The increasing acceptance of creative industries as a sphere of activity generates new questions regarding the ability to govern it. Various political as well private agencies are on the search for solutions. The creative economy is not only a field of economic growth but also a kind of laboratory for new practices of work and modes of productions which show us how work and production might be organised also in other sectors of our economy in the future. Therefore, the creative industries provide valuable points of reference to discuss more adequate instruments of governance regarding an economy of smaller units and production niches. Especially in the context of the current crisis with the fall of large units, many scholars and practitioners assume that small units, like they are common in creative industries, are much better adjusted to cope with market instabilities than bigger ones are. As such, creative industries might deserve a prominent position in the search toward adequate instruments for an economy of smaller units and production niches that resists the centralism of political and economic control as well as the representatives of such an approach.
The concept of governance - as we use it - refers to the process of coordinating and steering practices and activities of different public and private actors. It refers to forms of management or practices which are non-hierarchical, decentralised and organised within networks of different actors. Especially in these aspects, governance as a form of contextualised regulation differs from more traditional forms of state control which are top-down, more centralistic and managerial in character.
If creative activities become more relevant within flexible, informal networks and professional scenes, this gives rise to questions of establishing new forms of leadership in structurally unstable situations. For politicians and planers such informal networks are a kind of “terra incognita” and it seems to be difficult to provide stability and support in such instable situations. Nevertheless, the possibility of new forms of leadership is of major importance for cities and regions especially in times of crisis and shrinking budgets.
We kindly would like to invite academics, practitioners and planers as well as creative entrepreneurs to discuss the following central questions from a theoretical, conceptual as well as practical perspective:
- How do creative agents form wider collectives to better represent their interests? What new forms of self-governance do arise here?
- Into which forms of governance can existing promotional measures be classified?
- How can traditional political institutions further adapt to the demand for a more flexible, elastic governance of creative industries?
- What changes must take place at the level of political leadership so that the state can react appropriately to the young field of the creative economy?