Cultural Policy and Development - Ανοικτό Πανεπιστήμιο Κύπρου - Open University of Cyprus
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  • Description

  • Programme structure

  • Modules

  • Academic Personnel

  • Contact

  • UNESCO Chair Candidate on Visual Literacy


The postgraduate (Master in Arts, MA) programme “Cultural Policy and Development” provides an in-depth understanding of the importance and role of cultural heritage and modern cultural production, and highlights both as tools for developing and promoting the public image of a state. Understanding both the own cultural memory and identity, as well as that of other states and peoples has proven to be an essential prerequisite for economic and social development. At the same time, it helps to ensure constructive communication and cooperation with other countries and societies. The MA programme “Cultural Policy and Development stresses the deep interaction of culture with politics, both locally and outside the EU, as well as on a global level.

The purpose of the “Cultural Policy and Development" MA programme is the scientific engagement, specialisation and research in the subject of cultural organisation and management. The programme aims to train high-level scientists in the field of culture, tourism and creative industries that will substantially contribute to the creation of social prosperity from any position they work in local or international organisations, institutions, networks and collaborations. Students, depending on their interests and the field in which they wish to become active, have the opportunity to choose Modules that will make them competitive both locally and internationally.




  • The MA programme offers a high level of knowledge and skills to those interested in working as executives in the field of culture, tourism and the creative industries in Cyprus and Greece.
  • You will be trained in the management, promotion and development of cultural capital, cultural production, and the development of cultural entrepreneurship.
  • It Strengthens the strategic vision and optimises leadership skills needed to meet the cultural challenges of the 21st century on a national, regional and European level.
  • It is structured in semesters, so students gain additional specialisation and the opportunity to become familiar with more areas of cultural management.

The Programme has been evaluated and accredited by the Cyprus Agency of Quality Assurance and Accreditation in Higher Education.


The Open University of Cyprus (OUC), through its participation in the European project "Liaison Offices with the Labour Market", offers to students of all its programmes of study, the optional and free of charge Thematic Unit (i.e. Module) entitled "Industry Placement". This module provides students opportunities for a placement to gain professional experience in their particular field of study, and the hosting institution can be any public or private organisation operating in the Republic of Cyprus.

Each student has the right to participate in this offering once or twice during his / her studies, provided that s/he meets the required conditions.

Request more information by contacting the OUC Liaison Office here.

European Credit Units - ECTS: 120

Teaching Language: Greek

Level of Studies: Postgraduate

Title to be Awarded: Magister Artium (MA) 



The minimum requirement for admission to a postgraduate programme is an undergraduate degree from an accredited Higher Education Institution.

Very good knowledge of English for the study of international literature.

Computer skills (Microsoft Office programs - Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Access etc.)- and internet applications.



The total cost of the fees for this postgraduate programme is 5,400.

The fees for each Module are €675, while the fees for the Master Thesis are €1,350.



Applications can be submitted exclusively online:

Αιτήσεις Αγγ χωρίς ημερομηνίσ

 Application dates for the Academic year 2022-2023 : February 24 - May 24, 2022.

The duration of the postgraduate programme is two years and it is divided into four semesters. The student completes the Master's degree programme after attending the three (3) compulsory Modules, three (3) electives and after having completed the master thesis as follows:

In the first semester, the student chooses up to two (2) Modules (PPA511, PPA512). Both compulsory.

In the second semester, the student chooses up to two (2) Modules, one compulsory (PPA521) and one out of the three electives (PPS522, PPA523, PPA621).

 In the third semester, the student chooses either two modules out of the three electives or a module among the three (PPA614, PPA615, PPA616) and part I of the master thesis (PPA701A). In the fourth semester, the student, if he/she has not yet completed the elective modules, chooses an elective out of the three offered in the 2nd semester (PPA522, PPA523, PPA621) and the second part of the master thesis (PPA701B). If he/she has completed the elective modules, he /she will begin the master thesis which is compulsory.

