Creative places: Growing the creative industries across the UK

13 July 2021

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Claudia Burger, 

Claudia Burger

Policy Insights Manager

Claudia was the Policy Insights Manager for the PE...

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Eliza Easton, 

Eliza Easton

Founder, Erskine Analysis. Previously Deputy Director at the Creative PEC

Professor Hasan Bakhshi MBE

Professor Hasan Bakhshi MBE


Hasan is Professor of Economics of the Creative In...

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The UK’s creative industries - from film to fashion, and from video games to the arts - are integral to local communities throughout the country.

This is in part because of the economic importance of the sector: one in eight UK businesses are part of the creative industries, and together they contributed almost £116 billion in GVA in 2019, growing four times faster than the rate of the UK economy as a whole (DCMS, 2021). 

Research published by the PEC has shown how crucial ‘place’ is to creative businesses and, in return, how important these organisations and their workforces can be to the neighbourhoods they are part of. 

Our research suggests that there is an important place for the creative sector in ‘levelling up’ and other local growth agendas. Not only do the creative industries have large, positive multiplier impacts, but even small creative clusters outside the UK's major cities contain within them dynamic and resilient creative businesses. We also begin to find a group of interventions, which, if included in policymakers' approach to local growth, could help to support the creative sector to flourish. 

This briefing sets out how research published as part of our week on ‘Creative Places’ can help policymakers to better understand the creative sectors across the UK and develop recommendations for policies focussed on ‘levelling-up’ or growing and supporting the creative industries across the United Kingdom’s nations and regions

Please reference this paper as:

Burger, C., Easton, E., and Bakhshi, H. (2021) Creative Places: Growing the creative industries across the UK. Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre, Available from:

Photo of the Peace Bridge, Londonderry, Northern Ireland by K. Mitch Hodge