8. Creativity and Culture
Cultural involvement is seen as an essential factor in the growth of young people's personalities, including the sense of belonging to local and global communities. The European Commission's (EC) involvement in cultural activities is associated with the development of active citizenship.
The ability and opportunity to realise young people's talents and to express creativity is an essential factor in acquiring the skills and knowledge necessary in the labor market. The European Commission puts great emphasis on the use of new technologies and new media as well as cooperation between the cultural and creative industries in order to provide young people with creative platforms. Particular emphasis is placed on the development of intercultural dialogue, promoting young people's tolerance, incl. social tolerance, openness to other cultures and traditions.
The European Agenda for Culture defines culture as a catalyst for creativity and innovation, as an essential contribution to regional development as a whole and to the development of certain sectors of the economy.
In 2009, the European Commission launched the "Access of Young People to Culture" study, which evaluated young people's opportunities and practices in cultural participation and analyzed examples of good practices in the EU Member States in promoting cultural activities. The study identified significant barriers to the participation of young people in culture - lack of finance, geographic availability, and lack of time. In turn, the possibilities of participation in cultural activities were mainly available through digitization and the use of new media.
In addition, it should be concluded that the creative and cultural theme as a permanent and independent policy direction is maintained only on the agenda in individual EU member states, mostly evaluating the topic of participation.
When it comes to young people in Latvia, they actively consume culture (as viewers/listeners), but they are less active in participating in cultural activities. Over the last five years, cultural consumption among young people has grown faster than participation in various other activities. Nevertheless, young people in Latvia are particularly interested in language learning and non-formal learning activities, which are fully ensured for young people.
Cultural involvement is limited by the opportunities available to young people - the desire to participate in different types of events is greater than the opportunities currently available, especially for popular or mass cultural events. In addition, the availability of culture in regions, especially outside large cities, is insufficient - young people are offered a limited number of cultural activities.