PPA511: Culture and Cultural Studies, 15 ects

PPA512: Cultural Policy and Cultural Management, 15 ects

PPA521: Cultural Economics and Management, 15 ects

PPA522: Cultural Communication, 15 ects

PPA523: Cultural Law and Law of Intellectual Property, 15 ects

PPA614: Museum Studies-Museology, 15 ects

PPA615: Cultural Tourism, Urban Regeneration and City Branding, 15 ects

PPA616: Cultural and Creative Industries, 15 ects

PPA621: Art and Society, 15 ects

PPA701Α: Master Thesis I, 15 ects

PPA701Β: Master Thesis II, 15 ects

PPA695: Industry Placement (1st), 5 ects

PPA696: Industry Placement (2nd), 5 ects

Academic Personnel

Vayia (Vicky) Karaiskou, Associate Professor, PPA621, Module Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.0035722411987


Adjunct Faculty (Tutors) 

Fall Semester

Tutor E-mail Modules Coordinator
Efharis Mascha This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. PPA511 Module coordinator
Dorothea Papathanasiou        This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.        PPA512          Module coordinator
Georgios Papaioannou This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. PPA614 Academic coordinator & Module coordinator    
Christos Vassiliadis This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. PPA615 Module coordinator
Orsalia Kassaveti This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. PPA616 Module coordinator

Spring Semester

Tutor E-mail Module Coordinator
Mina Dragouni This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. PPA521 Module coordinator
Georgios Papaioannou This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. PPA522 Academic coordinator & Module coordinator       
Aikaterini Papadopoulou        This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.          PPA523         Module coordinator

For additional information, please contact Ms. Yianna Yiasouma (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.), 00357-22411915.


The UNESCO Chair on “Visual Anticipation and Futures Literacy towards Visual Literacy” (currently in candidacy status) adds an innovative approach to cultural policy and development. The candidate Chair aims to enhance critical thinking, self-understanding, dialogue and empathy inside and outside our cultural communities, focusing on mastering the tools to comprehend the ‘subtexts’ behind cultural visuals. This understanding adds new potential to cultural policy and development, and creates the conditions for shared values and norms for inclusion and empowerment that ensure solidarity, global peace and prosperity.


  • 01. Futures and Visual Literacy at the MA Programme “Cultural Policy and Development”

    The cultural sector is an interdisciplinary field featured by complexity at different levels and delicate balances regarding its management and policy-making. In addition, culture holds a great potential to renew policymaking towards an inclusive contribute to social, economic and environmental goals, as it provides the necessary transformative dimension that ensures the sustainability of development processes.

    Sustainable strategies and policies will, effectively deal, concomitantly, with the multifaceted issues concerning culture and cultural heritage. Flexible thinking, inclusive interaction, cultivation of resilience, innovation, adaptability and openness towards the new are some important qualifications for current and future managers and, generally, for those involved in the cultural sector.

    The MA program “Cultural Policy and Development” has integrated concepts and practices of Futures Literacy and Visual Literacy in the context of its modules (Thematic Units). These practices respond to the need for a continuous enrichment of the students’ skills, in order for them to: a) become more effective and capable in dealing with emerging issues in the field of cultural management; b) contribute creatively to sustainable development and the challenges of the 21st century; c) effectively link Sustainable Development with Cultural Management.

  • 02. What is Visual Literacy within the framework of Futures Literacy?

    Without consideration, without pity, without shame
    they have built great and high walls around me.
    Ah why did I not pay attention when they were building the walls.
    But I never heard any noise or sound of builders.
    Imperceptibly they shut me from the outside world.
                                                          C.P. Cavafy, Walls, 1896-1897*

    Beware of the story we narrate and why we narrate it.

