Andy’s work in the FT
Andy Pratt has been working on the problems of measurement and the important evidence of the flows of cultural trade for a number of years. His work underpinned the methodology of the seminal UNCTAD Creative Economy report which was the first time that cultural trade was measured and the impact was understood on national economies. Indeed, a subsequent UNCTAD and UNESCO report on the Creative Economy highlighted the fact that the Creative Economy rate of growth globally was exceeding most of there ‘traditional’ industries (such as manufacturing and chemicals), and that the Creative Economy had continued to grow throughout the 2010 recession. Finally, and most significantly, the growth rate for the Global South exceeded that of the Global North, laying to bed the notion the the Creative Economy is only relevant to the Global North.
However, despite this initial work little progress has been made at nation state level to refine, improve and systematise these measures. To the extent that they are often overlooked in National government strategies. A case in point is the UK, which in many senses pioneered the measurement of the ‘Creative Industries’. An article in the Financial Times today highlights Andy’s work and the fact that the UK Creative Industries are being overlooked, and despite their huge economic and cultural value this is seldom acknowledged by governments. For example the support and investment in Chemical s and the Car industry is a ‘legitimate’ focus for policy and investment; culture and creative city seems to be ‘a special case’ (despite the economic facts being the obverse).