''Key elements in a good society include being prepared to do things together, to interact, to be inclusive and to create parity''

3.7.1 Youth, culture and sport

Current situation

Key elements in a good society include being prepared to do things together, to interact, to be inclusive and to create parity. Our youth, culture and sport sectors are built on a strong and vibrant civil society.

A dynamic cultural life has intrinsic value and as such it creates the foundation for a society where education and culture are highly regarded, strengthens democracy and reinforces the freedom of speech. Furthermore, the production and service sectors in the arts, culture and creative industries are not only labour-intensive areas but they are also continually growing.

It is important that we adopt a physically active lifestyle and daily habits early in life. Currently only one in five of us engage in enough physical activity to keep healthy. This generates significant costs to society.

While most young people are doing fine, 10 to 15 per cent of young people are struggling. For example, exclusion among boys, mental health problems among girls and discrimination against minorities cause human suffering and are costly to society.

In modern societies, the ratio of intangible content to GNI is growing. Currently, creative industries account for less than 4 per cent of Finland’s GDP, below the level of the other Nordic countries. Across the EU, the ratio of creative industries has increased on average to 7 per cent. 

Tourism also holds great potential; currently we have one of the weakest travel accounts in Europe. However, the attractiveness of Finnish nature and cultural life will offer many new opportunities.

Objective 1

Creative industries will provide more jobs, their ratio to GDP will grow and the conditions for workers will improve


We will increase production aid to the film industry and the audiovisual sector and establish Creative Business Finland to support growth in the creative sectors.

We plan to implement a renovation and modernisation project at the National Theatre and a project for extending the exhibition spaces at the National Museum. We will explore the potential for establishing a new Architecture and Design Museum.

We will stimulate cultural tourism, for example by making better use of our World Heritage Sites, and, as a long-term investment, establish a fund to support the creative industries and cultural activities. The fund's operating principles will be examined.

We will make provision to help fund the European Capital of Culture in 2026.

Objective 2

Cultural services will become more accessible, and the conditions will improve to allow culture to flourish


In the long term, we will seek to increase the share of appropriations for arts and culture in stages to one per cent in the Budget.

We will raise the level of grants for artists.

We intend to promote collaboration between administrative branches to enhance the impact of culture on wellbeing. To harmonise remuneration practices, we will investigate how minimum fees are determined across the artistic fields. We will pursue the 'Lukuliike' project for promoting reading, and we aim to develop a feasible levy system for private copying.

We will implement a reform of the system of central government transfers to the performing arts in order to improve the conditions in which they are created. This applies to all those involved in the performing arts sector. We will ensure the position and funding of Svenska Teatern and the TTT-Theatre in their role as major national theatre companies.

By securing the levels of central government transfers, the grants for activities and the appropriations for national institutions, we will create the conditions for culture to flourish.

We will ensure the accessibility of libraries, availability of mobile libraries, and diversity of collections. Central government financial support to libraries must be sufficient to allow the purchase of cultural works with limited circulation or material in languages other than those spoken in Finland, for example. We plan to support the publication of scientific literature written in the languages of Finland. We will improve the availability of works with literary merit that have a limited circulation. We will make sure that intangible cultural heritage is protected.

We aim to develop the 'one per cent for art and culture' scheme (one per cent of the building costs are donated for the arts and culture) and continue to implement it. We plan to support expansion to new artistic fields in addition to the visual arts.

We will increase the government grant provided in the Act on Svenska Finlands folkting Association (1331/2003) to an appropriate level.

We plan to promote children’s culture. We will support the basic education in the arts and increase the general and project grants to children’s culture.

We will develop our cultural services. We intend to draw up a cultural heritage strategy and implement the measures of the new Programme for Architectural Policy. We will update and develop the strategy for the national languages. We plan to launch a programme to promote more efficient use of cultural spaces with a view to exploring shared use of spaces, improving the conditions for touring, and strengthening the basis of cultural service providers.

Objective 3

Exclusion among young people will be reduced – every young person will stay on an education path and youth unemployment will decrease


Our main themes for the national programme for youth work and youth policy are to prevent social exclusion and bolster inclusion among young people. The programme will also incorporate the following measures: creating a model for assessing individually and reliably every child’s ability to attend school, supporting minorities and preventing exclusion, promoting young people’s employment and mental health, addressing substance use and game addiction among young people, ensuring equal opportunities for young people to access face-to-face support as part of the Ohjaamo activities, and taking into account financial literacy skills and working life skills as part of young people’s wellbeing. We plan to improve the coordination of youth policy, to set up a ministerial working group for child and youth policy and to enhance cooperation between all those involved in youth policy. We aim to ensure the effectiveness of the services designed for young people, including indicators, assessment and research. We plan to encourage budgeting with a focus on children and young people.

We will reinforce the operating conditions and financial resources for outreach youth work and workshops. We will develop a national digital system to facilitate the transfer of contact and identification data to outreach youth work.

Objective 4

Inclusion among young people will increase


We will reinforce the obligation to consult young people and introduce new tools to develop it.

We aim to improve the recognition and acknowledgment of prior work experience and learning gained from voluntary work. We plan to foster cooperation between civil society organisations and schools.

We will enhance democracy and human rights education and inclusivity at schools. We will facilitate the student union and student association activities. We aim to update the Action Plan on Democracy Policy and ensure young people’s inclusion in the Action Plan. We will prepare the necessary proposals for amending the Youth Act, particularly with a view to streamlining the financial aid processes.

Objective 5

The appropriations for the beneficiaries of Veikkaus gaming funds will be secured


Over this government term, we will compensate the Veikkaus beneficiaries for any decrease in the appropriations to culture, sports and youth work that may result from the Lotteries Act. The compensation may be implemented, for example, by moving the central government transfers to municipal sports and youth work and to theatres, museums and orchestras to on-budget finances in stages, and by reinstating in stages funding for outreach youth work under the youth work item in the Budget.

Objective 6

A physically more active lifestyle will be encouraged for all population groups


The physical activity programme and its evaluation unit will be primarily set up at the Prime Minister's Office. We also plan to establish a sports policy coordination body in accordance with the Report on Sports Policy and appointed by the Government.

We will launch a new 'Finland on the Move' programme and develop the evaluation process. We plan to expand the Schools on the Move programme to various life stages.

Objective 7

Conditions for outdoor and daily activity will improve


We will support the construction of outdoor sports facilities, reduce the maintenance backlog and improve energy efficiency. We also plan to renovate and increase the number of local outdoor sports facilities and trails. We aim to create more neighbourhood outdoor places, such as parks and green areas, which are important for everyday physical activity especially for children, older people and groups with special needs. We plan to create a national strategy for the recreational use of nature. 

Objective 8

Conditions for club and elite sports will improve


We will step up efforts to promote gender equality and parity. We will promote sports for people with disabilities and for older people.

We will implement measures proposed in the Report on Sports Policy. We plan to increase financial support to sports clubs, boost funding for elite sports, increase the performance support allocated to various sports, and carry out a study on the need for a range of elite sports as outlined in the Report on Sports Policy. We aim to allocate additional resources for a sports academy and for coaching centres.

We will ensure equal opportunities for young people engaging in performance sports to attend vocational education and training, in addition to general upper secondary schools specialising in sports.