Culture is important

May 9, 2018 | Luxembourg’s business sectors | Alix Bellac

Professional activities relating to cultural activities are, in the strict sense, not cultural professions.

Operations in the field of culture, which are to be distinguished from the cultural professions and cultural activities, are the creative institutions that generate jobs. They are continually developing in the Grand Duchy.

The Luxembourg Ministry of Culture emphasises on its website that culture forms the basis of a democratic and open society, because it is the foundation and the driving force behind the knowledge and appropriation of intellectual values.

As far as the employment situation is concerned, it should be noted that most of the training courses in this area are offered in France, Germany, and Belgium.

“You can certainly have a good career in the field of culture”

Olivier Thunus from Luxembourg's statistic institute, Statec

And in Luxembourg, this is quite possible.

In this multi-faceted and constantly changing area, where there are numerous cross-connections between the various sectors. The study requirements are on average in the range of BAC + 2 and higher. This figure is the result of the fairly developed study requirements in the translation disciplines, which also belong to the cultural professions and obviously play a significant role in Luxembourg. The Grand Duchy is distinguished from its European neighbours by the fact that European institutions are based here, but there are also areas of activity in the film industry. These sectors form the special “DNA” of our country.

However, as Olivier Thunus stresses, it is important to distinguish between two different professional activities in this sector. For this purpose, the Statec Institute has concentrated its investigations on employment and the recommendations of the statistical office of the European Union, Eurostat. This authority has defined – in terms of European harmonisation – the positioning of a professional activity, whether it be a cultural activity or a cultural profession. These two designations overlap, but they are quite different!

It should be noted however that jobs within the sphere of culture are not regarded as cultural professions but rather support jobs that exercise those professions. As far as those varied professions that are regarded as cultural positions are concerned, the following are mentioned: technicians in galleries, museums, and libraries as well as journalists, authors, writers, photographers, architects, interior decorators, visual artists, jewellers (see the leaflet Jewellery dealers/Jewellers for more on that), and also glass blowers.

Why not apply for a career as a graphic designer, as a librarian or museum administrator, as a director in the performance area, in architecture etc. in the area of cultural activities? The list, which does not claim to be exhaustive, shows that the definition of the two terms is really difficult.

Why not apply for a career as a graphic designer, as a librarian or museum administrator, as a director in the performance area, in architecture etc. in the area of cultural activities?

Be that as it may, cultural activities ensure the livelihood of a growing number of people. This is due to the resolute action of all the people concerned, throughout the Grand Duchy.

As a sign of this dynamism, it is worth noting that the experts from the professions involved in art production that meet for the European Days of Artists' Professions – JEMA – are dealing with the precisely defined objective of creating a high profile for the varied occupations and the connections that are generated or stimulated by them.

In terms of sustained publicity for this dynamic sector, Max Theis, consultant to the government at the Ministry of Education, states that although it is true that there is no overarching association for all the professions in this field, on the occasion of the Assises culturelles (which took place on 1 and 2 July 2016), they were able to draw up a report, and the concerns relating to each cultural area were discussed and addressed with corresponding proposals. Max Theis also points out that on the occasion of the “Ateliers du jeudi”, people working in the cultural scene met to deal with topics such as the Luxembourgian culture and its transmission beyond the national boundaries.

Even if the jobseekers in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg do not have a full range of professional qualifications in the field of arts and culture available, there are still many opportunities to practice a profession in the local cultural domain. This is thanks to the different funding measures that have emerged as part of the high-profile publicity for the artistic and cultural interests in Luxembourg. It is safe to assume that this development is set to continue.

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