Creative Industries and Creative Communities: Policy Futures?


Creative Industries and Creative Communities:

Policy Futures?

Creative Industries and Creative Communities

Institute for Environment, Sustainability and Regeneration

Staffordshire University, 11 th November 2009

Calvin Taylor

Chair in Cultural Industries

Calvin Taylor

• Academic

– Huddersfield Creative Town

Initiative (1998-2000)

– Creative Yorkshire (2000-2002)

– 40+ strategic and practical projects in UK and abroad

(RDAs, DCMS, British Council,


• Director, Creative Industries

Development Agency (2000present).

– From Huddersfield to the world

Design and deliver programs of mentoring, network development, skills and leadership development to business, community, citizens and artists

– New focus – creativity and innovation in service delivery

CRECE, Manizales, Colombia 2005

The Creative Industries : Are we becoming sceptical?

1. Questions about the availability of robust and appropriate evidence

2. Questions about the instrumentalisation of culture

3. Questions about the social value of creative industries employment

Are we in danger of throwing out the baby with the bath-water?

Do we need a new stand-point?

Where might one come from?

Four propositions:

1. Whether we like it or not, mobilising culture and creativity for regeneration or development is an inherently political process

– and the politics have gone awry

2. There is a lot to be learned from the UK experience, despite valid critiques of some of the arguments

3. The arguments about the value of culture and creativity are not dependent on data – reality moves faster than data

4. The future of creative industries, creative communities depends on: knowledge, experience, some data but most important of all - getting the right mix of intervention at the right level


So, where have we come from?

A growing global industry….late 1990s-early noughties

Country % GDP/GVA % Employment % GDP Growth pa



Great Britain















New Zealand











USA 7.8



Sources: DCMS, WIPO, NZ Institute of Economic Research, Stephen Siwek, Allen Consulting Group, Taiwan Institute of Economic Research.


………..A reminder of where we came from?

1. Social democratic cultural policy

2. Connecting culture to enterprise

3. Community development objectives

Municipal socialism

Greater London Council

Greater London Enterprise Board

Promotion of co-operative enterprise

Application to arts and culture

1. Infra-structure strategies

2. Attention to working environments

3. Basic clustering model

4. Culture intrinsic to urban development

Local cultural production strategies: Sheffield, Red

Tape Studios and the Cultural Industries Quarter

“This cultural policy is also an economic policy. Culture creates wealth.

Broadly defined, our cultural industries generate 13 billion dollars a year.

Culture employs. Around 336,000 Australians are employed in culture-related industries. Culture adds value, it makes an essential contribution to innovation, marketing and design. It is a badge of our industry. The level of our creativity substantially determines our ability to adapt to new economic imperatives. It is a valuable export in itself and an essential accompaniment to the export of other commodities. It attracts tourists and students. It is essential to our economic success”

Creative Nation: A Commonwealth Cultural Policy, Australia, 1994

Available at:


Don’t need to be shy about connecting culture to wealth creation

Creative entrepreneurship: Richard


7 economic properties

1.The nobody knows anything principle

2.The art for art sake principle (craft, skill, virtuosity)

3.The motley crew principle (project orientated with flexible, inter-changeable staff (Film industry one of the earliest, advertising, but also now more traditional art-forms)

4.Product infinite variety

– the ‘batch’ principle, short production runs, customisation, personalisation – ‘flexible-specialisation’

(Piore and Sabel)

5.A List/B List principle – personalised branding, small differences in skill mean big differences in economic return

6.The time flies principle

– time does literally mean money

7.The ars longa principle

– some works achieve/maintain value long after their production – allowing economic rents to be derived from them.

1. Encouraged focused attention on need for intelligence and knowledge

See Richard Caves (2000) Contracts between art and commerce.

Also see Henry, C (2007) Entrepreneurship in the creative industries: international perspectives (especially Chapters 4 and 7)

The creative industries…

……, or is it creative economy…..?

