion followed.

Estonia/ 5.1 General legislation

5.1.8 Data protection laws

In 2001, Estonia ratified the Council of Europe's Convention for the Protection of Individuals with regard to Automatic Processing of Personal Data. Other relevant legislation includes the Law on State Secrets (1994), the Law on the Protection of Individual Data (1996) and the Law on Public Information (2000). According to these legislative acts, everybody has right of access to any public documents, as far as they do not include information classified as state secrets, or information that is concerned with issues of private nature on other individuals. A body called the Inspection of Data Protection was established in 2001, within the Ministry of Internal Affairs and has, among other things, the task of controlling, supervising and regulating the use and eventual dissolution of databases including information on private individuals. Information from different databases may not be combined without prior permission from the Inspection.

 

Estonia/ 5.1 General legislation

5.1.9 Language laws

The Broadcasting Act (1994) mentions the preservation and development of the Estonian language as one of the functions of the public broadcasters. The Language Act (1995) requires that in most cases, with the exceptions of foreign-language radio service, language courses and directly transmitted news reports, a transmission, or a film performance in a foreign language must be accompanied by a translation into Estonian. In television programmes for an adult audience the most common form of translation is sub-titling. Dubbing is a rather uncommon practice. The law includes no statement on this issue.

 

Estonia/ 5.2 Legislation on culture

The most comprehensive treatment of cultural policies can be found in a parliamentary declaration called The Foundations of the Cultural Policy of the Republic of Estonia, adopted in 1998. This document mainly outlines the plans and overall situation and seeks to express and establish general consensus on some central issues. It is not, however, legally binding.

In practice, cultural policy making relies on a number of specific acts, some of which are relevant for many areas outside the sphere of cultural policy. Generally speaking, legislation has moved towards a greater differentiation between the tasks of different governmental agencies. It seems that in addition to domestic discussion, international contacts and influences have played an important role in the development of legislation, either through international conventions ratified by Estonia (copyright legislation in particular), or through the use of foreign countries' practices as models when designing domestic legislation.

The acts regulating the functions of different institutions do not usually include explicit provisions on their financing. The Cultural Endowment of Estonia Act (1994) is one of the exceptions, making the state-owned Endowment independent of the overall cultural budget.

The following major legislative acts regulate the cultural field.

Estonia/ 5.3 Sector specific legislation

5.3.1 Visual and applied arts

There are no specific legislative acts concerned with visual and applied arts. According to the Cultural Endowment of Estonia Act (1994), the state-owned Endowment is comprised of nine departments, one of which gives grants for visual and applied arts (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 2.2 and http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1.2).

 

Estonia/ 5.3 Sector specific legislation

5.3.2 Performing arts and music

There are no specific legislative acts concerned with performing arts and music. According to the Cultural Endowment of Estonia Act (1994), the state-owned Endowment is comprised of nine departments, one of which gives grants for music and one for drama (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1.2).

The Law on Pensions Related to Term of Service (1992) grants musicians, actors, and other performing arts employees of concert organisations the right to retire after 20 to 25 years of professional activity.

Estonia/ 5.3 Sector specific legislation

5.3.3 Cultural heritage

The Heritage Conservation Act of 2002 distinguishes between different types of historical monuments, which are registered by the National Heritage Board (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 4.2.9). The use of historical monuments is subject to relatively strict regulations in order to guarantee the preservation of their historical value. If the owner of a monument does not follow the regulations, the state and the local government have the option of expropriating it for a "just" price - a provision that has, however, never been implemented. Local governments are expected to inform the Board of any activities in the locality which may be of relevance, regarding cultural monuments. Local governments have the right to impose restrictions on building activities in historically valuable areas. In comparison with the previous 1994 act, the present one is more explicit in stating the regulations and restrictions for the uses of historical monuments and more detailed in stating the responsibilities of the related offices and civil servants.

Estonia/ 5.3 Sector specific legislation

5.3.4 Literature and libraries

The Public Libraries Act from 1998 puts the responsibility for maintaining public libraries on municipal governments. They receive financing from the state for purchases of books etc., for Internet connection, and for costs related to government-initiated programmes. In municipalities with several public libraries, one will act as a central library. In every 1 of the 15 counties, one public library will be used as a regional library. The salaries of four employees of a regional library will be covered by the state. The Estonian National Library fulfills the functions of the parliamentary library, and its work is regulated by a specific act.

The authors of books borrowed by the library readers have the right for compensation. The amount of compensation is calculated on the basis of how many times the book has been borrowed.

According to the relevant law (2003), Value Added Tax (VAT) on books and periodicals is 5%, and teaching materials are freed from the tax altogether. In general, the VAT is 18%.

