More than 200 arts organisations and commercial creative companies representing the UK’s cultural sector come together next Monday to launch the CREATIVE INDUSTRIES FEDERATION.
This is the first fully independent body bringing together the public and private sector, across all parts of the country, from the largest multinational to the smallest start-up, from television to computer games, from music to design, from architecture to visual arts. This is a radical and practical project to challenge the status quo and Britain’s global performance, to increase access and diversity and - for the first time - provide a single and independent voice for Britain's fastest-growing sector.
The Federation is the brainchild of Sir John Sorrell, Chair of the University of the Arts. Its other original founders include Sir Nicholas Serota, director of Tate, Caroline Rush of the British Fashion Council, Tim Davie of the BBC, Darren Henley of Classic FM, and Amanda Nevill of the British Film Institute. Its Director is John Kampfner. The original pioneers of the organisation began the work of gathering Founder Supporters. They anticipated 100 by the end of the year; they decided to close the scheme at the end of October after receiving more than 220 financial endorsements from companies, arts organisations and others. The Founder Supporters represent a diverse range. They include global groups such as Warner Bros, Penguin Random House and Burberry; national champion arts organisations such as Tate, the British Library, Design Museum and English National Ballet, and a strong geographic mix from Aardman in Bristol to Sage Gateshead, Yorkshire Sculpture Park and Beyond Borders Scotland. Academia, skills and learning have a strong presence, from the Royal College of Music to Liverpool John Moores University, from the National Film and Television School to Nesta.
John Sorrell said: “It is time for the UK's Creative Industries to have a strong, independent membership body with a powerful voice. For too long they have found themselves under-represented in spite of their huge contribution. The Creative Industries Federation aims to put that right."
John Kampfner said: "Britain's public arts and creative companies have far more in common than they realise. Both share a need to ensure vibrant communities and successful cultural education. We will encourage them to join forces in these endeavours."
From early December, registration will begin for membership. This will be open to all who work in any of the cultural sectors – from music, to visual arts, museums and galleries, theatre, fashion, design, architecture, advertising, crafts, broadcasting, photography, publishing, computer games and other digital creative activity. Separate membership will be open for not-for-profit arts organisations, for-profit commercial companies, associate members, academia, trade associations and for individuals.
The Federation’s work will centre on advocacy through a powerful and wide-ranging advisory council and through policy groups. It will work with universities, business schools and others to produce a definitive annual report on the impact of public arts and creative industries at home and abroad. The Federation will convene events, conferences and meetings the length and breadth of the UK. In each of the nations and regions it will co-partner with organisations from the public arts, commercial creative companies and universities. The aim is better to represent cultural talent outside the talent and to find synergies that will help improve performance
In its first year, the Federation will:
• Launch a digital research portal
• Hold a pre-election policy event
• Begin a series of UK-wide roadshows
• Run seminars around the country for students and individual artists
• Publish an annual report
• Develop a digital platform for members
• Open an online research library
• Hold an annual event to chart progress