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Creative Cities is an international project designed and managed by the British Council. It shares experience across Europe on the ways creativity, entrepreneurship and innovation can help to improve people’s lives - making cities better places to live, work and play.
About Creative Cities
With over 70% of Europe’s population now living in urban areas, cities have a vital role in delivering economic and social well-being for Europe. A new generation of urban influencers and innovators is emerging which recognises that culture and creativity is central to addressing the challenges cities face. Creative Cities supports this new generation, providing opportunities to develop and share ideas which make Europe’s cities better places to live, work and play.
British Council proposal
The British Council developed the Creative Cities project in 2007, in partnership with a range of cities and organisations active in developing innovative approaches to city policy. Individuals taking part in project events develop new skills and build new contacts across Europe. Cities which join the project network have an opportunity to establish competitive advantage for themselves and attract creative talent, and in so doing set the foundations for future economic growth. The Creative Cities project is running in the UK, Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia, Slovenia, Ukraine, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Russia.
Creative Cities explores new ways to improve quality of life in cities by involving young professionals from various backgrounds. During the course of the project these young people will acquire knowledge, networks, skills and tools to give them more influence on decisions made about the urban environment they live in. This will enable them to make a difference on a range of issues such as: public spaces, arts and social activities, and cultural policy. The three core project strands are: Future City Game, Urban Ideas Bakery and Urban Forum. In addition to the three strands, the project provides platforms to enable young social innovators in Europe to keep in touch with the project and each other: an interactive website, a Facebook group, Twitter and an e-mail newsletter.
Methods and Tools
Future City Game
- Generates new ideas on how to improve the quality of life either in a specific area within a city, the city as a whole, or in response to the common challenges facing cities around the world.
- A one-day or two-day event involving city inhabitants from diverse backgrounds, representing different disciplines and led by a trained games-master.
- Uses a team based process, with a unique and innovative methodology developed by the British Council in partnership with CLES – Centre for Local Economic Strategies and Urbis – Manchester’s Centre of Urban Life.
Urban Ideas Bakery
- Builds skills and shares experience on how cities ‘bake ideas’ – that is turn them into practical solutions.
- A problem-solving and planning process that puts people at the centre of social innovation; it includes a two-day international event engaging social innovators and experts from across Europe and local community representatives.
- Consists of international conferences and workshops providing a forum for ongoing debate on the role that creativity, entrepreneurship and innovation play in urban development.
- Creative events which demonstrate new ways cities can inspire creativity in the community.
Publication Breakthrough Cities Report
- Kreativni mesta
- Creative Planning
- Creative Cities article in Polytika
- Article about Future City Game
- Gdansk European Capital of Culture article
- Article about public participation in Warsaw Gazette