Key points form sessions - Creative industries: Growth engine for the future?

Creative design thinking

Five key points:

  1. Design is a multiplier—it is key in value creation—but works at its absolute best in synergy with diverse disciplines and expertise. Design thinking or metadesign (see e.g. methods function as a universal conductor and translator in value creation. This, in effect, means that though design (thinking) is grounded in the Arts, it should and can be applied at all levels and in all sectors.
  2. Because it is impossible to multiply zero—financial support at early stages of innovation and invention is fundamental, but it is important to differentiate between e.g. start-ups and experimental projects, and longer term initiatives intent on community-building, job creation, a viable regional economy, and an environment suitable for a life of quality. The latter form is of key importance on the way to sustainable futures and the well-being of our planet. For investors understanding and being able to value cultural capital and the surrounding sharing economy unlocks smart investment in the creative industries.
  3. Creative people, content creators in any discipline—including the arts—want autonomy and equal opportunity; they function best and are at their most creative in a agile non-hierarchical flat and/or democratic cooperation—and function worst in a linear predetermined value-chain—but are more than willing and able to take full responsibility for their actions and the effect of their outcomes. Part of taking responsibility is sharing benefits, in every sense, which is a driving force in the creative industries, especially on the grassroots level, and case studies show that the sharing economy within the creative industries is a future model worth scaling up from and supporting on a regulatory and governmental level.
  4. The role of education for the creative industries: academic institutions serve as providers of research and knowledge production for the future and the turnout of next generation employees, but also as a critical sounding board for future development. A diversity of diversities is called for, and considered crucial. Access to, and for, people is the very fabric of a diverse dynamic creative industry, and is that which creates markets, moves and expands them. An inclusive attitude is the way to teach and sustain resilience, they key ingredient for 21st century creatives, without which the continued spread of prosperity is impossible.
  5. The next Climate Conference is in Paris a month from now. It is a point of no return—the point at which people will either be forced into a mode of permanent reaction and crisis management—or it can be the moment agents of change can really start to create the future we all want to share.

Moderator: Dóra Ísleifsdóttir


Creating the future

Can Europe surpass US as center of digital innovation and entrepreneurship?

Access to:

1) Talent

  • Not just coding, also entrepreneurial skills
  • Highlight Role Models
  • 45% of Europeans have never considered being an entrepreneur
  • Pay attention to gender dynamics

2) Finance

  • Government money critical in early stages
  • Provide easy access for US Capital
  • Fund female founders too

3) Infrastructure/Technology/Markets

  • Bandwith
  • IP/Single Patents
  • One Market
  • Clusters

Secret weapon for scale-up:
4) Collaboration (partnership) model.

  • Example: A Dane, a Swede and 4 Estonians created Skype and sold for 8.5 billion – now onto new scalable ventures
  • #Estonianmafia a great example of effective collaboration

Can we make virtual worlds as meaningful as the real world?

1) There is no Planet B

  • Can the virtual world solve our sustainability issues?
  • ur Refugee Crisis?
  • Will it be a lonely planet or can we satisfy every emotional need?

2) Can we create Gender Balance and Democratic Participation?

  • In Eve Online 95% of players are males, but the characters they create in the virtual world are 50/50 male/female
  • More people vote in the game than in reality

3) Will we see a world of no government, no countries and be able to solve our refugee/migration crisis?

  • The virtual world can at least offer complimentary solutions and synergies
  • Online education, language and skills training

Conclusion: We need transformative changes to solve our many pressing challenges. Tapping into all our resources in the creative and cultural sectors is vital to creating a sustainable future.

Moderator: Halla Tómasdóttir


Creative learning

Key points form the session.

New ways to learn

  • Examples from music, business, quiz games, art and Legos
  • Common theme: Learn by doing and learn from mistakes
  • Key: Encourage play and participation
  • Benefits are clear

Challenges in adoption

  • How to integrate with fundamental skills such as math and reading
  • How to also learn from existing knowledge (other’s mistakes)
  • How to combine “play” with necessary “perseverance”
  • How to infuse new approaches into current education systems

Solution paths for adoption

  • Build on existing examples from disciplines and individual schools, so as to create a balance between skill learning and creativity
  • Ensure that government enables and supports adoption, but does not drive the process top-down
  • Allow experiments with approaches in such a way that lessons are learned about what works and what does not
  • Increase the flexibility and options available for students and teachers
  • Support and train teachers in new methods and techniques

Bottom line

  • Know-how, innovation and creativity are the keys to the competitiveness of nations
  • Must thus balance skills and creativity in education
  • Aim for the skills and discipline of nations like Korea and Singapore, combined with the open culture and creativity of Northern Europe

Moderator: Ari Kristinn Jónsson


Creative solutions

Creative industries and solutions create jobs, grow our economies and help solve the complicated problems we face now and in the future.

Lessons learned:

I. Eliminate SILOS in our governments.

Work together across ministries and with agencies, municipalities and others. Use a more holistic approach – Whole-of-Government.

II. Define our problems better – there is room for integration.

Take time with various creative thinkers to define problems and come up with better questions. We need to see the potential for integrated approaches to problems; social, economic, environmental, cultural, etc.

III. Use PPP in a more creative manner.

Nurture the cooperation of public and private sectors in order to solve complicated problems – for better and more creative solutions.

IV. Enable creative solutions by designing platforms.

Design platforms and get various creative people together with more traditional thinkers to find good solutions to complicated problems.

V. Create systems to support creative industries & solutions.

Use a systemic approach and build systems to nurture creative industries, creative thinking and problem solving in our countries. There are many potential ways, including:

Educate on fundamental skills and creativity, create awareness of the importance of creative industries and solutions, design policies, financial structures and legal structures, have creative platforms, support networking, entrepreneurism and more.

We need to use our creative minds; call in creative people with various backgrounds and allow them to participate in solving complicated problems.

Speakers in the session on Creative Solutions:

Silvija Nora Kalnins (LV): Biannually scientists, educators and artists create a public forum in Latvia on sustainability. It is a participative method to create awareness and facilitate behaviors emphasizing sustainability in everyday living.

Sheela M. Sögaard (DK): Her company, BIG, integrates many perspectives in their architectural design, with focus on social integration. Various creative minds get together to solve problems in a novel and integrated manner. Conclusion: We need the right combination of thinkers to create better solutions to complicated problems.

Ragnar Siil (EE): Nurturing creative solutions calls for a systemic approach in our countries. How do we build enablers for creative problem solving and solutions? We need sustainable platforms and systems for strong creative industries and solutions.

Outi Luukko (FI): Designs PR material and work-clothing with sustainability as the core value. Her B2B company facilitates the awareness of sustainability in businesses.

Ingi Rafn Sigurðsson (IS): Crowd-funding; people care, they want to contribute and participate, we need to rethink our financial models to support creative industries.

Moderator: Guðfinna S. Bjarnadóttir