According to the Cultural Endowment of Estonia Act (1994), the state-owned Endowment is comprised of nine departments, one of which gives grants for literature (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1.2). The Estonian Academy of Sciences may elect eminent writers or artists as its members.

Estonia/ 5.3 Sector specific legislation

5.3.5 Architecture and environment

The Environmental Planning Act (2002) defines the terms and procedures of community planning. It specifies more rigid requirements for planning within areas that are protected by the Heritage Conservation Act (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.3.3) or by the Environment Protection Act (2004). It also introduces the term "built areas of environmental value" (miljööväärtuslikud hoonestusalad), but unlike in the case of historical monuments, it does not put any detailed obligations on the municipalities with reference to these areas of environmental value.

According to the Cultural Endowment of Estonia Act (1994), the state-owned Endowment is comprised of nine departments, one of which gives grants for architecture and research on architecture (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1.2).

Estonia/ 5.3 Sector specific legislation

5.3.6 Film, video and photography

There are no specific laws concerned with film. Estonia has ratified the European Convention on Transfrontier Television and the European Convention on Cinematographic Co-Production.

According to the Cultural Endowment of Estonia Act, the state-owned Endowment is comprised of nine departments, one of which gives grants for audiovisual arts (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 2.2 and http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1.2).

Another arm's length body, The Estonian Film Foundation, was created by a Government Decree in May, 1997, to support and promote the development of Estonian national film culture.

Estonia/ 5.3 Sector specific legislation

5.3.7 Culture industries

The sector of the culture industries, as a whole, is not regulated by any comprehensive framework legislation.

Tax measures are the main legislative instrument available to support the culture industries (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.1.5). For example, VAT for books was lowered to 5% in 1998, instead of the regular 18%. Until amendments were made in 2002 in the Value Added Tax Act, concerts organised by certain producers listed by the Ministry of Culture were exempt from paying VAT. Since then, they are charged a VAT rate of 5% for concerts organised by a producer who has previously received public financial support amounting to at least 10% of its budget. However, this provision is under review (see http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.1.5).

Donations for certain non-governmental organisations and public cultural and educational institutions can be deduced from taxable income up to a certain limit.

Licences for private broadcasters are issued by the Ministry of Culture. Within the Ministry there is a Broadcasting Licence Committee consisting of the representatives of different authorities who make recommendations to the Minister.

For the time being the audiovisual sector is regulated by three bodies: the Ministry of Culture, the National Board of Communications, and the Broadcasting Council. The latter is a supervisory body over public-service functions of broadcasting companies. It consists of nine members appointed by the Parliament. The National Board of Communications is responsible for issues concerned with transmission technology, and the Ministry of Culture is responsible for the rest. In this context, a Department of Media and Copyright Issues has been established in the Ministry (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 2.1).

As was noted in http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.3.6, The Estonian Film Foundation was created by Government Decree in May 1997 to support and promote the development of Estonian national film culture.

Estonia/ 5.3 Sector specific legislation

5.3.8 Mass media

The only publishing house remaining in state property is the state-owned non-profit foundation Kultuurileht, which publishes 13 different cultural and educational periodicals. During the 1990s, the number of cultural weeklies and magazines did not diminish, but the circulation of most went down. Professionally-edited cultural sections are included in two nation-wide dailies and one weekly magazine. Altogether, there are seven nation-wide daily papers with a total circulation of around 219 200. The major part of the media market - both printed and the privately owned electronic media - is presently governed by large Swedish and Norwegian media corporations.

The basic document regulating the audio-visual media in Estonia is the 1994 Broadcasting Act (latest amendment in 2007), containing all the requirements of the EU Television without Frontiers Directive and the European Convention on Transfrontier Television.

Estonian public service broadcasting consists of Estonian Television - ETV (Eesti Televisioon) and Estonian Radio - ER (Eesti Raadio), which broadcasts programmes on five channels. In January 2007, the government merged the two companies that were separated in 1990, in order to yield savings. In 2006, there were 32 radio broadcasters operating in Estonia, of which 5 are public and 27 are private. 11 broadcasters function on the basis of a licence with permission for programmes with local coverage, 16 on the basis of a regional licence, 4 are in possession of a national licence, and one is operating on the basis of an international licence. As for television, there are two major commercial TV broadcasters: TV3 (the licence was issued in 2004 and will be valid till 2009) and Kanal 2 (licence issued in 2004 and valid till 2009). They cover the majority of the territory of Estonia and operate on the basis of a national licence. One broadcasting company (ALO TV) is operating on a local licence. The major private TV channels are owned by Swedish and Norwegian companies.

According to the Broadcasting Act (1994), the main functions of the national broadcasting companies are:

Amendments to the Broadcasting Act that came into force on 1 July 2002 put the financing of public service broadcasting on a more stable and firm basis. Allocations from the state budget to ETV and ER are planned in advance for a period of three years according to a development strategy approved by the Parliament.