    While Futures Literacy is the capacity to identify, reveal and explore anticipatory assumptions for the future (A.A.) with an aim to enable people comprehend how their thinking alters what they see, feel and do in the present, Visual Literacy explores the perceptions that determine the nature of our assumptions. It sheds light on HOW and WHY we form, individually as well as collectively, our anticipatory assumptions that reproduce the patterns, values and structures of dominant narratives.

    Dominant narratives and iconic visuals come from the past. They train our minds to recreate the conditions of the past in the present and carry them into the future. In other words, our familiar past colonizes the future by creating our reality in the present. Visual Literacy tries to dig to the roots of our assumptions by locating their origin in visual imagery and by revealing the stories behind the visually narrated stories. This gives us valuable information about how anticipatory assumptions are constructed.

    How we think and how we feel creates what we are. We all have filters that shape our thought patterns. In fact, we have multiple filters at the same time, individual as well as collective. We cannot escape them but we can certainly beware of them. They all make us part of communities. However, while belonging feels safe and desirable, at the same time it dictates what is ‘normal’, ‘expected’, ‘right’ or ‘wrong’. Hence, it narrows our choices and possibilities.

    Awareness of where our stories, i.e. our perceptions, assumptions and anticipatory assumptions, come from and how we built them, liberates our minds, instils agency and empowers us as individuals.

    During the Visual Literacy Laboratories (VLL) participants will explore these stories; they will comprehend the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of the images they carry in their minds; and will equip themselves with the choice to curve their own paths in the present and in the future.

    *In C.P. Cavafy: Collected Poems. Revised Edition. E.Keeley & Ph. Sherrard, trans.; G. Savidis, ed. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1992.

  • 03. What is Futures Literacy (FL) and why is it considered ‘Literacy’?

    Futures Literacy is a capability acquired through an experiential and a participatory procedure. The concept ‘Literacy’ is used because FL refers to a competence equivalent to reading, speech and writing. Its uniqueness, though, relies on the fact that it involves as well a variety of existing skills, such as social, technical and processing, that support our innate ability to make-sense.

    Futures Literate individuals enhance their awareness of the opportunities emerging from upheavals and difficulties while they value innovation and ephemerality more than they used to do. Hence, they sharpen their resilience ability balancing between knowledge and preparation, on the one hand, and creative imagination, diversity and acceptance of uncertainty as a source of opportunity, on the other.

    As Miller 2018 argues, “when we are relieved from the pressure to manage uncertainty in our lives through detailed planning and make space for new ideas and scenarios for the future, then FL can expand and open up new horizons and options. In this way of thinking, future becomes understandable as well as the role that it plays in how we view the world and lead us, hence, to a development change.

    For further information:

    What is Futures Literacy (FL)?

    Nicklas Larsen, 2020. What Is ‘Futures Literacy’ and Why Is It Important?

  • 04. What need has led to Futures Literacy (FL)?

    The rapid changes at all levels of life initiated by the arrival of the 4th Industrial Revolution, the Digital Era, and the domino effect caused by the climate crisis – to mention only two of the most milestone conditions of the 21st century – call for new frameworks of thought and action. These frameworks need to be original and creative to effectively tackle the new challenges and successfully overcome current deadlocks.

    Contemporary lifestyle has strengthened conventional ways of thinking and action. We constantly predict and anticipate in our daily lives without realizing that our predictions project in the future our current understandings, perceptions and assumptions deriving from our experience. As a result, we weaken our imagination, and creativity plays a lesser role in our life. Accordingly, we have difficulty in ‘inventing’ new, original solutions that could deal more effectively with the multiple challenges we face and, consequently, we become less active co-creators of our future.

    The ancient Greek saying "know thyself" has had a decisive effect on many philosophers' way of thinking. Understanding the limiting mechanisms of our thinking, along with acknowledging and examining our expectations for the present and the future will make us more effective in both our predictions for the future, as well as the management of the present.

