The Creative Communities Unite: An Intercity Gathering conference is happening on 9 to 11 August at Areté Creativity Hub, Ateneo de Manila University, Quezon City, Philippines. It will bring together the country’s creative hubs through networking and skills building.
The event is the culmination of Creative Innovators Fellowship, a programme launched last year by the British Council, Design Center of the Philippines-Department of Trade and Industry in partnership with Thames International , Areté Creativity Hub, Ateneo de Manila and Apl.de.Ap Foundation. The programme aims to drive synergy between creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship for social impact. The 84 applications received last year from hubs all over the Philippines indicated that a good number of creative hubs are emerging in the country.
Two hundred creative hub managers, community leaders and creative entrepreneurs from major cities in the Philippines are invited to attend the conference, share best practices and explore potential collaborative opportunities. Representatives from the United Kingdom and Southeast Asia are also invited to talk about the creative scene in their own cities.
“I wanted to search for a better and faster way to achieve sustainability in my hub. If there’s anything that the Fellowship taught me, it’s that a group of like-hearted people can achieve so much more—and quicker—together,” shares Gino Cariño of Makerspace Manila and a Creative Innovators Fellow.
Creative hubs are organisations that provide space and support for product and professional development, networking, business sustainability and community engagement within the creative and cultural sectors. Examples of these hubs include design studios, co-working spaces, makerspaces, fablabs and art collectives.
A recent global research study conducted by the British Council found that hubs are catalysts for innovation, inclusive growth in the creative economy, and positive change in cities. However, the research also pointed out that creative hubs are often under-supported and under-appreciated by institutions and stakeholders. In addition, creative hub managers frequently lack the necessary skills, networks and business knowledge to sustain their hubs and communicate their value in society.
Globally, the creative sector is worth 3 per cent of the world’s GDP and employs 29.5 billion people (CISAC, 2015). In the UK, it is the fastest growing sector, valued at $122 billion. In the Philippines, government has declared culture, and more specifically, the creative economy, as a priority sector for development. The sector currently employs almost 6 million workers, and makes up $12.5 billion or 7.34 per cent of the Philippines’ GDP from copyright-based industries such as design, literature, music, theatre, film, media, photography, software, visual arts, and advertising services (IPOPHIL, 2014).
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