Dundee’s Creative Industries Strategy – What’s Next?

In 2017, Dundee’s first Creative Industries Strategy was launched, this city-wide strategy brought together future recommendations for the direction of the city’s creative sector over the next few years, which had come from many conversations and consultations with creative practitioners/businesses and the organisations who support them. Now, as we start an exciting new year for the city, it’s also time for us collectively to make these recommendations a reality!

The three key recommendations within Dundee’s Creative Industries Strategy 2017 – 2021 include:

  • Broadening routes into the creative industries from school, college and University.
  • Collaborating with other sectors, such as health care, tourism, social enterprise sectors, to create greater impact.
  • Developing innovative ways to share underused city spaces and resources.

The creative industries are one of the fastest growing industry sectors in the UK, and Dundee is increasingly being acknowledged as defining the strategy for other global cities in how it harnesses creativity and cultural resources to develop a better, more connected city.

Last October saw the launch of the strategy, which you can watch here, where we heard from John Kampfner, Chief Executive of the Creative Industries Federation, who said that this coming together of the local creative industries is more than just symbolic, it is a practical way of identifying where and how the next growth in the economy can be generated. In his words: “Dundee has for quite some time packed a punch, the view from afar is already very strong. The reason is that you are incredibly enlightened, incredibly joined up – you are actually the microcosm, the model of what we would like to see the whole UK being like – that is commercial, for profit creative industries companies, of all scales.”

You can view, download, comment on and even listen to the strategy at www.dundeecreates.com, as it includes a complete audio version.

Beth Bate, Director of the DCA, also spoke about the meaning of a strategy like this in a city like Dundee: “The strategy is clearly a strong indicator of how much Dundee values its creative industries, from its cultural venues, to its leading Universities, from the commercial sectors particularly digital and gaming, to the many creative practitioners who live and work in the city – creativity and culture are clear priorities for the city and catalysts for its continued development and growth.”  

Are you currently part of a project which supports/promotes any of these recommendations? We’d love to hear from you! You can just get in touch or comment on the online strategy. We recognise that the way the city can move forward with these goals is by hearing from the work that is already happening, learning from each other’s expertise and creating opportunities for different groups to collaborate – so this is a crucial step in the process.

Colin Anderson, Kirsty Stevens and Clare Brennan

“We need to really support those people that are brave enough to turn their creative motivations into a business, because that’s a big, big step. I think what’s contained within the Strategy is a document that really validates that process, that sets that up as a real possibility.” Clive Gillman, Director Creative Industries, Creative Scotland.

And to make sure that a rising tide lifts all boats, collaborating in the context of the strategy helps us develop something that is inclusive and takes into account the many different groups in Dundee. As was the point made by Clare Brennan, NEoN & Weave, at the launch, who described the city as rich in interconnectedness between disciplines by a Dundee-specific spirit of generosity and collaboration. Colin Anderson from Denki, also sees this grass roots nature of the creative industries in the city, and what’s really exciting him is the investment around the Tay Cities deal particularly for digital media – Scottish Games Studio and the UK Games Fund’s Studiotel project.

Finally, Kirsty Stevens, from Charcot, also spoke about the creative community that’s unique to Dundee. Her time working in London, competing with all the other graduates who go there, made her realise all of the exciting opportunities in Dundee, including becoming a V&A Dundee design ambassador.

If you feel like you are working on any of the key recommendations in the bullet-points above, please do get in touch; and even if you’re not sure how your project connects with anything we talked about here but feel keen to connect – do not hesitate!

You can email us or comment on the online version of the strategy.

www.dundeecreates.com

#DundeeCreates

You can have a look at the photos from the launch event. And check out the social media round up here.