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In the meantime, a business plan for Culture Online as a new kind of cultural institution
to build a bridge between learning and culture, has been created and submitted to the
Treasury at the beginning of August, followed by a series of pilot projects to expand the
experience for a possible foundation of Culture Online as an organisation in April 2002.
Education Online: Connection to the future (NL)
Over the last ten years, the Dutch cultural heritage policy concentrated on several
different areas, with cultural heritage for educational purposes being one of the key areas. It
aims at linking education and institutions in the field of cultural heritage by "developing
new curricula and teaching methods" and by "publicising successful examples and
promoting the expertise of teachers and staff at heritage institutions." A significant outcome
of the area is Kennisnet, the Knowledge Net project. (The Ministry of Education, Culture
and Science, 1998)
Knowledge Net
In recent years the fields of Education and Culture have been reunited under the roof of
the same Ministry of Education, Culture and Science which offers additional policy potential
with regard to the cultural sector. One outcome of the reunion is the Knowledge Net
("Kennisnet") project which represents one of the four main policy areas within the action
plan "Education On line: Connection to the Future".The project aims at linking schools,
colleges, libraries and museums under one portal in order to provide all schools "access via
the Knowledge Net to high-quality services so that they can concentrate on use in edu-
cation and be troubled as little as possible by technical management aspects." (The Ministry
of Education, Culture and Science, 2000: p. 10; Kennisnet, <http://www.kennisnet.nl/>)
So far, some 400 schools, colleges, libraries and museums are linked together in Kennisnet.
Education On line
The "Education On line" action plan also deals with the role to be played by cultural
institutions in the educational field.To make culture widely and easily accessible for
educational purposes, the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science decided in July 2000
to make funds available to create a cultural component within the Knowledge Net.The
cultural component will focus on the use of the arts and culture in education and will
provide ready-to-use materials for teachers and pupils. Cultural institutions will also receive
funding to help schools, teachers and pupils to create cultural knowledge networks.There
are also plans to open a virtual library and to establish a competition which should facilitate
the development of new cultural-educational projects. (cf. Chatrie,Wraight, 2000: p. 193)
Creating cultural heritage content for education
Although carried out at a different scope, both examples show that some national
governments are already actively building a bridge between culture and education as the
most promising market for cultural heritage resources, also in commercial terms. Especially
in the UK, the national government currently discusses alternative funding models that
would allow small companies, that previously produced TV footage on a commission bases
for the public television stations, to create educational products.With the increase of TV
channels, the rate of own programming within the public channels has dropped consi-
derably, which has brought many small TV production companies into financial trouble.
Now, the idea is to have these companies create educational material to be delivered over
digital channels.
VI NATIONAL POLICIES & INITIATIVES