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EU PolicyWatch

Database of national-level policy measures

Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure EU-2021-19/1919 – measures in European Union

Post-COVID Cultural Recovery in the EU: Policy Recommendations

Country European Union , applies eu-wide (or beyond)
Time period Open ended, started on 04 May 2021
Context COVID-19
Type Non-binding recommendations or other texts
Category Measures to prevent social hardship
– Protection of vulnerable groups (beyond employment support)
Author Barbara Surdykowska and Eurofound
Measure added 17 June 2021 (updated 29 June 2021)

Background information

Culture Action Europe (CAE) presented the recommendations to improve the situation and working conditions of artists and cultural workers in the EU. According the CAE, the development of the European Framework introducing guidelines and principles for working conditions in the cultural and creative sectors and industries would not only help to establish minimum standards and minimum requirements across the EU but also address structural fragilities and inequities that were reinforced by the COVID-19 crisis. This would support the long term sustainability of these sectors during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. The recommendations aiming to support the work of the CULT Committee of the European Parliament on its own-initiative report on ‘The situation of artists and the cultural recovery in the EU.

The CAE was established in 1994. It is the major European network of cultural networks, organisations, artists, activists and academics aimed to maintain continuous dialogue and knowledge exchange between the cultural sector in Europe and EU policymakers.

Content of measure

The brief list of recommendations.

  • Addressing structural inequities throughout the European cultural ecosystem that imperil cultural diversity.
  • Mapping existing definitions of ‘artist’ and ‘cultural’ workers across Member States and establishing an inclusive wording thereof in EU document.
  • Establishing minimum standards and minimum requirements regarding fair working conditions, among others, through removing the existing competition law obstacles to collective agreements for self-employees.
  • Ensuring that social protection systems allow artists and cultural workers to access benefit schemes such as unemployment allowance and pensions.
  • Ensuring that artists and cultural workers have equal access to the EU Single Market.
  • Alignment funding policies and programmes to the needs of artists and cultural workers and to the specificities of their work and projects.
  • Improving the capacity of artists and cultural workers to benefit financially from the Intellectual Property Rights attached to their creation and performance.
  • Equally recognising multiple forms of artistic and cultural work including the activities that are not (or barely) monetised.
  • Providing increased and consistent information on mobility.
  • Providing access to lifelong education and training.
  • Addressing imbalances within the cultural and creative ecosystem in terms of gender, ethnicity, socio-economic background and other interrelated dimensions.
  • Providing political impetus to a European Framework for working conditions in the cultural and creative sectors and industries and the cultural recovery in the EU.

Use of measure

Artists and cultural workers in the EU.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Workers in non-standard forms of employment
Sector specific set of companies
Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
Social partners jointly
Other social actors (e.g. NGOs)
EU level social partners
EU (Council, EC, EP)
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Unknown Unknown
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Unknown
  • Main level of involvement: N/A


Social partners were not directly involved.

Views and reactions

The reactions of social partners are unknown up to date.

Sectors and occupations

    • Economic area Sector (NACE level 2)
      R - Arts, Entertainment And Recreation R90 Creative, arts and entertainment activities
    • Occupation (ISCO level 2)
      Legal, social and cultural professionals


  • 04 May 2021: The Situation of Artists and Cultural Workers and the post-COVID Cultural Recovery in the European Union : Policy Recommendations (


Eurofound (2021), Post-COVID Cultural Recovery in the EU: Policy Recommendations, measure EU-2021-19/1919 (measures in European Union), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.