Upcoming Event – ‘Creative Industries, Innovation & the Smart Economy’ Seminar

Time: 12.00-17.00

Date: Wednesday, 25th November 2009

Venue: Arás Moyola, National University of Ireland, Galway

The Western Development Commission, together with the Centre for Innovation & Structural Change (CISC), NUI Galway is hosting a half-day Seminar on ‘Creative Industries, Innovation & the Smart Economy’.  The seminar will contribute to the WDC’s strategy to promote and develop the creative sector in the Creative West, as well as examine the role of creativity in innovation and the move towards a ‘smart economy’.

‘… 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 separation of ‘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.

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 WDC (Creative West: The creative sector in the Western Region, 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 sector 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.  Speakers include:

  • Prof. Robert Huggins, Cardiff School of Management, University of Wales Institute and Director of Centre for International Competitiveness
  • Mr. Paul Cummins, CEO, Telegeal
  • Mr. Niall Ó Donnchú, Assistant Secretary General, Department of Arts, Sport & Tourism
  • Ms. Helen Murphy, Head of Education, Training & Development, Crafts Council of Ireland
  • Dr. Patrick Collins, Centre for Innovation & Structural Change at NUI, Galway
  • Ms. Pauline White, Policy Analyst, Western Development Commission

To see full details of the programme and to confirm your attendance, please register on-line for this free event at CREATIVE INDUSTRIES REGISTRATION or visit www.conference.ie for more information.