Manifesto for the creative economy


Nesta, the independent charity working to promote innovation in the UK, published a ten-point manifesto for the creative economy yesterday, comprising of industries from advertising to video game development, filmmaking and fashion design, to help safeguard the country’s talent and bolster new ones in the face of digital disruption.

The manifesto states the remarkable scale of UK’s creative economy as one of its national strengths that employs 2.5 million people. It points out that the impact of digital technology on society, business and culture isn’t even starting to be truly felt, quoting Tim Berners-Lee: “The Web as I envisaged it, we have not seen it yet. The future is still so much bigger than the past.”

However, it also notes that the U.K. policymakers have failed to keep pace with developments in North America and parts of Asia, especially in the way the latter have better dealt with disruption and business uncertainty with the biggest winners being “digital, American companies focused upon either distribution or devices: Google, Facebook, Amazon and Apple.”

It thus calls for a radical rethink of policies far beyond the traditional boundaries of the arts, encompassing everything from schools to competition policy.

The manifesto’s priorities are to:

– Safeguard the next generation of the internet by ensuring it is truly open

– Give every teenager the chance to create digitally – from digital animation and games to apps

– Taking steps to address the disconnect between what the UK creative businesses need from graduates and what universities are teaching them

– Ensure the many tools designed to incentivise innovation – from tax reliefs to procurement – are adapted to fit the creative economy

–  Help the UK’s creative powerhouses – from the BBC to museums and galleries – make the most of the next generation of digital technologies

With these in mind, one of the recommendations of the Manifesto is that national regulator Ofcom should contribute a regularly updated strategic overview of issues related to the digital and creative economy; advising the government on the actions needed to ensure the country enjoys a “flourishing, open Internet” that balances the interests of consumers and citizens while remaining committed to supporting innovation and growth.

You can download and read more from the Manifesto here.