The Broadcasting Act applies to all broadcasters established in Estonia. The quotas in the current Act regulate:

Estonia/ 5.3 Sector specific legislation

5.3.9 Legislation for self-employed artists

The legal framework for self-employed artists has been recently created by the adoption of the Act on Creative Artists and Creative Artists' Unions, which entered into force on 1 January 2005 (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1.3). It grants freelance artists the right to receive tax deductions from the income earned by creative work, in correspondence to documented outcomes related to their creative work. It also includes the right to income averaging over several years. Even before the new legislation, these rights were applicable to artists who have registered themselves as individual entrepreneurs. In addition, the new law guarantees income supports equalling the Estonian minimum wage up to a period of six months for freelance artists lacking other income (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.1.4). The new legislation gives the associations of cultural workers, or the so-called Creative Unions, the responsibility of defining the persons and types of income that are eligible for these benefits.

For more information, see our Status of Artists section.

Estonia/ 5.3 Sector specific legislation

5.3.10 Other areas of relevant legislation

See also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 7.3 and http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.4.1 regarding legislation concerning not-for-profit activities.

 

Estonia/ 6. Financing of culture

6.1 Short overview

Despite the fact that several state-financed sectors - such as health care, social welfare and education - have recently experienced serious economic constraints, culture has been able to retain its share of the state budget.

State expenditure on culture is channeled mainly through the Ministry of Culture and the amount budgeted for 2007 was EEK 2 402.7 million (153.6 million euro). This figure includes the expenditure of the Estonian Cultural Endowment (EEK 286.9 million or 18.3 million euros) and the state investment programme.

In 2006, the total expenditure by central government amounted to EEK 2 106.6 million (134.6 million euro); the regional and municipal figures for 2006 are not yet available. In 2005, cultural expenditure at local government level was EEK 1 014.5 million (64.8 million euro), which corresponded to 35.6% of the total public sector spending in this field.

Estonia/ 6. Financing of culture

6.2 Public cultural expenditure per capita

Public culture expenditure per capita in Estonia, in 2005, was EEK 2 189 or 139.9 euro. This figure corresponded to 1.7% of the GDP.

Estonia/ 6. Financing of culture

6.3 Public cultural expenditure broken down by level of government

Table 3:     Public cultural expenditure: by level of government, in million EEK and million euros, 2005

Level of government

Total
in million EEK

Total
in million euros

% share
of total

State

1 780.1

113.8

62.6

Regional

50.5

3.2

1.8

Local (municipal)

1 014.5

64.8

35.6

Total

2 845.1

181.8

100

Source:      Estonian Ministry of Culture, 2007

Estonia/ 6. Financing of culture

6.4 Sector breakdown

Table 4:     State cultural expenditure: by sector, in million EEK, 2006

Field / Domain
/ Sub-domain

Transfers (to institutions)

Transfers
(to other
levels of
government)

Total, million EEK

Total,
million euros

% share
of total

Cultural Goods

352.3

79.4

431.7

27.6

20.5

Cultural Heritage

255.5

37.3

292.8

18.7

 

Historical Monuments

51.7

16.3

68.0

4.3

 

Museums

203.8

21.0

224.8

14.4

 

Libraries

96.8

42.1

138.9

8.9

 

Arts

398.1

99.7

497.8

31.8

23.6

Visual Arts
(including design)

 

6.2

6.2

0.4

 

Performing Arts

398.1

93.5

491.6

31.4

 

Music

128.8

14.2

143.0

9.1

 

Theatre and Musical Theatre

269.3

79.3

348.6

22.3

 

Media

357.2

73.7

430.9

27.5

20.5

Books and Press

-

18.3

18.3

1.2

 

Books

 

5.4

5.4

0.3

 

Press

 

12.9

12.9

0.8

 

Audio, Audiovisual and Multimedia

357.2

55.4

412.6

26.4

 

Cinema

 

55.4

55.4

3.5

 

Radio

114.6

-

114.6

7.3

 

Television

242.6

-

242.6

15.5

 

Other

27.1

719.1

746.2

47.7

35.4

Interdisciplinary

-

17.8

17.8

1.1

 

Socio-cultural

-

4.9

4.9

0.3

 

Cultural Relations Abroad

-

10.7

10.7

0.7

 

Educational Activities

-

2.2

2.2

0.1

 

Not allocable by domain (incl. Estonian Cultural Endowment)

27.1

 

701.3

728.4

46.6

 

Total

1 134.7

971.9

2 106.6

134.6

100

Source:      Estonian Ministry of Culture.

Table 5:     Monitoring State cultural expenditure: by sector, in million EEK, in %, 2002-2006

Year

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Cultural Exp.

