8.8 Synergies and partnerships
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It is a cornerstone in Danish cultural policy to cooperate closely with the relevant actors in the field in order to achieve synergies. The synergies comprise:
- A stronger local feeling of ownership of projects and institutions supported by the state.
- A better understanding of the challenges and possibilities arising from the dialogue between the different actors.
- A better chance of achieving the overall political goal of providing access to culture and cultural experiences to all parts of the population, including young people.
An example of such synergy is the project School Services (Skoletjenesten), which is financed by the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Children and Education.
The objective of School Services is to qualify and disseminate the use of external learning environments among Danish education institutions.
School Services cooperates with cultural institutions to develop academic teaching environments that help children and young people develop as active democratic citizens. School Services builds on partnerships with cultural institutions and local authorities to develop, offer and share knowledge of teaching in external learning environments with a focus on nature, culture and art.
School Services ensures that the teaching provided by cultural institutions is of a high quality and offers children and young people forms of learning not available in their schools.
School Services collates and generates knowledge in teaching and learning labs and deploys it in teaching and in partnerships with other stakeholders. School Services involves teachers and students in this process and works with schools, local authorities, educational institutions and other national stakeholders.
In April 2020, the government and all parties in the Danish parliament settled an agreement on initiatives to support socially marginalised people and people with fewer opportunities/special needs.
The agreement focuses on three groups in society. Socially marginalised and vulnerable children and young people constitute one of the three groups. The three groups are severely affected by the covid-19 restrictions, and their social and mental problems are enhanced due to the lockdown of society. Therefore, increased measures are needed.
The agreement has three main elements:
- To establish three cross-sectoral partnerships between civil society, public authorities, cultural institutions and interest organisations with a special knowledge of the target groups.
- Initiatives targeting the three groups.
- Continue activities in the social area that have been locked down in the spring 2020.
The partnership objective is to ensure that the three target groups feel secure/safe during the coronavirus outbreak in Denmark and the subsequent lockdown of society, and to alleviate loneliness, vulnerability and inability to thrive.
The three partnerships must:
- identify challenges and come up with solutions.
- be open to new cooperation and ensure the inclusion of relevant local partners.
- develop a strategy to fight loneliness in the target groups during the coronavirus outbreak.
- Share best practice on a new portal run by the National Board of Social Services under the Ministry of Social Affairs and Senior Citizens .
DKK 0.75 million has been allocated to the three partnerships. The partnerships exist until society has reopened.
Three actors within the area of culture and creativity are invited to participate in the partnership for socially marginalised children and young people:
The Danish Library Association (Danmarks biblioteksforening): An organisation that lobbies for libraries, in particular public libraries. Its mission is to campaign for free and equal access to information, knowledge and cultural experiences at the local level.
National network of School Services: A knowledge centre under the Ministry of Culture and Ministry of Children and Education working to disseminate knowledge on learning in culture institutions.
The Association of Danish Museums (Organisationen Danske Museer): The leading voice for the museum sector in Denmark, representing 172 museums, visitor centres and conservation centres.
The rest of the organisations in the partnership are organisations representing civil society, social work, youth, sport and interest organisations representing local and regional government.
The Ministry of Culture cooperates closely with the municipalities, for instance on the funding of local cultural institutions such as music schools, museums, and theatres. The Ministry of Culture also cooperates closely with civil society actors, for instance in connection with the funding of voluntary associations. The synergy obtained via these partnerships is a more focused and effective use of resources in order to obtain the overall Danish political goal of giving all young people (and also all other parts of the population) access to culture. The Strategy for Young People's Encounter with Art and Culture (see section 8.3) was to a large degree designed to further the collaboration between the relevant players in the area, including the municipalities, the cultural institutions, and also self-organised young people.