    In order to create the conditions for a sustainable living environment flexibility of thought and active co-creation are required. A systematic search and exploration of a variety of alternative scenarios for the future, even bold ones in the context of what we know so far, require vigorous imagination. Futures Literacy (FL), an official UNESCO program since 2012, serves this need.

    For further information:

    Nicklas Larsen, 2020. What Is ‘Futures Literacy’ and Why Is It Important?

    Riel Miller, 2010. Futures Literacy - Embracing Complexity and Using the Future?

    Evaluating and Improving the Use of the Future for Identifying and Choosing Dynamic Opportunities

    Roumiana Gotseva & Irina Todorova, 2015. How do we identify great opportunities


  • 05. Why is Futures Literacy (FL) and Visual Literacy (VL) important in contemporary societies?

    In our daily life, we activate – automatically and without explicit awareness – our personal anticipatory systems to face challenges. An integral part of these innate systems are the well-established personal and cultural lenses through which we see and make-sense of the world. Consequently, we resist creating new frameworks for assessing and handling situations because these lenses are our personal road maps.

    However, when we are aware of these innate anticipatory systems, as well as of how they are constructed, we can deconstruct them, and co-create different versions of the future, at a personal, as well as at a political, cultural, economic and, in general, collective level.

    Acquiring Visual Literacy skills within the context of Futures Literacy is nowadays an urgent and necessary requirement. This skill essentially contributes to the process of creating new frameworks through which we will be able to reconsider our role in the world. Through specific methodological steps that stimulate creativity and imagination, Futures & Visual Literacy offers the opportunity to visualize alternative scenarios, to challenge, experiment, and negotiate the multiple aspects of different futures. By applying experimental and experiential play, participants train in exploring and embracing uncertainty, in sensing the present, and in applying today the ideas of tomorrow.

    For further information:

    Nicklas Larsen, 2020. What Is ‘Futures Literacy’ and Why Is It Important?

    Futures Literacy - Embracing Complexity and Using the Future

  • 06. What does it mean to be Futures Literate or Literate in FL?

    In his book Transforming the Future Anticipation in the 21st Century  (2018), Riel Miller, Head of Futures Literacy at UNESCO, and his partners define Futures Literacy as a tool through which we can better understand and use our various, innate anticipatory systems. The revolutionary element in this proposal is that by acknowledging the countless alternatives of the future, we not only change the way we anticipate it – i.e. perceive, see and approach it – but we primarily, change the way we think and act in the present.

    Futures Literacy aims at strengthening that very capacity of exploring the multiple versions of the future in the present and, consequently, equipping with the ability to understand current events in a deeper level; to share ideas regarding alternative scenarios; to suggest solutions that lay beyond our comfort zones; and deal immediately with the various current challenges.

    For further information:

    UNESCO Futures Literacy-Resources

    Interview about Futures Literacy with Riel Miller, Head of Foresight at UNESCO

    To Think About the Future in a Changing World

  • 07. What does it mean to be Visual Literate within the Futures Literacy framework and why is it important?

    Visual Literacy is a tool that facilitates us to dig into the roots of our assumptions and locate their origin.

    In our daily life, we are surrounded by visuals. Some of them are iconic; however, the majority of them are, at least, familiar. When new visual stimuli emerge, and they constantly do, we attribute meaning and make sense based on our existing experience and memory. We build the new, layer by layer, on top of the old in a perpetual, subconscious and automatic process. Hence, we create ‘visuality’, the condition of “how we see; how we are able, allowed or made to see; and how we see this seeing or the unseen therein” (Foster 1988, ix).

    Visual Literacy is the tool that breaks down our visuality into its components. It helps us recognise the story-behind-the-story that familiar and iconic visuals hold. It helps us understand HOW and WHY we form, individually as well as collectively, our perceptions, fears, hopes, convictions, and, ultimately, anticipatory assumptions that reproduce, in a vicious circle, patterns, values, structures and dominant narratives.