1 169.4

1 333.4

1 557

1 780.1

2 106.6

Field

% of total

% of total

% of total

% of total

% of total

Cultural Goods

18.3

22.5

21.8

19.7

20.5

Arts

26.6

29.9

26.3

25.3

23.6

Media

23.2

26.2

22.2

21.0

20.5

Other

31.9

21.4

29.7

34.0

35.4

Total

100

100

100

100

100

Source:      Estonian Ministry of Culture; percentages for 2002-2005 calculated from the previous versions of the Estonian Compendium Profile.

Estonia/ 7. Cultural institutions and new partnerships

7.1 Re-allocation of public responsibilities

The most dramatic changes in the re-organisation of culture occurred between 1988 and 1995, when a move towards privatisation or désetatisation of cultural activities took place. This was supported by an ideological climate of liberalism that dominated political life during Independence. The major motives behind the privatisation of culture were, however, economic rather than ideological. The overall monetarist principles of designing the state budget forced it to withdraw from some activities which it previously financed. Many of the privatised companies - especially cinemas - were forced to close down due to economic difficulties. A recovery has only recently begun. This was one of the factors resulting in an overall declining trend in cultural consumption and participation that was visible especially during the early 1990s. At the same time, the business sector has not yet been very active in promoting culture. In a way, the greatest "sponsors" of culture have been the individual artists, who continue their professional work, although they are often forced to finance it by earning an income outside the cultural field.

 

Estonia/ 7. Cultural institutions and new partnerships

7.2 Status/role and development of major cultural institutions

Some of the major cultural institutions have managed to establish themselves as "national" institutions, and thus claim priority positions in the allocation of state resources; for example the National Library and the Estonia Theatre (National Opera). Although the Estonian Drama Theatre does not have the official status of a "national" institution, it has nevertheless been financed more favourably than other theatres.

All cultural institutions are affected by budget cuts and the situation is even more difficult for private institutions which lack an official status. To some extent, support is derived from, e.g., the Estonian Cultural Endowment, the Council for Gambling Taxes and the Foundation for National Culture. The latter, founded in 1991, by the government and turned into a private foundation in 1994, has been continuously able to attract funding from domestic private and corporate donors. There has been a considerable reduction in the amount of funding distributed by the Council for Gambling Taxes as a result of the 2002 decision to use a large share of the money to finance the construction of the new Museum of Arts. It is suspected that this decision has reduced the possibilities of non-established artists and institutions to obtain support.

Estonia/ 7. Cultural institutions and new partnerships

7.3 Emerging partnerships or collaborations

Most of the resources in the cultural sector still come from the state and the local governments. Those resources which are available have been used for the preservation of existing cultural institutions (e.g. libraries, theatres). This has left little resources for public-private co-operation.

A foundation has been established jointly by the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Culture and three central organisations of amateur arts groups to organise the National Song and Dance Festival - a major cultural event occurring every five years (the last one in 2004).

The private business sector has not yet shown any major interest in sponsoring culture. Nevertheless, private individuals who have come into possession of historically valuable buildings have gradually started to be more conscious about the specific requirements for their renovation and use.

Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) have powerfully enhanced the diversity of cultural life. During the past 12 years, their activities have been comprised of international co-operation, the production of festivals, contemporary dance, information centres, and the running of small theatre companies. There are about ten independent theatres in Estonia. Several of them have gained a respected position in the performing arts scene: the theatre groups Von Krahl, VAT, and Theatrum have established themselves as a part of the professional theatre field in Estonia.

In the year 2000, new principles of distributing state funding to theatres have been introduced: financing is based on the number of spectators attending the theatre. Though in the first year this principle did not demonstrate any substantial shift, it has nevertheless allowed some funds to be allocated for independent theatres.

The NGO cultural sector receives some support from the state and especially from local governments. However, the sector is not yet a resourceful actor in its own right and its relations with the public and business sectors are sometimes coloured with misunderstanding and distrust. A document called the Conception for the Development of Civil Society in Estonia (reminiscent of e.g., the British Contracts on Relations between government and the Voluntary and Community Sector) was adopted by the Parliament in December, 2002. This document is aimed at highlighting good practices in inter-sectoral partnerships, but its exact mechanisms of implementation are still being developed by a joint commission of government and NGO representatives, whose work started in September 2003.

Estonia/ 8. Support to creativity and participation

8.1 Direct and indirect support to artists

Support to creative activity has mainly been channelled through arm's length bodies, such as the Cultural Endowment of Estonia (which is divided between nine councils, of which eight represent different branches of culture and one is inter-disciplinary) and the Council for Gambling Taxes. They grant both support for projects and individual grants (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 2.2). A new basic income support scheme for freelance artists lacking other income was introduced in 2005 by the Act on Creative Artists and Creative Artists' Unions. The scheme is to be administered by the creative unions (seehttp://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gif chapter 8.1.3).

