what was at stake
green position
what we achieved
what we did not achieve

The cultural dimension of the EU's external relations

As the European External Action Service (EEAS - the European equivalent of a ministry of foreign affairs) evolves, the EU needs to add a cultural dimension to its external relationships and international exchanges.


What was the Greens' position?

The Greens believe that cultural policy is best implemented in a spirit of cooperation through exchanges of good practices rather than via diplomacy or a strategy designed to promote European culture abroad.

Consequently, in our view EU policy in this domain should be based on existing international guidelines, like the UNESCO Convention on the Promotion and Protection of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions.

Thus, diversity and true exchanges must remain core elements of any international cultural strategies developed by the EU.


Did other MEPs accept the Greens' position?

The Greens succeeded in sharpening the focus of the document, which contained a number of newly invented concepts in its initial version, like 'digital diplomacy'.

We also proposed a preparatory action designed to map out what needs to be done to promote culture in the EU's external exchanges.

This process is ongoing and should yield its first results by the end of 2013


Which points did the Greens lose?

Overall, the Greens were satisfied with the result of the negotiations.

Since education and culture are largely national competences and the EU only serves as a facilitator between the Member States, conflict over issues in these domains is rare.

Press & Events

Procedure:Own-initiative procedure


Lead MEP:Marietje Schaake (ALDE)

Green MEP responsible:Malika Benarab-Attou


Staff contact:Frédérique Chabaud (Email)