Policy Profile Ireland


Ireland is a member state of the European Union and is therefore required to implement all EU directives, laws, regulations and policies, including those related to heritage and culture. 

Ireland and the EU

The European Commission and the European Parliament have a Representation and Liaison Offices respectively in Dublin. The Irish Government has a Permanent Representation to the European Union in Brussels.

National Cultural Policy in Ireland

At a national level, the cultural policy system of Ireland is decided mainly by the Government of Ireland. Policies relating to culture and heritage are largely the responsibility of government ministries and, as of 2024, there are two ministries with explicit jurisdiction: the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media and the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage. Heritage policies are becoming more mainstream across other ministries and it is no longer the case that these two ministries are the exclusive decision makers with responsibility for issues which impact on heritage.

Various agencies of the State exist which draft and implement policies at national level. The Office of Public Works (OPW) is responsible for management of state assets, including cultural heritage sites. The Heritage Council works to engage, educate and advocate on heritage and also researches heritage policy. The Arts Council works in partnership with artists, arts organisations, and public policy makers to advocate for arts and culture at national level. Culture Ireland works to advocate for Irish heritage and culture internationally.

Regional Policies in Ireland

Local governments in Ireland play a role in the articulation of cultural policy, mainly through the Local Authority Heritage Officer programme which helps provide advice, guidance and information on heritage and its valorations at local level.

View all Ireland policies gathered so far

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* = This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244/1999 and the ICJ opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence

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