Indirect support is provided through programmes to purchase works of art for museums and public buildings from Estonian artists. A visiting artist programme has been launched for a rotating composer-in-residence. The University of Tartu has founded a rotating professorship in the arts.

Estonia/ 8.1 Direct and indirect support to artists

8.1.1 Special artists funds

Provisions in the Act on Creative Artists and Creative Artists' Unions (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.3.9) generates state subsidies for artists unions (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.1.3), and includes a framework for guaranteed income support and social and health insurance for freelance artists.

The current legislation on Pensions Related to Term of Service (1992) grants musicians, actors, and other performing employees of concert organisations the right to retire after 20-25 years of professional activity, but does not introduce any specific pensions fund for this purpose.

Compensation is paid from the state budget to authors of books borrowed from public libraries in amounts based on the frequency of borrowing. A non-governmental organisation, the Association of Estonian Authors (Eesti Autorite Ühing) has been granted the right of representing composers and songwriters in collecting and distributing the levies for public performance of music. As to the vehicles and mediums for private recording of music and audiovisual materials, a levy of 3% of the net value of recordings and 6% of that of blank cassettes, disks etc. is collected and redistributed between representatives of authors, performers, and cultural industries (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.1.7).

Estonia/ 8.1 Direct and indirect support to artists

8.1.2 Grants, awards, scholarships

Since 1999, six state cultural awards have been granted yearly "for outstanding artistic accomplishments" in different fields of culture by the Government of the Republic based on proposals made by a separate Committee chaired by the Minister of Culture. Twenty cultural grants are awarded yearly for artistic projects or professional studies by a directive of the Minister. Even legal persons and establishments are eligible for these grants.

Most of the existing grants are administered by state-run foundations - the Cultural Endowment of Estonia and the Council for Gambling Taxes (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 2.2). The larger of the two, the Cultural Endowment of Estonia, is divided between departments for Architecture, Film, Fine Arts, Theatre, Music, Literature, Folk Art, Sports, and Inter-disciplinary Culture. The Councils of the different departments are free to decide how to allocate their share of the resources and have adopted different practices in dividing the grants. Among the activities supported are studies, travels, concrete projects, in the form of individual grants that are given four times per year. In addition, prizes for outstanding creative works have been given (from 2002, two prizes yearly), as well as additional pensions for retired artists. The Board of the Endowment is chaired by the Minister of Culture, but it lacks any other form of official subordination to the Ministry or to other political bodies. On the other hand, the Council for Gambling Taxes includes politically nominated representatives and its decisions are prepared by the relevant ministries.

Estonia/ 8.1 Direct and indirect support to artists

8.1.3 Support to professional artists associations or unions

Currently, there are ten national associations for creative artists, among which the most important are:

Their total membership is around 3 500, including around 700 retired artists and 300 free-lancers. During recent years, the unions have increasingly started to act as trade unions guarding the economic and political interests of their profession.

The Cultural Endowment of Estonia is the main body that distributes public subsidies to professional artists' unions. The new Act on Creative Artists and Creative Artists' Unions (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.3.9) introduces an additional source of government funding. It sets the yearly subsidies for the unions to be calculated by multiplying one average monthly wage in Estonia by the number of the members of the respective union. However, the income support for freelance artists provided for by the same act has to be paid from the same amount; the subsidies then remaining can be used by the union for the financing of other types of grants for study and creative work. The legislation provides tax benefits, a guaranteed minimum income, and social and health insurance for freelance artists for a limited period.

Estonia/ 8.2 Cultural consumption and participation

8.2.1 Trends and figures

The introduction of political democracy, freedom of speech, market economy, and political independence during the revolutionary period from 1988 to 1991, profoundly changed the role of cultural life in society. From having been fulfilling political and compensatory functions, cultural life lost some of the appeal it had gained due to the specific circumstances of the Soviet regime. The change was reflected by statistics on the population's participation in cultural life. Most indicators show a sharp decline around 1992-1993, and after that, a stabilisation or slow revival. It should be noted however, that despite the overall decline, the average level of cultural participation in Estonia is still relatively high in international comparison. This is confirmed by the results of a survey commissioned by the Ministry of Culture and conducted in 2003 and 2006, and by similar results from a survey conducted by the Statistical Office of Estonia in 2004. According to the survey respondents, high prices of cultural services and the geographical distance along with problems in organising transportation are the main obstacles for more active participation in cultural life. The findings also suggested that a steep decline in participation has taken place during the last ten years; this conclusion is nevertheless, not supported by trends in participation statistics (see Table 6 below). The problem may be, however, that some social groups have become increasingly marginalised both with respect to their participation in cultural activities, and to their consumption of culture products. According to results from other surveys, this particularly concerns elderly people outside the capital and provincial centres. There also seems to be great variance in consumption levels between different income groups. Large communities of non-Estonian people (mainly Russian speakers) have become more alienated from cultural life than ethnic Estonians, with the exception of some fields of culture (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 4.2.1).

