Culture is a specific area that is defined as the activity of creating, exploring, disseminating and preserving cultural values, as well as the results of that activity.
In a narrow sense, culture encompasses cultural institutions, the arts, and activities related to them. Culture in a broad sense, generally related to man and human development, is an essential characteristic of the quality of life. In the current period of transition and accession to European structures, culture is increasingly establishing itself as an engine of the democratic process, the basis of civil society and a means of preserving national identity and enhancing cultural diversity.
Europe’s cultural and historical heritage is not only of national value but also part of Europe’s common cultural heritage. It consists of cultural monuments (real and movable) and intangible cultural heritage (living culture). Cultural heritage is an important resource for the sustainable socio-economic development of specialized forms of tourism.
The main problems in the sector are:
Low pay for employees;
Limiting the number of subsidized cultural institutions;
Lack of trained personnel in the field of cultural and art management;
Poor interaction with business and the development of public-private partnerships in the arts and culture.
The need for adequate state support for the cultural industries to enable their sustainable development and the specific conditions on the European cultural market;
Poor provision of cultural institutions with modern information and communication technologies;
Limited resource for the maintenance of cultural monuments, for research and conservation activities, for the maintenance of amateur art and art.
Developing cultural activities, and in particular new information technologies and cultural management, is promising for job creation. The number of graduates of secondary schools of arts and culture (which are under the Ministry of Culture) is between 800 and 1000, and of the higher art schools about 750.
The number of employed in this sector is 28 980. The development of libraries of regional importance, community libraries and research libraries can play an important role in education, the provision of information on a wide range of issues and, in this sense, lifelong learning for citizens, including in smaller settlements. These institutions also promote the inclusion and preservation of the cultural identity of minority communities.
The strengthening of the social role of the libraries as traditional cultural and educational centers in Europe is important for their modernization and participation in the development of the local community. The development of Internet Centers in the libraries provides information access in remote and backward areas and develops skills for the use of information technologies by the library teams and local communities.
Equal opportunities between men and women
Traditionally, the share of men in the workforce and their economic activity are higher. Data on economic activity by gender show a trend different from that observed in the European Union. For the period 20012005, there is a gradual increase in the gender gap, while in the EU there is a reverse trend of convergence.
The employment rate for men in 2005 was 60%, well below the EU average (70.9% in 2004). Following a particularly sharp fall in the employment rate for women, mainly in the first years of transition, the downward trend was reversed when in 2005 this level was 51.7%. However, this indicator remains low compared to the employment rate for men and women. with the average employment rate for women in the EU. (55.7% for 2004).
With the exception of 1993 and 1995, the female unemployment rate is similar or slightly lower than that of men. According to the data from the Labor Force Survey in 2005, the tendency for the unemployment rate among women to be lower (9.8%) than for men (10.3%). In EU countries, the unemployment rate for women is higher than for men. The EU average for 2004 is 10.2% for women and 8.1% for men. In this regard, BVOP started a campaign for management certification for unemployed people to increase the employment rate and potential for European citizens.
Maintaining in the future the relatively low level of differences in the rates of economic activity and employment of women and men in Europe requires a better orientation of social policies regarding equality between men and women. A separate set of requirements are those for improving the quality and widening access to childcare services and facilitating reconciliation of family life and professional careers.