    How we think and how we feel leads to how we re-act, and creates what we are. Visual Literacy makes us aware of where our stories come from and how we built them. It liberates our minds, instils agency and empowers us as individuals. Self-aware individuals make societies more anti-fragile.

    Within the Futures Literacy framework and during the Visual Literacy Laboratories (VLL) participants explore backwards their own visuality and, thus, they comprehend the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of the images they carry in their minds. They develop tools that can profoundly challenge their perceptions about ongoing events, their possibilities, and the nature of the patterns, values and structures they carry; and eventually – and hopefully – this experience will motivate them to curve their own paths in the present and in the future.

    *Foster, H. (ed.). 1988. Vision and visuality. Seattle, WA: Bay Press.

  • 08. How Sustainable Development relates to Cultural Management?

    Cultural management based on sustainable development has many challenges to manage and many more contradictions to balance. Sustainable cultural development aims to create the conditions for inclusive access to cultural goods and services, hence combat social exclusion or exclusion based on national and cultural identity. It focuses, as well, on issues of conservation and promotion of cultural heritage sites in relation to the consequences of climate change and mass tourism. At the same time, encouragement, support and promotion of individual creativity by providing the conditions that secure free expression and participation in collective life constitutes another spearhead within the context of sustainable cultural development. Through inclusive policies that put participatory democracy into practice, people are encouraged to become active co-creators of the future.

    Empirical evidence suggests that inclusive societies are resilient, productive and, above all, adaptive to changes. Resilient citizens can manage their lives and achieve their well-being (Miller 2018). Adaptability and resilience are pivotal concepts within the sustainable development context. Their consequences, empowerment and creativity, are key objectives in Futures Literacy (FL) capacity building methodology. Futures Literacy has been an official UNESCO program since 2012.

    For further information:

    Culture and Sustainable Development

    World Heritage and Sustainable Development

  • 09. What is Sustainable Development?

    Sustainable Development refers to the development that takes into consideration the protection of the environment and nature’s potential to renew its resources, so that the needs of future generations can be satisfied as well. In the context of sustainable development, human activity should aim at a harmonious, balanced and efficient economy where socially just prosperity is enhanced. To that end, society should be sufficiently flexible and wise to support equally its natural and social systems.

    Although, the concept of Sustainable Development was initially used by the discipline of ecology to emphasize the necessity of a rational management of natural resources, later it was adopted by various other disciplines to describe new ways of dealing with challenges that have emerged in the 21st century. Climate change with the rise of global temperatures, the biodiversity decline, public health risks due to pandemics, poverty, social exclusion and the global ageing are now considered within the sustainability context. Acknowledging these needs, UNESCO contributes to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda that aspires to ensure prosperity, protect the planet and strengthen the foundations for peace.

    New challenges lead to the need for new economic, social and environmental policies that will focus on sustainable development. It is high time for people to foster their resilience so that they can handle change in a beneficial manner, while developing new and dynamic socio-ecological systems (Folke, 2016).

    Flexible societies can respond positively and creatively to constantly altering conditions, either by improvising, or by adapting and/or renewing their management strategies. Covid-19 world health crisis has proved that societies that responded positively to challenges were those that adapted or transformed their structures and procedures more quickly and effectively, compared to those which resisted change.

    For further information:

    The Kyoto Protocol

  • 10. What is the main assumption and the starting point for Futures Literacy (FL)?

    A fundamental starting point in Futures Literacy is that although the future exists only in our imagination, it nevertheless plays a significant role in the present.

    How does this happen?

    The images and assumptions we have about the future create, and are created by, our innate anticipatory systems. They decisively influence, consciously or subconsciously, our daily lives, because they are the driving forces behind our attention, actions and decisions in the present. A common example to understand how we use images of the future in our daily lives is the image of a newborn. When a baby is born, we all expect it to grow up, walk, talk, acquire skills and go through a full life cycle. Therefore, the answer to the question of “how can we do something about the future, given that it does not exist” lies precisely on the concept of anticipation.