A fragmentation of the population into active and non-active participants in cultural life seems to have taken place. Although this growing inequality of opportunities for participation in cultural life has been recognised by cultural policy decision-makers, they lack the instruments to counteract this trend, which is more a direct result of the overall development of society than a matter of cultural policy.

Table 6:     Participation in cultural life: selected indicators, selected years 1990-2005

Indicators

1990

1996

2000

2005

2006

2006

(per capita)

Registered users of public libraries (thousands)

417.3

387.4

449.5

439.7

411.3

0.31

Library units lent (millions)

8.9

13.6

14.0

11.7

10.7

7.96

Museum attendance (thousands)

1 940

1 145

1 539

1 762

1 883

1.40

Theatre attendance (thousands; from 1996 including private theatres)

1 242

960

921

843

922

0.69

Cinema attendance (millions)

10.9

1.0

1.1

1.1

1.6

1.19

Publishing of books and pamphlets (millions of copies)

18.9

6.7

5.9

6.0

7.3

5.43

Use of Internet during last 6 months, % of population aged 15-74

...

...

23.2

59.2

61.2

..

Watching television by population aged 15-74, hours and minutes daily*

...

...

4:14

4:06

...

..

Sources:    Figures provided by the Ministry of Culture and the Statistical Office of Estonia; Peeter Vihalemm(ed.) (2004): Meediasüsteem ja meediakasutus Eestis 1965-2004. Tartu: Tartu Ülikooli Kirjastus; marketing research and consulting company TNS Emor, http://www.emor.ee
*                 In 2004-5, population from the age of 4 is included.

Estonia/ 8.2 Cultural consumption and participation

8.2.2 Policies and programmes

Estonian professional theatres have a tradition of organising performances in provincial towns. As theatres have become more economically dependent on income from ticket sales, they make efforts to reach a larger audience by widening their repertoire; especially since 2000 (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 7.3).

During the past five years, several new summer festivals were created outside the large cities. They received financial support from state bodies.

The programme of renovating schools located in historical manor buildings includes the creation of multi-functional centres for local cultural life. In this case, there are possibilities for co-operation between the state, local governments and local NGOs.

Museums have developed new strategies of attracting visitors, including children and adolescents. On the one hand, they seek to renew their exhibitions and to co-operate with tourism information centres. On the other hand, they have established education and outreach departments and they organise thematic events and scientific conferences which are open for the public. On the last day of every month public museums can be visited free of charge.

Estonia/ 8.3 Arts and cultural education

8.3.1 Arts education

The educational institutions function either as state bodies, state-owned public bodies, municipal institutions or private (non-profit or for-profit) organisations. They are all supervised by the Ministry of Education and Research. Education in culture is available on all educational levels. The Bologna process has, hitherto, mainly been understood within educational policies as suggesting a certain structure of higher education (3 years for a BA, 2 years for an MA, and 4 years for PhD studies; or the so-called "3+2+4 model"). The new examination system was initiated in 2001, and it has, by now, been adopted in all institutions of higher education. It has caused educational planners to advocate two specific objectives that for many university teachers seem difficult to be combined; namely, graduates from the 3-year BA education should on one hand be sufficiently competent in one specific sphere of study in order to possess enough competence to enter the labour market as professionals; while at the same time they should have a wide enough knowledge of other related subjects so as to enable them to enter MA studies in, not necessarily the same subject, but in another subject that belongs to the same wider field of study (e.g., humanities, arts, social sciences, etc). Another problem is that the MA and PhD level of education attracts much fewer students than originally was expected. The Ministry of Education and Science finances the studies of a certain number of students, specified according to university and field of studies; the universities are entitled to enrol additional fee-paying students. 

In addition to Tallinn (capital of Estonia), higher arts education is available in Viljandi and Tartu. There are two public universities (Estonian Academy of Arts; Estonian Academy of Music) and one public professional high school (Tartu Higher School of Arts) specialised in the education of professional artists, actors and musicians. In the town of Pärnu, a professional high school of visual arts, originally created by private initiative, was merged with the Estonian Academy of Arts in 2001, and was closed down in 2004.

