Network was delighted to partner with People’s Palace Projects and with the Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre in a series of workshops exploring priorities for the development of the creative-industries policies we will need to address the challenges and opportunities of the coming decades. These workshops were held in Glasgow, in Manchester, in Cardiff and in London, and took place between 23 Sept and 2 Oct 2019. Each of the workshops involved researchers, creative practitioners, and policymakers. They provided rich evidence of the diversity of approaches to the development of creative economy policies across the UK. This evidence will be used to shape the findings of an international project led by Prof. Leandro Valiati and Prof. Paul Heritage and funded by the British Academy/Newton Fund, ‘Counting Culture’, which is developing a comparative analysis of creative-economy policies in the UK and Brazil:
Particular thanks go to Professor Philip Schlesinger (University of Glasgow); Dr Zoe Bulaitis (University of Manchester); and Dr Caitriona Noon (Cardiff University) for facilitating the workshops in each of these cities and for attracting such energetic, informed, and inspiring participants.
The workshops explored: the key role of place within cultural policy; the limitations of available data about creative industries and creative occupations; the diversity of support and investment needed in different sectors of the creative economy; the complex relationships between UK-wide creative institutions and the nations and regions of the UK; the historical origins of the idea of ‘the creative economy’ and its limitations; the importance of connecting cultural policy to economic and development policies; what makes a convincing narrative of creative-economy impacts; operating within a global creative marketplace; understandings of ‘research and development’ within creative businesses; skills shortages within the creative economy; data and the representation of value; and the paucity of economic data on sole-traders within the creative economy.
Each workshop ended with a provocation from young creative practitioners who had participated in the workshop, reflecting on the question of ‘the creative industries in the 2020’s – futures for social and economic development’.