Harnessing Liverpool’s Creative Power

The Creativity and Innovation Commission set up by Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson meets for the first time today (Thursday, October 2) to review how the city can maximise its potential.

The independent commission led by Mersey TV founder, Professor Phil Redmond, includes a range of city, regional, national and internationally recognised experts from the world of culture, media, sport and business.

They will start hearing evidence from Liverpool’s diverse and eclectic creative sector, which will shape their recommendations for future direction.

According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), the creative sector employs almost 12,000 people across the City Region in roles ranging from the media, publishing and ICT through to architecture, design and the performing arts.

The Commission will look at how creativity can be stimulated, nurtured and fostered within schools and communities, promote innovation to grow more businesses; consider ways in which different sectors can work together: and promote creative collaboration.

Mayor Anderson said: “Liverpool is one of the great cities of creativity, innovation and entrepreneurialism and encouraging innovation and building enterprise is the most effective way to realise individual promise and spur the economy.

“Being creative and innovative has always been the instinctive response in Liverpool to harder times and in this current climate we must devise ways to help liberate the potential that exists in Liverpool and embed those behaviours that will help sustain the city and attract more investment and business.

“The quality and expertise of the commissioners is very impressive and will be ably led by Phil Redmond. They are fully independent and I have asked them to leave no stone unturned, to engage and listen and recommend how as a city we can harness our creative power and move to the next level and then act on it.”

The other members of the Commission are:

• Dr Denise Barrett Baxendale MBE, Chief Executive, Everton in the Community
• Stuart Cosgrove, Director of Creative Diversity, Channel 4
• Dr David Fleming OBE, Director of National Museums Liverpool
• Alastair Machray, Editor-in-Chief, Trinity Mirror Merseyside, Cheshire, North Wales
• Claire McColgan MBE, Director of Culture Liverpool
• Aideen McGinley OBE, BBC Trust member
• Sir Ken Robinson, International expert on creativity and innovation
• Peter Salmon, Director England, BBC

The Commission will receive evidence from experts and from a cross section of stakeholders including young people, businesses, universities, city leaders, communities and voluntary sectors.

The Commission will also consider the latest research and available data, examples of best practice locally, nationally and internationally.

Professor Redmond said: “We have a wide ranging brief with the goal of finding the best ways to maintain and grow Liverpool’s reputation as an international capital for creativity, culture and commerce.

“We will be considering how innovation and business or entrepreneurial acumen can be engendered, stimulated and supported to help grow more business opportunities across sectors of the economy and across public, private and third sector activity

“We will also investigate ways through which education, heritage, the arts, creative industries and technology sectors can work collaboratively to stimulate creative endeavour that will in turn cascade to other economic areas such as tourism, social inclusion and social innovation.”

A final report with recommendations will be submitted to the Mayor in late spring 2015.