In addition, there are two public universities (the Tallinn University - until May 2005, the Pedagogical University of Tallinn; the University of Tartu) that have departments for professional education in the arts, music, and theatre. Viljandi Academy of Culture - previously called Viljandi Cultural College - was a professional high school until 2005, when it was merged with the University of Tartu as a regional college located in the town of Viljandi. As the privately run Concordia International University was closed down in 2003, its education programme in audiovisual media was taken over by the independent Audentes University (Tallinn). One independent university (the Estonian Institute of Humanities) ceased the education of professional actors in 2004, and was merged with the Tallinn University in May, 2005. Finally, four independent institutions teach arts at the diploma and BA levels (ISCED97 5A-5B), but have not passed the official accreditation process organised by the Higher Education Accreditation Centre of the Ministry of Education. In 2006, the total number of students at the diploma and applied higher education level (ISCED97 5B) in this field was 756, the number of students on the BA and MA levels (ISCED97 5A) was 2 327, and there were 66 PhD candidates (ISCED97 6). The two last figures increased from the previous year.

In recent years, higher education in the field of cultural management has been available in several different institutions in Estonia. In the fall term of 2002, diploma studies (ISCED97 5B level) became available in a public professional high school (Viljandi Academy of Culture). The teaching of MA curricula (ISCED97 5A) started in 2002-2003 in three different public universities, two in Tallinn (Estonian Academy of Music, Tallinn University) and one in Tartu (University of Tartu). Previous efforts by the Estonian national committee of UNESCO to channel the initiative in this field into co-ordinated action were, so far, not successful. The two cultural management curricula operating in Tallinn underwent an official accreditation process in 2005.

Music and arts are part of the curricula of primary and secondary schools. In 2004, there were 97 amateur schools for children, providing education in music and fine arts outside the ordinary school curricula. The number includes only municipal schools. Their number is growing rapidly due to an increasing interest from parents. A fee of about EEK 200 (13 euros) per month is usually charged; this fee may be deduced from the parent's taxable income. Previously oriented towards the aim of selecting and preparing children for professional musical careers, the children's music schools have increasingly adopted a wider view of their role in the overall development of the children's personality. However, according to a survey of teachers and school principals in 2004, vastly differing views on the aims and methods of education still exist among the school staff.

The involvement with arts in education, from the perspectives of advocacy and policy development, is a fairly new phenomenon. The year 2005 was dedicated to Visual Art, with a special emphasis on education programmes for art schools and cultural institutions. Within the Ministry of Culture, plans exist to organise a system of basic and supplementary education for teachers of amateur schools. In general, supplementary education for cultural workers is organised by a separate institution governed by the Ministry of Culture, namely, the Centre for Development and Education in Folk Culture.

Estonia/ 8.3 Arts and cultural education

8.3.2 Intercultural education

Intercultural education is part of the civic education course ("individual and society") in Estonian schools, and is aimed at promoting the understanding of cultural differences. The course is obligatory from the 4th grade upwards. The actual content of the course is dependent on the teaching materials, upon which each school makes its own decision, and on the teacher. A 2006 Government Decree on Educational Standards is aimed, partially, at furthering and supporting the participation in education of pupils with different mother tongues and cultural backgrounds, and urges schools to create possibilities for the study of their mother tongue. Some cultural institutions, like the Art Museum of Estonia and the Museum of History, have created special units for working on public integration programmes and tackle related issues in heritage interpretation.

Primary education is available in Estonian and Russian. Although the Law on Education states that Estonian is the language of tuition in publicly run secondary schools, the implementation of the law has not yet been started and a number of schools continue to teach in Russian (see http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 4.2.3).

For more information, see our Intercultural Dialogue section

Estonia/ 8.4 Amateur arts, cultural associations and community centres

8.4.1 Amateur arts

Estonia has a long tradition of association activities. Some of the most important cultural institutions (notably the Estonia Theatre) were originally launched as private initiatives. During Soviet rule, cultural associations and amateur arts groups played an important role in the preservation of cultural traditions and as an opposition against foreign rule. The Act on Non-Profit Organisations and Foundations (1996) provides associations with a clear legislative framework. They have the right to apply for a public benefit status with the corresponding tax benefits (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 5.1.5). The adoption in 2002 by the Parliament of a document called the Conception for the Development of Civil Society in Estonia (see also http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 7.3) is expected to have the effect of making the project-funding and grant-making practices of the central and local governments more transparent and, thus, reducing the possibility of arbitrary decisions.

It is difficult to calculate the number of arts and cultural associations in Estonia. Research evidence suggests that the NGO sector is less focused on cultural activities than before. By late 2007, a total of 3 798 NGOs dealing with culture, sports, and recreation were registered in Estonia. However, experiences from organisational surveys indicate that the real number of organisations active is much lower. The Cultural Endowment has a separate department to support folk culture. In general, direct state financing for folk culture activities is channelled through 7 umbrella organisations. While the funds are easier to administer via these umbrella organisations, there are questions being raised about the possibility of those "non-member" associations to receive project grants. A possibility that has been recently discussed between NGO representatives and the government is the establishment of an arm's length body, possibly a state-owned foundation, with the task of administering financial support for NGOs.

