When heading out-of-town for work or play and deciding on how to spend your time, do you seek out unique dining spots, museums, or parks? Do you look up special events or live shows to attend? Whether I’m “painting the town red” or curating a “locals’ experience”, I’ve often recognized my contribution to a location’s tourism industry. More recently, however, thanks to the book “Creative Economy Entrepreneurs” by Alice Loy and Tom Aageson, I’ve come to better acknowledge my part in sustaining creative sector jobs. Part entrepreneurial guidebook, part economic analysis, and part inspiration catalyst, “Creative Economy Entrepreneurs” packs it all in with colorful metaphors and vibrant storytelling that bring fuzzier concepts to life. Data-packed vignettes of forward-thinking creative ventures across the spectrum – from the well-established Cirque du Soleil to industry start-ups – shape a compelling business case for cultivating a healthy creative economy and supporting its entrepreneurs. It also digs into key themes relevant to our shared ownership workshop such as: the economic value of interconnected diversity (greater recession resistance), individual courageous vision inspires change (“with a firm grasp of one’s culture, traditions, place, and people, it is easier to embrace and integrate new ideas, wedding the deeply known with the unknown to create something inventive that delivers values in the market”), and investing in economic ecosystems for collective prosperity, sustainability, and community resilience.
I offer a preview to whet the appetite. Pulled from chapter 1, “Creative Economy Entrepreneurs” identifies “seven key economic challenges that, if solved, can help communities thrive”:
1) Creative entrepreneurs create high-quality, innovative, economic base jobs.
2) Creative entrepreneurs strengthen and diversify local economies.
3) Creative entrepreneurs attract and democratize private investment.
4) Creative entrepreneurs unleash diverse talent.
5) Creative entrepreneurs globalize local economies.
6) Creative entrepreneurs empower and engage youth.
7) Creative entrepreneurs bolster and develop unique regional identities.
Learn ways to see factors of regional identity as economic assets. I recommend this work to get juice from both sides of the brain flowing!