A Culture Strategy for Scotland

A Culture Strategy for Scotland shows how important culture is to Scotland’s prosperity and sets the future direction for supporting culture in Scotland.

7. Summary of actions

Strengthening culture


  • Develop the conditions and skills for culture to thrive, so it is cared for, protected and produced for the enjoyment and enrichment of all present and future generations
  • Value, trust and support creative people - for their unique and vital contribution to society and the economy
  • Encourage greater openness and diverse cultures to reflect a changing Scotland in the 21st century
  • Foster international collaboration and build on Scotland's reputation for cultural excellence


  • Consider ways to support the cultural workforce including through a new Arts Alive programme and advocating for fair work practices and a living wage for the cultural and creative workforce
  • Undertake a status review of cultural workforce and leadership development in Scotland, led by Creative Scotland
  • Continue to work on making the culture and heritage sector part of Scotland as a Fair Work Nation by 2025, looking at the potential impact of fair work criteria being part of relevant grant schemes
  • Work in partnership to increase diversity in the sector, sharing new approaches and codes of practice that ensure skills development and board membership have diversity at their core, including helping recruitment diversity by introducing appropriate remuneration for board members of national culture and heritage public bodies
  • Work with our partners to realise the vision and priorities in our Policy Statement for the Creative Industries[36]
  • Support Museums Galleries Scotland to build on their Skills for Success programme[37] by developing future approaches to diversify skills and widen access to careers in culture across the sector
  • Continue to work in partnership with the national culture and heritage bodies on support for creative people, Scotland's international profile including the international touring and festival appearances by the National Performing Companies supported by the International Touring Fund and international loans by and from the National Collections
  • Continue to press the UK Government for the much needed changes to immigration, trade and wider mobility issues for our cultural sectors to ensure that Scotland can continue to operate effectively as a cultural and creative leader on the world stage
  • Work with Creative Scotland and the network of Scottish Government offices outside Scotland to facilitate opportunities across the culture sector by working with stakeholders to promote and encourage international cultural exchange and collaboration, showcasing Scotland as a progressive, pioneering and creative nation
  • Establish a National Partnership for Culture to work with individuals and organisations across culture and other sectors to continue the national culture conversation - identifying opportunities and synergies, advising Ministers and building on this strategy and the Scottish Parliament's Culture, Tourism, Europe and External Affairs Committee's 2019 inquiry into the future of funding for the arts in Scotland.

Transforming through culture


  • Place culture as a central consideration across all policy areas including: health and wellbeing, economy, education, reducing inequality and realising a greener and more innovative future
  • Open up the potential of culture as a transformative opportunity across society


  • Establish a new National Partnership for Culture to continue our national culture conversation and advise Scottish Ministers on matters affecting and affected by culture in Scotland
  • Establish a Measuring Change group to inform progress towards realising the National Outcome for Culture and the delivery of the culture strategy
  • Collaborate to realise the transformational power of culture in achieving a broad range of policy outcomes including the development of:
    • Cross-government Policy compacts embedding culture at the centre of policy-making
    • Partnerships with other government agencies and public bodies to support economic growth
    • Support to help the Scottish Arts Culture Health and Wellbeing Scotland expand and develop
    • Work to embed the principles of Article 31 of the United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) across the full range of publicly funded cultural activity
    • Work with Creative Scotland and Education Scotland to help improve cultural experiences for learners of all ages
    • Partner with Creative Scotland and Engage Scotland to identify best practice and barriers, developing new approaches to supporting schools, teachers and pupils to engage more confidently with contemporary visual arts and design.
    • Continuing work with Creative Scotland and the National Youth Arts Advisory Group to secure ways to ensure that the voices of children and young people continue to be heard and they are involved in cultural decision-making
    • Ways to ensure that Historic Environment Scotland's pioneering work on climate change is widely promoted so that we all understand how we can manage the effects on our historic buildings
    • Ways to show how heritage and culture can transform public thinking to transition to a net zero society and economy in tackling the climate emergency
  • Support activity focused on delivering the new national outcome for culture through the new national partnership and measuring change group

Empowering through culture


  • Continue to celebrate Scotland's extraordinary cultural contributions
  • Extend the view of culture to include the everyday and emerging, the established and more formal
  • Extend opportunities that enable people to take part in culture throughout their lives
  • Recognise each community's own local cultures in generating a distinct sense of place, identity and confidence


  • Work with Creative Scotland to map local authority support for culture and to explore future models of collaboration between national and local bodies
  • Launch a Creative Communities programme in partnership with Inspiring Scotland and with support from Creative Scotland - a new initiative to support and empower individuals and communities to further develop their own cultural activity
  • Work in partnership with culture trusts and local authorities, including in Community Planning Partnerships local networks and CoSLA to realise local outcomes across Scotland
  • Work with Culture Conveners from Scottish local government and culture trusts including through establishing a joint meeting of arts and culture conveners
  • Work with national organisations to help them plan their community activities to ensure the widest possible reach across Scotland


Email: culturestrategyandengagement@gov.scot

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