European Map of Music Legislation

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UNESCO and the European Music Council


For the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) music simply is ‘a public affair’. As an intergovernmental organisation, composed of 195 member states, everything this UN agency does has a public incidence, in all its areas of competence: education, sciences, social sciences, communication and information and… culture.

In all these fields, UNESCO functions as a laboratory of ideas, standard setter, catalyst for international cooperation, clearing house and capacity-builder in its Member States. The purpose of this article will be best served by focusing on UNESCO’s standard-setting and capacity-building functions.

So begins Silja Fischer’s article ‘UNESCO and Music’ in 2012/2013 Sounds in Europe (p 18), one of many thought-provoking contributions to that issue.

Silja Fischer is Secretary General of the International Music Council (IMC), which Dick Letts chaired for two consecutive two-year periods (2005-2009)

The IMC, founded in 1949 by UNESCO, is the world's largest network of organisations, institutions and individuals working in the field of music. The European Music Council is a regional group of the IMC. It has members in 31 countries ranging from Russia, Azerbaijan, Israel and Turkey in the east, to the United Kingdom.

2012/2013 Sounds in Europe was the eighth annual volume. All are accessible on the website quoted above. Just scroll to the annual issue and click Download.

Policy Map

“The policy map shows legislative measures that have a positive impact on music activities in the different European countries.

This list is by no means exhaustive. If you have knowledge of other laws in a country that supports music, please let us know and write to”

Quoted from the policy map in 2012/2013 Sounds in Europe, p 22. The legend, with a note on each policy measure included, as reproduced below, is on p 24.


Notes and quotes compiled by Editor. Placed on Knowledge Base 9 March 2014.

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