Shared Cultural Heritage Programme

Shared Cultural Heritage Programme

Please note: we are currently updating this information for the new policy period 2021-2024.

How does the history of the Netherlands as a world nation continue to influence Dutch society and our international relations? The language we speak, the food we eat, the buildings that surround us and the stories we pass on bear many traces of a shared history with other countries, among them Australia, Brazil, India, Indonesia, Japan, Russia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Suriname and the United States. The Netherlands is now working with these countries to preserve the significance of these historical links for future generations.

The Shared Cultural Heritage programme is part of the Netherlands’ international cultural policy. The Dutch Ministries of Foreign Affairs and of Education, Culture and Science have formulated this policy for the period 2017 – 2020 focusing on ten partner countries: Australia, Brazil, India, Indonesia, Japan, Russia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Suriname and the United States

Cooperation on the basis of equality, reciprocity and respect for ownership is at the core of our commitment to our shared cultural heritage. International cooperation is needed if we are to preserve and manage this shared cultural heritage and make it accessible. Public participation is essential for the sustainable development and repurposing of cultural heritage.

The embassies of the Netherlands in the ten partner countries have a budget for supporting local Shared Cultural Heritage projects. In the Netherlands, three institutes execute the Shared Cultural Heritage policy in close cooperation with governments, institutions and organisations in the partner countries. The three executing organisations are DutchCulture, centre for international cooperation, the National Archives of the Netherlands and the Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands. Jointly, these organisations aim to foster local demands in the partner countries and link the individual projects. More information on their roles and responsibilities can be found in this fact sheet and or on our websites.

You are welcome to participate in the Shared Cultural Heritage programme. The Dutch Embassies and the three institutes in the Netherlands can help to provide Dutch and international heritage professionals and organisations with expertise, networks or financial support.