Copenhagen Creative Task Force

Earlier this week Copenhagen Creative Task Force published their recommendations for Copenhagen to retain their position as a leading creative hub in Northern Europe.

There are 20 concrete recommendations in the report which have been divided into four main strands:

  1. Copenhagen as front-runner
  2. Business development
  3. Open city with big events
  4. Marketing the city as a green and creative metropolis.

The authors estimate that an additional 5,000 jobs can be created in the creative industries in Copenhagen in the coming five years if their recomnnedations are implemented. They stress the importance of working with creative industries across the public, private and NGO sectors in achieving these ambitious goals of sector growth.

Looking at the four strands in a little more detail, the first strand draws on the fact that Copenhagen, like many other cities, has a net growth of citizens, which in turn requires additional housing, infrastructure etc. Copenhagen will strive to use creative suppliers for these development and expansion projects. Also procurement is seen as a major lever for making Copenhagen a frontrunner by selecting suppliers from the creative industries. Interestingly, Centre for Local Economic Strategies in Manchester has done some interesting work on procurement and how cities can procure more intelligently. Also, NESTA ran a pilot project in Manchester a couple of years ago called Creative Credits which looked at stimulating product innovation by using creative companies as suppliers. The research showed that companies which do this are 25% more likely to introduce product innovations.

The second strand focuses on seven concrete inititives to improve the conditions for business development and address some of the existing short comings. The main recommendation is to create a beacon – or flagship – district in the old meat packing district of the city in order to create an opportunity for shared services and synergies to arise. The hope is that this will drive growth in smaller hubs across the city. While this is laudable and might work for many, I personally think that there needs to remain support and opportunity in other places too and for these shared services to crop up where and when they are needed. In the 21st century it is a fallacy to anchor things too tightly to physical locations. In addition to the physcial location of the meat packing district, there is also focus on specialising in Art & Technology as a theme and seemingly a strong focus on music as a sector.

The third strand focuses very much on events in the creative industries like Copenhagen Fashion Week, the documentary film festival CPH:DOX and the culinary festival Copenhagen Cooking. Interestingly, a throughgoing these is to interweave sustainability agenda across events. Copenhagen has ambitious goals for sustainability and these will be incorporated in the running of events.

The fourth and final strand looks at marketing of Copenhagen’s creative industries. The main thing here is that Copenhagen plans to open an office in Beijing to market Copenhagen as a creative and sustainable capital.

Overall this is an excellent report with many good points, which I am sure will contribute to creative industries development in the Danish capital.

The complete report is available in Danish here.

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