Creative UK launches manifesto for change

Creative UK launches manifesto for change
Image credit: Dim Hou via Pixabay

Creative UK has launched a manifesto calling for radical action across the cultural and creative industries.

Called Our Creative Future, Creative UK’s Manifesto for the UK General Election is calling for the following key points to be addressed:

Greater access to creative education; maintaining the UK’s ‘gold standard’ Intellectual Property protections for the cultural and creative Industries in the age of AI; the appointment of a new government Freelance Commissioner, and a new Cultural Touring Agreement with the EU to allow enhanced freedom of movement for UK creatives.

Organisations including Royal College of Art, Edinburgh Festival Fringe, BECTU, Royal Shakespeare Company, The Advertising Association, The National Theatre, Ubisoft and BPI, as well as author/entrepreneur Sir Ian Livingstone are featured in the manifesto, which sets out a vision for the future of creative education and skills; freelancing; funding and investment models; IP protection and protections for UK creatives in future trade deals.

In 2023, the GVA contribution of the Cultural and Creative Industries was almost £125bn – representing almost 6% of the economy. Jobs within the sector are currently created at three times the UK average rate – with 1.8 million people in the industries, alongside a further 700,000 self-employed workers.

Commenting on the launch, Caroline Norbury, chief executive, Creative UK, said: “This is a decisive moment for the UK’s Cultural and Creative Industries. The sector is driving real growth for the economy, while creating jobs and meaningful work at an extraordinary pace. However, creatives are also struggling with issues such as widespread cuts to creative education, reducing levels of funding and financial models that are long longer fit for purpose, as well as difficult trading conditions.”

“How we act today will lay the foundations for tomorrow’s successes. Outlined in our manifesto are six areas which we believe will bring maximum benefit to our country. This publication is not about dwelling on problems. It’s about providing solutions. There is a version of the future where the Cultural and Creative Industries are not only thriving but are driving growth across the wider economy.”

Ian Livingstone said: “There have been two main pillars to my lifelong career in games: creativity and finance. On the surface, they might not appear to have much in common. But having co-founded Games Workshop, Fighting Fantasy, Eidos Interactive, and Hiro Capital, as well as being Chair of Sumo Group plc – I have seen firsthand how the two can be inextricably linked. 

 “We need ways to support businesses which create and exploit Intellectual Property. Their assets might be intangible but their potential to scale can be enormous with resultant uplift in enterprise value. We need to inject capital into small and micro companies since many creative businesses fall into this category.

“And we need a patient approach to long-term growth which connects the dots between culture, creativity, R&D, IP, funding, investment and commercial success. It is vital to support creators to enable them to scale and travel further up the value chain of IP ownership to generate significant revenues and taxable income in the UK before selling out to global players.”

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