1. Importance of definitions and data

Models I

Markets and audiences

Ideasgenerating capacity

1. Understand the value of a localities cultural and creative attributes

Ideas into practice

Platforms for delivery

Networking and circulating

Cycle of Creativity

: Wood, P & Taylor, C ‘Big ideas for a small town: the Huddersfield creative town initiative’, Local economy, Vol. 19


Factor Conditions

 Location & transport connections

 Huddersfield’s built environment

(heritage & conversion uses)

 Competitive property prices


Business Support


 Well established sector-specific agencies

Regional Sectoral


 Critical mass of businesses

 Physical & virtual hubs to anchor and animate SME base

 Raised profile of Kirklees in region

& nationally



 Strengths in key disciplines at HE & FE

 Supply of well skilled labour

 Formal & non-formal routes to employment established

 Individual sector champions

Demand Conditions

 Weak overall local demand

 Particularly in higher value / more challenging segments


Knowledge Infrastructure

 Questions over political will to engage in strategic projects

Factor Conditions

 Industrial base relatively narrow (in activity, source of demand, business model)

 Makes cluster vulnerable to volatility of business cycle

Business Support


 Weaknesses of mainstream business support compared with other sub-regions


 Negative image abides in some quarters of the region (corporate market and the media)

Leadership & Partnership

 Low level of joint working across the sector

 Lack of focal point for promoting the sector

 Perceived loss of momentum


Competitive Dynamics of Diversifying Business Base Factor Conditions

 Grow micros into small firms

 Develop non-Books & Press segments

 Encourage IP-based businesses

 Improve robustness & sustainability

Building on Success

 Sector upbeat about future prospects

 Further potential to be unlocked

 Kirklees can build on regional

 Rising property costs

 Pressure on availability of suitable property

 Potential business climate/image as a centre for ‘lifestyle’ businesses

UK Print & Publishing


 Sector heavily dependent on

P&P for jobs & wealth creation

 Local future in part contingent on spatial restructuring

 potential investors & partners comparative advantage of

Huddersfield cluster

Competition from the Rest of the Region

Huddersfield’s creative industries: a swot analysis (2002)

 Provide more unified front to  Potential change of attitude in Leeds towards early stage companies

End of ESF & ERDF

European funding

 End of current funding round

1. Inter-linkages

2. Embeddedness

3. Policy levers

Models II: The Creative Industries Cluster

Levels of policy leverage

Simple and


Tactical and Practical

Complex and Invisible

Source: Anamaria Wills, Creative Industries Development Agency

1. Workspace expansion programme

2. External marketing –

‘created in China’

3. Local production clusters

NB: Long-term!

Simple and transformational

Shanghai (2006)

Simple and transformational:

Ciclovia, Bogota, Colombia

1. The most impressive exercise in urban creativity

1. Recognising fragility, delicacy

Tactical and practical:

Tanzania (2005)

Tactical and Practical:



-Creative skills

-Cultural expression


-Economic development

-Social inclusion

-City marketing

The Storey Creative

Industries Centre

Lancaster (2009)

Complex and Invisible

Factory 798, Beijing,

China, 2007

1. The beginnings of a grassroots culture of creative production

Complex and Invisible: Access-space

Free media lab

Open access learning community

From e-consumers to digital producers


1. Re-designing creative economics

Creativity re-discovering culture?

Beijing, 2007

Some references

Cunningham, S. (2004) ‘The creative industries after cultural policy: a genealogy and some possible preferred futures’. International journal of cultural studies, Vol 7(1),


Henry, C. (ed.) (2007). Entrepreneurship in the creative industries: An international perspective. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.

Kong, L. & O’Connor, J. (eds.) (2009) Creative economies, creative cities: Asianeuropean perspectives. Dordrecht: Springer.

Oakley, K. (2004) ‘Not so cool britannia: the role of the creative industries in economic development’. International journal of cultural studies, Vol7(1) 67-77.

Scott, A.J. (2005). Creative cities: conceptual issues and policy questions. Paper presented at OECD International Conference on City Competitiveness, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain 3-4 March 2005.

Wood, P. and Taylor, C. (2004). ‘Big ideas for a small town: the Huddersfield creative town initiative’. Local economy, Vol. 19 (4).

Thank you!