Policy and practice round-up December 2018

19 December 2018

This month we bring you news that the Creative Industries are now worth £101bn to the UK economy; the first report from the new Creative Industries Policy and Research Centre; an ISM Future of Music Education report; how to Fly The Flag for UN Human Rights Day; the SSAT Pure Imagination Conference; and a reminder that the Arts Council England 2020-30 Strategy first stage consultation closes on 2 January.

Creative industries worth £101 billion to UK economy, an increase of 53.1% since 2010

On 28 November the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) published their most recent economic figures providing an estimate of the contribution of DCMS Sectors to the UK economy, measured by GVA (gross value added).

  • In 2017 the Creative Industries contributed £101.5 billion to the UK economy. This is an increase of 53.1% since 2010 when it was £66.3bn.
  • The Cultural Sector contributed £29.5bn in 2017, an increase of 38.5% since 2010 when it was £21.3bn. (The Cultural Sector is included in the Creative Industries figures above)

This means that the Creative Industries are growing nearly twice as fast as the rest of the UK economy which has seen a 28.7% increase since 2010.

New Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre (PEC) established

A new Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre (PEC) has been set up to provide independent research and recommendations to support the development of policies for the UK's creative industries.

Hosted and run by Nesta it is formed of a consortium of 10 UK universities. It is part of the Creative Industries Clusters Programme led by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and funded through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

Creativity and the Future of Skills

The PEC’s first report is Creativity and the Future of Skills, which emphasises the importance of developing creativity for future job prospects:

‘Of the 39 transferable skills we consider, “creativity” is consistently the most significant predictor for an occupation’s chance of growing, as a percentage of the workforce by the year 2030.’

The research looked at the skills required in job adverts from 2013-2017, comparing job adverts in the DCMS Creative Occupations list with those outside it, and research on the future of skills conducted by Pearson and Nesta.

Using this data they have been able to show (text below all quoted directly from the PEC report):

  • Creativity is likely to become even more important in the future job market

Although it may seem ubiquitous, far from every job advert lists ‘creativity’ as a requirement. In fact, job adverts for the DCMS Creative Occupations official list are still far more likely to ask for it. Strikingly, jobs asking for creativity are also much more likely to grow as a percentage of the workforce by the year 2030.

  • Employers don’t just value creativity alone: they need talent with project management and organisational skills too

Our analysis suggests that strong project management and organisational skills, when combined with creativity, will be a particularly potent mix in the future. This should be a key takeaway for anyone involved in training or education policy.

  • Creative occupations don’t have a monopoly on creativity

Creativity is not confined to the list of Creative Occupations compiled by the DCMS.

Download the full report and sign up to the PEC newsletter for updates on new research.

Incorporated Society of Musicians (ISM) – Future of Music Education report

ISM, who also host the Bacc for the Future campaign, have published a report on the Future of Music Education drawing on the result of two surveys conducted over the summer of 2018, with 583 responses from music education professionals, and 163 on provision in primary schools.

The report reviews the National Plan for Music Education and sets out recommendations for any future iteration of the plan. It opens with some key reminders of why music education is so important:

When schools teach music, the whole of our society and economy benefits. The music industry in Britain is worth £4.4bn a year to the economy. From an international perspective, it punches massively above its weight. Britain has less than 1% of the world population, but one in seven albums sold worldwide in 2014 was by a British act. This is a critical part of Britain’s soft power.

It sets out the history of music education policy in England over the last 15 years and includes a useful summary of the current evidence base on the state of music provision in England’s schools. Issues highlighted in the surveys included the impact of accountability measures on provision of music in schools; the role of specialist teachers; teacher CPD; and how music teachers are employed by hubs. The findings also reinforce the need for the planned changes to the Ofsted inspection framework to ensure a broad and balanced education.

The report concludes with a series of recommendations including:

  • Give clear guidance to all schools that headline accountability measures must not erode the delivery of a broad and balanced curriculum at Key Stage 3, and make it clear that a narrow curriculum will impact adversely on Ofsted inspections and evaluations.
  • Overhaul metrics for measuring Hubs’ achievement, and focus on the quality of provision and outcomes rather than levels of activity.
  • Ensure that all teachers are supported to access regular and relevant high-quality subject specific continuing professional development.
  • Ensure that there is a sufficient number of properly qualified teachers coming through to support the delivery of music education in our schools and Hubs.

Fly the Flag for Human Rights – UN Human Rights Day 10 December

To mark the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, artist and activist Ai Weiwei has designed a flag for human rights. The flag was launched on 10 December by a range of arts and human rights organisations across the UK with the aim of empowering everyone in the UK to learn about, embrace and uphold their human rights.

Organisations across the UK are being asked to Fly the Flag for human rights on 24 - 30 June 2019. There are resources for schools on the Fly The Flag website and you can also download the Fly the Flagpack.

SSAT Pure Imagination Conference

The Specialist Schools and Academy Trust (SSAT) conference held on 5-6 December in Birmingham had as this year’s theme ‘Pure Imagination’. The conference blog is a good read and includes details of the discussions about creativity, the decline of arts subjects, and social justice, one of the CLA key themes this year.

The theme of the 2019 conference is Deep Social Justice, 4-5 December 2019. 

Arts Council England Strategy 2020-2030: first stage consultation closes 2 January

For those of you who have not yet had a chance to respond to the first stage of the Arts Council England consultation on their 2020-2030 Strategy, do note that it closes on 2 January.

You can read our summary of the consultation and respond on the ACE website.


Image credit: Leeds Museums and Galleries, Leeds Discovery Centre. Credit: LMG.