• European University Institute logo
  • Global Governance Programme logo

Cultures and Identities in Europe

What does it mean to be European? Discover European cultures, identities and policies with this course.

Cultures and Identities in Europe
  • Duration3 weeks
  • Weekly study3 hours
This course is part of the Exploring Culture and Heritage program, which will enable you to discover the importance of culture and heritage.

Get a greater understanding of Europe and its people

What is European identity? What do we understand and promote as European culture? On this course you will answer these questions and others as you critically consider the formation of diverse identities and cultures in Europe.

You will explore fundamental European policies on culture, creativity and the media, and shed light on the importance of memories and shared heritage. You will also look at the policy behind European cultural and media industries and question current approaches to cultural creativity that rely heavily on economics.

Download video: standard or HD

Skip to 0 minutes and 12 seconds What is European culture today, and which are the elements that compose this unique mixture? Elements from Europe’s past– wars and conflicts, scientific achievements and inventions, philosophies and political theories, religions and ideologies, traditional cultural expressions– are surely fundamental. But other elements also enrich the mixture– lesser-known languages, local customs, minority cultures, migrant communities’ traditions, and new forms of art. Institutions and policies intervene in this process and contribute to the shaping of contemporary European culture.

Skip to 1 minute and 4 seconds This MOOC will provide you with the necessary tools to understand what is nowadays a European culture and a European identity and how they relate to the many that exist at national and local levels in Europe. You will learn how institutions and policies shape European culture, as well as how the cultural heritage of Europe can be mobilised to generate new forms of art to produce cultural goods and to set up new industries.

Skip to 1 minute and 37 seconds Don’t miss this opportunity. Join us in this revealing journey from the past through the present and to the future of Europe.

What topics will you cover?

European identities

  • What is Europe?
  • Diversity in Europe

European memory and heritage

  • European memories
  • Constructing European heritage

European creativity

  • Cultural industries in Europe
  • Urban creativity
  • Cultural creativity and European Futures

When would you like to start?

Most FutureLearn courses run multiple times. Every run of a course has a set start date but you can join it and work through it after it starts. Find out more

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Engage with current debates on what is 'European identity', what is 'European culture', and what it means to talk of them in the singular or the plural (cultures, identities).
  • Explain the relationship between notions of identity, memory, heritage, and culture.
  • Interpret main approaches to cultural heritage and the public use of history.
  • Identify European policies in the media and cultural sector.
  • Discuss critical approaches to cultural industries

Who is the course for?

This course is for anyone interested in European culture, but will be of particular interest to those working in the arts, culture and heritage.

Who will you learn with?

Jeremie Molho is Research Fellow at the European University Institute and the National University of Singapore

Anna Triandafyllidou is Canada Excellence Research Chair in Migration and Integration at Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada.

Who developed the course?

European University Institute (EUI)

The European University Institute offers doctoral and post-doctoral training in the social sciences. It hosts the Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies and the Historical Archives of the EU.

Global Governance Programme

One of the flagship programmes at the European University institute (EUI), launched in 2010 in response to a growing need for global governance in an ever more interconnected and multipolar world.