The cultural environment - Finnish Heritage Agency The cultural environment

The cultural environment

The environment shows traces of human activities and interaction with nature, from the prehistoric period to the modern day. Landscapes of various types and ages, built environments and archaeological heritage form what is known as the cultural environment.

The concept of cultural environment is often associated with positive images related to history. The cultural environment shows traces from the prehistoric era to the modern day. Its temporal dimension is therefore quite extensive. The value placed on cultural environments is specific to a culture, time and place. These values may vary, depending on the time period. In addition, also those places that we do not wish to see or remember are part of the cultural environment.

The cultural environment has significant social and cultural value. Some of the cultural environment is protected or otherwise defined as particularly valuable. The cultural environment also entails intangible values. It can be viewed as the foundation for the collective memory and identity of communities and people.

Everyone is entitled to a good cultural environment, and we are all responsible for safeguarding it. The strata and continuity of our environment allow people to become oriented, understand the present time and build the future.