The renewal process introduces revisions to legislation on the system of statutory state transfers (VOS system), which applies to certain professional cultural institutions within the performing arts and cultural heritage sector (museums). The allocation of these appropriations has been and remains based on legal status (Theatres and Orchestras Act and Museums Act, respectively). The transfers are intended to cover the operating costs of these institutions and are calculated on basis of unit costs and person-years. The renewal process aims at legislation that is better adapted to the changing needs and diversification of the sectors and it entails changes to the criteria for eligibility and scope of the VOS system.
The renewed Museums Act entered into force in March 2019. The Act amended provisions pertaining to the governance structures of the museum sector and clarified the responsibilities that specifically designated museums have regionally and locally. All museums had to reapply for funding, irrespective of their status under the previous Act. The Ministry assesses whether a museum still qualifies for VOS funding every four years.
A museum can apply for a regional or a national responsibility, which entails statutory responsibilities and a higher financing rate. The Finnish Heritage Agency works in a steering capacity and negotiates with the museums every four years to determine whether they have met their responsibilities. The Ministry determines whether a museum still qualifies for funding. The aim of the reform is to encourage museums to work in pursuit of diversity, impact and quality, while also encouraging goal-oriented development work. Moreover, the new Act aims at establishing more predictable funding models for the long term.
The VOS system for the performing arts has previously covered appropriations for professional theatres and orchestras. The new legislation will expand the scope of the system to cover dance, circus and other performing arts as well.
As part of the renewal, the criteria and total amount of discretionary operating grants administered by the Arts Promotion Centre to so-called "independent groups" (ie. groups and artists not within the remit of the VOS system) will be reformed. Production companies and platforms could also be considered eligible. In the future, these operators can apply for either one- or three-year operating grants, both having their own set of criteria for determining the eligibility of an applicant. In addition, five-year development grants will become available. Operators not eligible for operating grants can apply for non-recurring discretionary grants. The reform will receive an additional EUR 4.5 million in the budget.
152 000 000
|Name of partner||Type of entity|
Arts Promotion centre
Finnish Heritage Agency
Civil Society Organization (CSO)