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Creative hubs and urban policy: A symposium and a book launch on creative work and the city

On Tuesday 14th May Dr Cecilia Dinardi, ICCE, participated of an event organised by the Network: QMUL’s Centre for the Creative and Cultural Economy, Queen Mary University of London in partnership with the Stour Space in Hackney Wick to discuss creative hubs and urban policy:

View from Hackney Wick

Creative hubs and clusters are essential sites of cultural and creative production and consumption. These now global sites very much represent the urban regional growth promise of the creative and culture sector. In East London there are multiple manifestations of this activity – much of it under threat. This said new initiatives like the Mayor of London’s Creative Enterprise Zone have the potential to ameliorate some of the pressure already inherent in the creative and cultural sector but made even more so by certain market forces. Globally many cities face similar problems – how to best support creative and cultural production as a mechanism of regional growth and renewal.

Cecilia was part of a panel discussion on planning policy and its effect on creative hubs in the UK and Latin America, examining issues such as the formal/informal in the cultural and creative sector, the relationship between planning and development in view of the housing crisis and gentrification, trying to identify global lessons, tangible successes and discuss the most pressing challenges for future policy for the creative economy. Other panellists were Elyssa Livergant (Queen Mary University of London), Gudrun Andrews (London Legacy Development Corporation), Blossom Young (Poplar HARCA) and Charles Armstrong (The Trampery).

Cecilia participating at the panel. Photo by Jenny Mbaye

The event also included the launch of the new book Creative Hubs in Question: Place, Space and Work in the Creative Economy, published by Palgrave Macmillan, and edited by Professor Rosalind Gill, Professor Andy Pratt and Tarek Virani. The book includes a chapter by Cecilia Dinardi: ‘Grassroots Creative Hubs: Urban Regeneration, Recovered Industrial Factories and Cultural Production in Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro’.

There was also a panel discussion on Creative Enterprise Zones and Creative Hubs with Mathieu Rogers (London Borough of Hackney), Neil McDonald (Stour Space), Aida Esposito (Tottenham Creative Enterprise Zone), and another panel on creative hubs from South East Asia with the British Council: Roxana Apostol (Creative Economy Programme Director, British Council London), Simon Soon (Senior Lecturer Cultural Centre University of Malaya), Rosalina Ismail (Cultural Centre University of Malaya), and Daniel Donnelly (British Council Singapore).

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