Estonia/ 8.4 Amateur arts, cultural associations and community centres

8.4.2 Cultural houses and community cultural clubs

The role of community cultural centres is rather unclear at the moment. During the Soviet regime they were mostly maintained by collective farms and state-owned employers. The privatisation of the economy and agriculture in the early 1990s caused some of the cultural centres to be closed down while others were turned over to the municipalities. Local governments have varying economic resources and are not always able to maintain the buildings and furnish them with activities. That means that the cultural centres have been forced to become economically more self-reliant and to introduce higher fees for participation in their activities. There is a tendency of establishing "cultural factories" (clusters established in previous factory buildings and run by non-profit organisations, which are transformed into working and performing places for artists, musicians, craftsmen, printing houses, recording studios, etc.), to meet better the needs of interdisciplinary arts and engage young audiences. Two cultural factories, Kultuurikatel and Cultural Factory Polymer in Tallinn, are both in their initial phase of development and have been generously supported by the City of Tallinn. Two other cultural factories are planned for Tartu and Viljandi.

As mentioned in http://www.culturalpolicies.net/web/icons/intern.gifchapter 8.3, the state-initiated programme to renovate schools located in historical manor buildings supports the re-creation of multi-functional centres for local cultural life. The practice of creating official co-operation between friendship municipalities in Estonia and the Nordic countries has provided Estonian local governments with new ideas and often with material support.

Estonia/ 9. Sources and Links

9.1 Key documents on cultural policy

Council of Europe: Cultural policy in Estonia: national report on cultural policy in Estonia and its impact 1988-95 and report by a European panel of examiners.  Strasbourg: Council of Europe Publishing, 1997 (ISBN 92-871-3165-1).
The volume includes an Estonian report prepared by Mikko Lagerspetz and Rein Raud, and the report by a European panel of examiners. 

Estonian Ministry of Culture: Cultural Acts. Tallinn: Ministry of Culture, 1999. 
Collection of culture-related legal acts in English, most of which are also available on the Internet site of the Ministry (http://www.kul.ee).

An Internet portal including English translations of law texts is maintained by the Estonian Legal Language Centre and located in http://www.legaltext.ee/indexen.htm.

When discussing issues on the statuses of minorities and immigrants, the authors of this report have cited two recent publications, which can be consulted for more details:

Lagerspetz, Mikko: "Active Civic Participation of Immigrants in Estonia", in: Research report for the research project POLITIS, 2005. Available at http://www.uni-oldenburg.de/politis-europe/download/Estonia.pdf

Lagerspetz, Mikko & Sofia Joons: "Tallinn as a Multicultural City: Structures, initiatives, debate" in: Ilczuk, Dorota & Isar, Yudhishthir Raj (eds.): Metropolis of Europe. Warsaw: Pro Cultura Foundation, 2006.

Estonia/ 9. Sources and Links

9.2 Key organisations and portals

Cultural policy making bodies

Estonian Ministry of Culture 
http://www.kul.ee

The English-speaking section of the Ministry's website 
http://www.kul.ee/index.php?lang=en

Professional associations

Estonian Authors' Union
http://www.eauthors.ee

Estonian Architects' Union
http://www.arhliit.ee

Estonian Artists' Association
http://www.eaa.ee

Estonian Writers' Association
http://www.ekl.ee

Grant-giving bodies

Council for Gambling Taxes
http://hmn.riik.ee/

Cultural Endowment of Estonia 
http://veeb.kulka.ee/index.php?path=226

Estonian Foundation for National Culture 
http://www.erkf.ee

Archimedes Foundation
http://www.archimedes.ee/

Cultural research and statistics

Estonian Institute 
http://www.einst.ee

Estonian Institute of Humanities, Tallinn University 
http://www.ehi.ee

Statistical Office of Estonia
http://www.stat.ee

Culture / arts portals

Estonica: Culture
http://www.estonica.org/eng/teema.html?kateg=41

Database for Estonian Museums
http://www.muuseum.ee/

Centre for Contemporary Arts, Estonia
http://www.cca.ee

Estonian Literature Information Centre
http://www.estlit.ee

Estonian Film Foundation
http://www.efsa.ee/

Estonian Institute 
http://www.einst.ee

Estonian Music Information Centre
http://www.emic.kul.ee

Database of Estonian Music
http://www.estmusic.com/

Estonian Theatre Information Centre
http://www.estoniantheatre.info

Kunstiserver (Arts Server)
http://www.art.ee

Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Estonia's representations around the world
http://www.vm.ee/eng/kat_150/

 


The Council of Europe/ERICarts "Compendium of Cultural Policies and Trends in Europe, 9th edition", 2008