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<nettime-ann> [ann] MyCreativity -- first announcement
Sabine Niederer on Sat, 4 Mar 2006 00:35:20 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime-ann> [ann] MyCreativity -- first announcement


Convention of International Creative Industries Researchers
First Announcement

Date: 17-18 November, 2006
Venue: Club 11, Post CS Building, Amsterdam
Organisation: Institute of Network Cultures, HvA and Centre for
MediaResearch, University of Ulster
Concept: Geert Lovink & Ned Rossiter
More information: info {AT} networkcultures.org, Sabine Niederer.


Emerging out of Blair's Britain in the late 90s as an antidote
topost-industrial unemployment, early creative industries discourse
wasnotable for a promotional hype characteristic of the dot.com era in
theUS. Over the past 3-5 years creative industries has undergone a
processof internationalisation and become a permanent fixture in
theshort-term interests that define government policy packages across
theworld. At the policy level, creative industries have managed
totranscend the North-South divide that preoccupied research on
theinformation economies and communication technologies for two decades.

Today, one finds countries as diverse as Austria, Brazil, Singapore
andNew Zealand eagerly promoting the promise of exceptional
economicgrowth rates of "culture" in its "immaterial" form. Governments
in HongKong, Japan, Australia, and the Netherlands have initiated
creativeindustries policy platforms with remarkably similar assumptions
andexpectations given their very different cultural and

Despite the proliferation of the creative industries model, it
remainshard to point to stories of actual "creative innovation", or to be
evensure what this might mean. What is clear -if largely unacknowledged -
is that investment in "creative clusters" effectively functions
toencourage a corresponding boom in adjacent real estate markets.
Herelies perhaps the core truth of the creative industries: the
creativeindustries are a service industry, one in which state investment
in"high culture" shifts to a form of welfarism for property
developers.This smoke and mirrors trick is cleverly performed through a
languageof populist democracy that appeals to a range of political and
businessagents. What is more surprising is the extent to which this hype
isseemingly embraced by those most vulnerable: namely, the
contentproducers (designers, software inventors, artists, filmmakers,
etc.) ofcreative information (brands, patents, copyrights).

Much research in the creative industries is highly
speculative,interpretive and economistic, concerned with large-scale
industry datarather than the network of formal and informal relations
that makepossible creative production. It is also usually produced
quickly, withlittle detailed qualitative analysis of the structure of
economicrelationships creative industries firms operate in. In many
cases, thepolicy discourses travel and are taken up without critical
appraisal ofdistinctly local conditions.

In contrast to the homogeneity of creative industries at the policylevel,
there is much localised variation to be found in terms of thematerial
factors that shape the development of creative industriesprojects. For
example, a recent UNCTAD (2004) policy report on creativeindustries and
development makes note of the "precarious"
nature ofemployment for many within the creative industries. Such
attention tothe uneven and variable empirics of creative industries marks
adeparture from much of the hype that characterised earlier
creativeindustries discourse, and also reflects the spread of this
discourseout of highly developed market economies to ones where the
privatesector has a very different role.

This conference wishes to bring these trends and tendencies intocritical
question. It seeks to address the local, intra-regional andtrans-national
variations that constitute international creative industries as an uneven
field of actors, interests and conditions. 
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