Cultural Policy Handbook – Part 2. Accessibility of and participation in culture

The degree of accessibility of culture and involvement of culture’s consumers in the Slovakia’s cultural supply
(We search for the target group for the Slovak culture)

● Are Slovaks interested in culture?
● Do we offer what they want?
● Do we know exactly what they need?

Read our new Handbook, whete the ICP asks these questions and looks for the answers.

The Handbook Part 2 is a continuation of the ICP’s efforts to analyse the fundamental problems of cultural policy in Slovakia. It is a logical follow-up of the Handbook Part 1, in which we made an attempt to identify the problems of the current level of support for the “living” culture. Incredibly small numbers to which we have arrived led us to the problem of the population’s willingness and ability to participate not only in the current living culture.
As for macroeconomic indicators on the availability/accessibility and willingness to participate in culture Slovakia is always places itself in the bottom half of the rankings among the European states. There exists a tradition of visiting cultural events in Slovakia, although recent partial surveys point out that the trend is rapidly declining. However, people still have the desire to participate in the cultural life of the country. Therefore, we focused in particular on the barriers forming the main obstacle for Slovakia to get “more cultural”. Long working hours, lack of auxiliary structures for families, as well as high ticket prices relative to salaries are turn out to be the most important obstacles in the perception of the availability of cultural goods by Slovak citizens. We must state that our basic hypothesis has been partially confirmed. Partly because the rural population generally works in operation with less remuneration than the urban people, and increasingly prefers also during Weekends simple television programmes to organisationally complex trips to city cultural institutions, especially if commuting to the cities on working days. Here arises another problem concerning the use of the spacious, expensively built and poorly equipped “houses of culture” in rural settlements.

There are no other so-called “soft” data to allow a more detailed analysis of behavioural patterns of cultural event visitors. Neither the national survey of Market & Media & Lifestyle by TGI conducts such a detailed and information-loaded research to support the design of real strategies for cultural organisations. The private media sector considers this information as the alpha and omega, the direct determinant of its activities. There is no institute, a statistical office, or a part of the Ministry of Culture to collect and analyse such data. For that reason, interesting results of these partial studies are lost with no synergistic effect. They do not exist, we do not know what to do with them, we have no interest in accurate data based on by which we could not only write up but also make an informed and qualified cultural policy in Slovakia.

This fact is alarming and is one of the major obstacles encountered in the path of “Europeanisation” in the perception of the cultural sector’s tasks in Slovakia.

Full text oif the Handbook Part 2 (Slovak)

Download Handbook Part 2 in Slovak (Rukoväť kultúrnej politiky, časť 2)