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Geography of the Creative Industries

Geography of the Creative Industries


Companies, organisations and practitioners in the creative industries tend to be physically near each other, often in localised clusters. But where do creative clusters tend to appear? What impact do they have on people, companies and places? And where can researchers – and crucially, policymakers – focus their efforts. The research in this theme looks at identifying where creative businesses are located, why they cluster together and the impact of these creative clusters on innovation.

Publications and Posts

Research Reports
Improving economic statistics in the creative industries

Towards multi-regional creative industries satellite accounts In today’s ever-evolving economi…

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Mapping and examining the determinants of England’s rural creative microclusters

More targeted support could unleash the potential of Rural Creative Enterprises It is well documente…

abstract illustration of Preston city
Supporting the Creative Industries: The impact of the ‘Preston Model’ in Lancashire

The economic geography of the UK is highly uneven, with many of the largest clusters concentrating i…

VR Headset
Createch activity in the UK

Createch is an emerging field that combines technology and creativity in novel ways. This report is …

building with advertising board in Belfast Northern Ireland
Cultural brokerage and creative clusters

Future Screens NI and levelling-up in a pandemic environment Future Screens NI is one of nine creati…

street wall art
Creative Radar 2021: The impact of COVID-19 on the UK’s creative industries

This is the second report from the Creative Radar series, by PEC researchers at the University of Su…

image of urban industrial building with signage on exterior - courtesy of Alyssa Bossom
Creative radar: Mapping the UK’s creative industries

Major urban centres are the sorts of places we would expect to find creative businesses clustered to…

Discussion Papers
metal wire art installation - courtesy of Alina Grubnyak
International Trade Challenges and the Effectiveness of Support Measures for the UK’s Creative Industries

The formidable challenges confronting the UK’s creative industries in the realm of exports, st…

High Street
Northern England’s Creative Industries

The Creative Industries are already a driver of growth across the UK economy. Export-intensive and m…

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Creative Destruction? Creative firms, workers and residential gentrification

A new study by Tasos Kitsos, Max Nathan, and Diana Gutierrez-Posada finds only a minor influence of …

Family watching a tablet
Speaking with One Voice

A fundamental remit of the BBC, and other public service broadcasters (PSBs) like ITV and Channel 4,…

Dance performance
Transitioning to Sustainable Production across the UK Theatre Sector

This discussion paper examines transitional pathways to sustainable theatre production in the UK. By…

Policy Briefings
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Policy briefing: Creative industries innovation in seaside resorts and country towns

This policy brief is based on a PEC Discussion Paper: Creative Industries Innovation in Seaside Reso…

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Placemaking, Culture and Covid

In September 2021, we consulted a Panel of our Industry Champions on their experiences of …

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Creative places: Growing the creative industries across the UK

This is in part because of the economic importance of the sector: one in eight UK businesses are par…

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Mapping the R&D landscape for creative technologies

Creative technologies (“CreaTech”) will play an increasingly big role driving innovation and g…

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The importance of a UK-wide recovery plan for the creative industries

New research shows that following the global financial crisis in 2008 we saw an accelerated tre…

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How policymakers can support local growth in the creative industries

As part of our research agenda around local growth, we consulted our Industry Champions on…

Press Releases
Access to Finance: launch of new research project

New research is being undertaken by Creative UK in partnership with the Creative Industries Policy a…

New research points to a looming creative economy skills shortage across the UK

New report shows ‘severe’ decline in creative further education participation Embargoed 17 July 00.0…

Press Release: New research, including – once in a decade data – provides comprehensive overview of audiences and workforce across arts, culture and heritage.

Embargoed 00.01 Wednesday 15 May 2024 (BST) For the first time, census data has been used to provide…

Press Release: UK’s creative industries are an export success story

New report shows creative strength despite Brexit and Covid Embargoed 00.01 Wednesday 20 March 2024,…

Introducing the Creative PEC’s Research Fellows Network 

By Professor Hasan Bakhshi, Director Creative PEC and Professor Giorgio Fazio, Director of Research …

Angel of the North - boris-yue
‘One Creative North’ plans finalised at summit ahead of Convention of the North

30 organisations meet to set out a bold new vision for the north of England’s creative industries To…

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New research calls for change in film, TV and games sectors to improve access and progression for disadvantaged young people

While the film, TV and games industries are one of the UK’s greatest success stories, new research c…

city centre shopping street scene
Press release: With coordinated action North of England based creative industries could add £10bn to the UK economy

Today, the Royal Society for Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) and the Creative Industries Polic…

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Press Release: ‘Creative Corridors’ can be the key to the UK’s creative industries’ ambitions

Today (Saturday 16 September), three major institutions announce a joint agreement to work together …

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Press release: Relationship between creative industries and gentrification overstated says new study

August 2023 – It’s a commonly held view that the arts drive gentrification. Many city leaders …

stack of old books
Press Release: Could the UK be a creative haven for writers? With support from policymakers, yes, says new report

17 August 2023 – The latest Authors’ Earnings Survey, from researchers at the CREATe Research …

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Press release: Landmark Creative Industries report says: prioritise creative education, end unequal access to the arts and focus on the regenerative power of the creative sector

27 April 2023 – Today, the Creative PEC launches a landmark report – The State…

University of Birmingham music building
Too many demands are being placed on universities to support their regional economies, without sufficient support and partnership

The creative industries have long been heralded as a UK success story. The creative economy grew at …

rural village with hills in background
How can policy makers help rural creative businesses contribute to Levelling Up?

The creative industries have the potential to play a major role in the development of rural communit…

River Thames London with Westminster Bridge and Houses of Parliament in view
PEC’s comment on the 2021 Spending Review and Autumn Budget

The UK’s creative industries – from film to fashion, and from video games to the performing ar…

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The austerity decade: local government spending on culture

Local government has been hit hard by austerity. On average, grants from central to local government…

industrial factory near canal
When policy meets place: ‘Levelling Up’ and the culture and creative industries

The UK Government’s ‘Levelling Up’ agenda aims to address regional disparities in economic prosperit…

River Tyne Newcastle
Small engines of growth: Understanding creative microclusters

Think about a creative cluster: What comes to mind? Creative clusters are the buzzing centres of the…

image of quayside scene co urtesy of Martyna Bober
A first look at connections between the presence of creative industries and the wider urban economy

Creative industries have long been a focus of urban researchers and policymakers. There is a good re…

city skyline courtesy of Zack Davidson
Looking at regional inequalities in the UK’s creative industries

The UK’s Creative Industries have been growing rapidly, both in terms of employment and economic out…

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How location impacts the creative industries

Location matters, especially in the creative industries. The area of work I am leading will be looki…

In Numbers

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London represented 31% of Creative Industries employment,
34% of businesses
Of economic output (GVA

London and the Greater South East

London and the Greater South East
62% of businesses
Of economic output (GVA)

North of England

London represented 31% of Creative Industries employment,
34% of businesses
Of economic output (GVA

of UK createch companies are based in London (Createch activity in the UK 2021).


78% of AI and Data createch businesses based in the UK are located in London.


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