Thursday, October 8, 2009

An Agenda for the Creative Economy?

Maybe it’s time to think even bigger about the role of art in society - not just to make people feel good and appreciative… and not just to educate and get people talking about important social issues like what we’re trying to do with Looking for Juan

Art can be (assuming it, in fact, is not already) a powerful engine of growth and development.

The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) recently released a report that argues just that point. We’re still going through it, but among others, it notes that:
  • The Philippines is one of the top 10 exporters of visual arts among developing countries.
  • Our creative sector accounts for nearly 5% of gross domestic product.
  • Our creative industries employ more people (11.1% of national employment) than many of the traditional sectors of the economy.
(You can download the report here.)

Maybe it’s time to think about art, or more generally, the creative economy, as a key component for a political agenda - something that we can think about, define, refine, and ask (if not push) the candidates who will be running in 2010 to talk about, commit to, and more fully understand.

It’s something that we’re thinking about these days.

We'll write more, as we continue to reflect about this, soon.

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