Thursday, 16 February 2012

Creative industries versus creative activities

DCMS have a new estimate of the UK"s creative industries, full report here. Their main finding is that Creative Industries accounted for 2.89% of gross value added (GVA) in the UK in 2009.  In 2008, it was 5.6% of GVA.  Why?

This is because the method has changed (p.2 of the latest report).  First, in the old method GVA was multiplied by 1.3 due to underreporting of creative GVA.  Now it is not.  Second, adjustments to software.  Page 9 of the report says

·        Removal of the following SIC codes from Software/Electronic Publishing sector

o   62.02 Computer consultancy activities

o   62.01/2 Business and domestic software developmen

Then it adds

SIC codes 62.02 and 62.01/2 were removed as the industries these captured were more related to business software than to creative software. 

This last sentance says to me what is questionable about this method.  The list of industries included is the indsutries deemed creative

1.     Advertising
2.     Architecture
3.     Art and antiques
4.     Crafts
5.     Design
6.     Designer fashion
7.     Film and video
8.     Interactive leisure software
9.     Music
10.  The performing arts
11.  Publishing
12.  Software and computer services
13.  Television and Radio.
The problem is that this list  includes industries even though not all their activity is creative e.g. the BBC is in a creative industry, but some of its activities are not (e.g. managing the buildings). Likewise it excludes creative activity in industries who are not deemed creative industries (e.g. Rolls Royce in aerospace). Thus it is important to count creative activity regardless of the industry.  that, to me, is a better approach then creative industries. And we do just this in our work for the UK innovation index, here