Creative Industries, Innovation &
the Smart Economy
Centre for Innovation & Structural Change, NUI Galway
Western Development Commission
are hosting a
12.00pm - 5.00pm
Wednesday, 25th November 2009
Áras Moyola, NUI Galway
‘… a nation without a vibrant creative labour force of artists, writers, designers, scriptwriters, playwrights, painters, musicians, film producers, directors, actors, dancers, choreographers, not to mention software engineers, new media practitioners, scientists, researchers and intellectuals does not possess the knowledge base to succeed in the information economy’
(Venturelli 2002: 16).
Creative Industries and the Smart Economy are relative newcomers to the policy debate. The old dichotomy that separated ‘cultural industries’ from ‘economic industries’ is waning as more and more research highlights the contribution of the former to the economic performance of places. Recent contributions to creative industries literature have placed creativity at the core of the smart economy, where wealth creation is increasingly driven by ideas, intangibles and the creative application of ICTs. Creativity has been presented as an axial principle of the new economy; as labour, organisation and information have been previously (see Healy 2002; Florida 2002; and Mitchell et. al. 2003).
The current economic downturn provides practitioners, policymakers and industry analysts with a unique opportunity to reflect on the importance of creativity in innovative pursuits. This half-day seminar will build on the recent publication by the Western Development Commission (Creative West, 2009) and provide an opportunity to bring together different sub-groups from within the broadly defined creative industries – creative expression, creative application, creative technology.
From the policy perspective, tough decisions will have to be made in the upcoming Budget. Funding for the arts and culture in general has come under scrutiny. This seminar will examine the logic behind such decisions and ask if there are better ways to depict the contribution of the creative sectors to innovation systems.
The seminar format will be based around keynote speakers from the areas of Policy, Practice and Analysis. After each keynote, a discussant will give more context before opening it up to questions from the floor. It is hoped the format will facilitate a lively and constructive debate on the role of creative industries in Ireland, and the West’s future economy.