The current National Cultural Policy describes the government's involvement in matters relating to the arts and cultural heritage and pertains to the years 2013-2020. It is intended as an aid for government and lawmakers, to provide a framework for guidance in future debates, policy making and decision making in the sectors to which the policy pertains.
In broad strokes, the National Cultural Policy focuses on increasing the public's access to participating in or consuming cultural activities and cultural heritage; supporting cooperation between the government and entities actively participating in the field of culture; as well as placing a special emphasis on the participation of children and youth in cultural activities. With the policy, the Icelandic government acknowledges its role in creating appropriate conditions for fostering diversity, innovation and initiative in the field of arts and cultural heritage. The importance of diversity, supporting individuals, institutions and organizations engaged in cultural activities and enabling youth in the cultural sphere are recognized as pivotal points in the Policy. The freedom of expression and democracy are equally recognized as fundamental in creative activity. Iceland's participation in the international context is also addressed with the aim to increase international cooperation, in particular with sister organizations in other Nordic countries.
Formulation of a new National Cultural Policy is currently in progress. The new Policy is formed with consideration of various data, such as the previous Cultural Policy, existing cultural legislation, and the UN's sustainable development goals. This is intended as an all-encompassing comprehensive guideline for all matters cultural within the country. The Policy will act as a guide for government support of cultural activities until 2030.
The National Cultural Policy has provided a guideline for cultural activities in Iceland. The policy has supported the government in a cohesive approach to cultural matters and provided an important basis against which to evaluate cultural policies and activities. The National Cultural Policy will continuously be updated to best reflect the areas of greatest importance at any given time and continue to provide a framework within which cultural policies and activities may be measured and evaluated.