Since 2014 Euromaidan Ukraine has taken a path of renewal and reform in its cultural policy. Therefore independent cultural initiatives has had a greater influence due to the financing by new cultural governmental institutions. Their appearance marked the transition from the post-Soviet culture sector management to the new one which bridges the gap between state and independent cultural figures. The Long-term Cultural Development Strategy in Ukraine
(Reform Strategy, 2016) was adopted in 2016 and included the refinement and upgrading of legal, structural and financial tools of cultural support, etc.
A series of legislative reforms and political initiatives led to the creation of new state actors in the culture sector such as the Ukrainian Cultural Foundation, the Ukrainian Institute and the Ukrainian Book Institute. Also it restructured the former State Agency for Cinema of Ukraine. These four organizations have become the key providers of funds for the culture sector. They promote new governance and management principles, perform an analysis and indicate the obsolescence of the existing financial system and legal framework (source
At the end of 2014 Ukraine ratified the Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement which came into effect September 1, 2017. The Agreement includes chapter 24 “Culture” with 4 articles listing the obligations of the parties in the culture sector. That includes the proper implementation of the 2005 UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions (source
In 2016 Ukraine joined the EU programme “Creative Europe” which supports the culture and audio-visual sector. The Ukrainian culture, audio-visual and creative sector got the opportunity to have the EU financial support, work across Europe, reach new audiences and develop the skills needed in a digital area, which also preserves cultural and language identity (source
). The Ukrainian Cultural Foundation
In 2017 the Ukrainian Cultural Foundation (UCF) was created to provide the equal access to finance for state and non-state institutions, bridge the gap between them and release the Ministry of Culture from the duty of allocating funds between artists. The UCF aims at promoting the establishment of modern Ukrainian competitive cultural and art projects. The key objectives of the foundation are expert selection, financing and monitoring of the cultural projects supported by the Ukrainian Cultural Foundation. The UCF is a state institution, its activity is defined and coordinated by the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine. The UCF has developed a strategy
where the strategic aims are the following: strengthening institutional and financial capacity; promoting the creation of the cultural product; strengthening the role of culture in the development of society and the internationalization of Ukrainian culture.
During the first two years after its formation, the Foundation has sponsored over 700 projects in all 24 regions of Ukraine. The Foundation involved about 500 sectoral experts - from the civil society, local authorities and academic sphere - to assess the applications for funding. That solidified its position as a bridge between a state and cultural creative industries of Ukraine. The UCF also set up a partially automated application process to minimize the conflict of interest between experts and raise efficiency.
- The budget for 2019: 16,7 mln. euros
- The budget for 2020: 20,3 mln. euros, was decreased to 11,66 mln. euros after the budget cut connected with COVID-19 (source
- The budget for 2021: 20 mln. euros (695 mln. hryvnia)
During the grant season-2021 the Ukrainian Cultural Foundation supported 546 projects, signed 510 agreements about the funding provision and 36 agreements about scholarships with a total value of 499,3 mln. hryvnia and 3,9 mln. hryvnia respectively.
The structure of the UCF is the following: the Supervisory Board, the Foundation administration and Expert Councils. The administration of the Foundation includes: the fund management, a project department, a communication and public relations department, an analytical department, a department of international cooperation, a 'Creative Europe' programme department, a project finance department, an accounting department, a planning department, a procurement and contract management department, a legal support department, a documents, organization and control branch, a programme technology branch and an economy security department. Expert councils exist for each Foundation activity and include the representatives of different cultural industries (source
Currently, there are 9 grant programmes
in operation: 'culture without barriers', 'audio-visual art', 'an innovative cultural product', 'cultural heritage', 'Research.residence.scholarships', 'the cultural capital of Ukraine', 'Grand event', 'Culture. Regions' and 'Culture Plus'. Each programme has its lots, the date of application and the budget. More details of the lots can be found on https://www.ucf.in.ua/
In 2018, as a result of 11 strategic sessions with the involvement of experts and practitioners from the cultural, creative and audio-visual spheres, the Foundation Strategy for 2019-2021
was developed. Further during this period the Strategy and its tools and mechanisms had to be corrected and improved, which had to create the long-term strategy for 2022-2027 for the Ukrainian Cultural Foundation.The Ukrainian Institute
The Ukrainian Institute began functioning in 2017 by order of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine. The Institute was created to promote "opportunities for interaction and cooperation between Ukraine and the rest of the world". The Institute encourages the participation of Ukrainian artists in international platforms. It also develops the potential of a local creative sector via international cooperation and the stimulation of Ukrainian studies and teaching Ukrainian all over the world. The mission
of the organization is to strengthen the international and internal identity of Ukraine through cultural diplomacy. The activitity of the Ukrainian Institute is divided into sectors: cinema, music, visual arts, literature, performing arts, academic projects and programmes, image projects and programmes, the development of cultural diplomacy and research.
The majority of the Institute events in 2019 were connected with the programme “Bilateral Year of Culture Ukraine-Austria”, which included joint projects with Austrian museums and universities, art exhibitions and festivals along with the Ukrainian Culture campaign in the Austrian media. The Ukrainian Institute reports to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (source
- Budget for 2019: 1,760,591 euros.
- Budget for 2020: 2,285,271 euros, was later decreased to 1,442,869 euros after the budget cut connected with COVID-19(source
).The strategy for 2020-2024 for the Ukrainian Institute
was developed, and it included the main priorities of the foreign cultural policy of Ukraine. The Ukrainian Book Institute
The Ukrainian Book Institute was founded in 2016 and it supports particular publishing projects, popularizes reading, donates books to libraries and arranges Ukrainian stands at international book exhibitions. It also creates the free electronic library of Ukrainian culture. The library reform remains a major challenge because librarians need to be retrained and repositories should be digitized. The budget for 2020: 4,401,479 euros, decreased to 2,914,886 euros after the budget cut connected with COVID-19 (source
). The State Agency of Ukraine for Cinema
The state Agency of Ukraine for Cinema was founded in 2006 but has started to actively develop only since 2014. The new law on state support for cinematography was adopted in 2016 and provided the budget funding equivalent to 0,2 per cent of GDP for films, TV programmes and series production. In accordance with the law, filmmakers get an opportunity to cover 80% of production costs from public funds. Due to it, in the period between 2014 and 2019 the budget for co-financing of film production increased by 700 per cent from 63 mln. hryvnia to 505 mln. hryvnia. During the same period at least 173 films were released - a significant increase in comparison with the previous years. The share of domestic films in the country’s cinemas for the same period has risen dramatically - from 1,7 to 8%. A number of Ukrainian films received prizes at international film festivals. The State Agency of Ukraine for Cinema also supports domestic film festivals, participation in international film markets, promotion and distribution - all that contributed to a creation of a dynamic and fully functioning national film industry (source
In 2017 an educational programme Cultural Leadership Academy was established, which was aimed at training and professional development of managers in the field of culture. In 2017 the Concept "Decentralization: the culture sector" was also introduced establishing strict indicators of decentralization reform in Ukraine in the field of culture. This enabled the development of a road map for further decentralization in the culture sector and the involvement of regions, cities and towns, as well as communities (source
As new cultural institutions come on the scene with new standards of governance and management, the Ministry of Culture was more resilient to change, demonstrating that to build new institutions from scratch could be simpler rather than reform the old structures.