    To describe something that ontologically does not exist, we first assume that it will exist; secondly, we make assumptions; and then predictions with which we then create the future. Therefore, although the future does not exist in the present, its prediction and expectation already exists. Both prediction and expectation gear our actions for the future and, for that precise reason they constitute valuable tools that help us see different alternative images of the future.

    For further information:

    Riel Miller, 2020. Transforming the Future: Anticipation in the 21st Century

    Anticipation for Emergence

  • 11. What are the anticipatory systems?

    Anticipatory systems refer to the innate ability we have as humans to process and make sense of information with an aim to predict events.

    The future is not something lost in the depths of time; it exists in every next moment. Prediction helps us to 'construct' (invent) images for the future. Our personal perceptions for reality, our expectations, and our internal value system inevitably shape and reinforce these images. While hopes, dreams, fears, concerns are about the future, they actually determine our thoughts and actions in the present.

    By exploring how we anticipate, we clarify better the origin and nature of the images we have for the future. Futures Literacy learners radically challenge the way they view their future when acknowledging how various personal anticipatory systems are constructed. Therefore, the future ceases to be a destination pre-constructed and strictly predetermined. Instead, it becomes a dynamic and friendly space despite constant change: preparation and improvisation exist side-by-side and constant challenges turn into infinite possibilities.

    Futures Literacy helps people realise the role assumptions hold in shaping the future as well as the present, in the sense that they realize that future does not just happen to them, but, indeed, they are its author and co-creator. New anticipatory images become the starting point for a variety of original solutions regarding problem solving in their individual or collective lives in the present.

    For further information:

    Transforming the Future: Anticipation in the 21st Century

    Anticipation for Emergence

  • 12. What do participants in a Futures Literacy (FL) and Visual Literacy (VL) Laboratory experience?

    Future Literacy (FL) and Visual Literacy (VL) laboratories apply to a wide range of topics - from culture and education to politics, economics, environment, social structures and institutions, to name only a few - and are designed by experienced facilitators.

    During a Futures Literacy and Visual Literacy Laboratories (FLL and VLL) and through Collective Intelligence Knowledge Creation (CIKC) process participants learn a new capability. CIKC encourages participation, experimentation and creativity, and is applicable to everyone regardless of age, culture, cognitive level and professional occupation.

    Participants in FL workshops push their thinking, liberate their imagination, and go beyond what they think is reasonable, likely, probable, plannable, desirable or governable. While reconciling their relationship with the certainty-uncertainty dipole, they enhance their ability to imagine and experiment with innovative solutions.

    Visual Literacy adds to the above process by digging into the roots of our assumptions and by locating their origin in visual imagery. By drawing from our daily interaction with a broad variety of images it assists participants to explore the ‘why’ and ‘how’ of their thinking and acting. Once they understand the perceptions that determine their anticipatory assumptions, they recognise as well the story-behind-the-story that dominant narratives hold. Hence, participants develop tools that can profoundly challenge their perceptions about ongoing events, their possibilities, and the nature of the patterns, values and structures they carry.

    For further information:

    Futures Literacy Knowlabs

    Futures Literacy Labs for Education

    Learning arenas through Future Literacy Laboratories

    Resilience Frontiers, A Futures Literacy Laboratory, UNESCO

  • 13. UNESCO Chairs of Futures Literacy (FL)

    Through the institution of UNESCO Chairs, the Organization actively supports Futures Literacy (FL) and its effort to build tools that will challenge delimiting perceptions on the present and the future, individually as well as collectively.

    Since 2012, a constantly expanding global network of dynamic partnerships with universities and international organizations conducts research and puts into practice the principles of FL by actively involving participants in Futures Literacy Laboratories (FLL) around the world.

    For further information:

    Futures Literacy. Anticipation in the 21st century