As Arts funding in Australia continues to shrink so does the hope that the nation will promote creative thinkers who will shape our future and lead us to developing a better one with improved outcomes. Funding creative thinking may seem extravagant and financially risky but the evidence proves there are many prepared to invest in risk as essential to guaranteeing security. We must recognise that innovation comes through investment in experimentation. Without this behind our business thinking do we run the risk of loosing our creative thinkers? How will we develop and nurture creative thinkers in the current climate? Do we risk being left behind other countries?
NAVA only today published “Australia’s challenge is to integrate cultural production into the economic landscape. The creative industries are enablers of creative networks and spaces and of new business models. They contribute 2.8% of gross GDP (more than agriculture; communications; and electricity, gas and water supply). The visual arts, design and architecture makes up over 11% of the creative industries and have been growing in terms of employment opportunity. (See the Centre for International Economics, Creative Industries Economic Analysis June 2009). ”
In a recent article in D*Hub ‘Creative Life Support: why supporting Australian design matters‘, Lisa Cahill, Executive Director of the Australian Design Alliance (AdA), points to the contribution of just a few of the outstanding designers working in areas that impact our daily lives. There are many more struggling to get their ideas off the ground and seeking support and recognition to launch their ideas or product.
Tomorrow (18 September), the Global Design Forum as part of London Design Festival 2012 will address the following questions:
- Are the creative industries inherently risky or the key to our future growth?
- How can designers draw our path out of recession?
- How is the business of design changing around the world?
- Shouldn’t design be rooted at the centre of problem-solving activities?
- Where does the digital revolution leave your business?
- What are the real innovations shaping the design industry?
- How do you convince people to have what they don’t yet know they want?
- How can design be best used to secure a competitive advantage?
- Why is it important to play and dream?
All these questions have become extremely critical in our uncertain times. Industries and corporations are aware of the need to develop new approaches as part of their survival strategy, whether it be work practices, products or services. They are also aware of an ever motionless world that is moving faster than ever before. Increasingly we are aware of the groundswell urging towards a more sustainable and responsible approach, to have more input, ownership and a growing sense of dissatisfaction in available options. Rather than waste time and energy on protectionism we should really look at what we are doing and how we are doing it and ask ourselves what it is that we have not tried before. Yes this is frightening, it may not work and it may cost money but we have to be prepared to make some mistakes before something will work. And who will help bring us there? Well take a guess.