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Seizing the potential of creativity for Local Enterprise Partnerships

Our five takeaways from Creative Industries Council’s event last week

​Last week, BOP participated in an event on what the Cultural and Creative Industries (CCI) can do for Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs).

The meeting was convened by the Creative Industries Council (CIC), in partnership with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the LEP Network, with the support of the KTN.

Our five takeaways are:

  1. Local Industrial Strategies (LIS) are an opportunity to revivify ambitions - the West Midlands, Greater Manchester and the Oxford-Cambridge Corridor spoke of their experiences as trailblazer regions, developing Local Industrial Strategy (LIS) in partnership with Whitehall. The government intends the whole of the country to have a LIS in place by 2020
  2. The CCIs are strong candidates for featuring in LIS - “We have clusters around the UK with the potential to reach world-class status, with many more middle-ranking clusters besides,” argued Peter Bazalgette in his independent review of the creative industries. “The challenge is for local partnerships of councils, LEPs, higher education and business to develop long-term strategies which merit and receive tailored support from government and national agencies”
  3. Understanding of what grows local creative sectors is building - the Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre (PEC) attended. One of their work strands is looking at two ways that location impacts the creative industries: creative clusters, and innovation. In addition, a digest of relevant resources is being compiled here
  4. National organisations want to help - from the Creative Industries Federation to Creative England, from Arts Council England to UK Interactive Entertainment (UKIE), and many more besides, the event showcased the offers of national organisations to localities. Some back this up with commitments – for example, the British Film Institute (BFI) will devolve 25% of all its production funding to decision-makers based outside London by 2022
  5. LEPs should dream big - we heard impressive testimony on LEP achievements – including how Coventry and Warwickshire delivered the blueprint for their games cluster, developed by BOP.

While LEPs need to diligently form alliances and take the right lessons from the evidence, these efforts should be fuelled by big ambitions. The CCI toolkit that we developed for CIC provides plenty of inspiring examples of places making realities of big dreams. The sense of civic mission that animates these journeys is indispensable.

Our CCI toolkit here.

- Jonathan Todd, Chief Economist