Creating a Post-Pandemic World: Why the Creative Sector is Key to COVID Recovery
Creativity is the art and practice of making new things. Destruction is often its catalyst. COVID has brought untold hardships for all of us, but for creatives it’s also brought new opportunities.
According to a report on the creative industries by The Economist, even before COVID the creative industries wielded enormous power for inclusive development.
- More than 30 million jobs globally
- 3% of global GDP, projected to grow to 10% by 2030; outperforming, in some countries. traditional sectors like agriculture and construction.
- More youth employment than any other sector, and
- Gender parity — women made up half of the total creative workforce.
The pandemic crushed much of that. Sectors that depended on gatherings and travel like the performing arts, theatre and cinema suffered. But others thrived — the ones that had already gone digital or swiftly adapted. COVID accelerated the use of digital tools for creating, distributing and consuming content, including opening doors for new consumer-to-consumer and consumer-to-business opportunities.
UK figures from the pandemic illustrate the opportunities:
- On-demand video grew by 31%
- Audiobook downloads grew by 37%
- Ebook sales grew by 24%
- 20% of advertising budgets shifted to influencers
The Economist concludes that “creative industries are an important part of rapid and inclusive post-pandemic recovery…[they] can improve, not merely reflect, the health of the economy following a downturn.” Moreover, that recovery is resilient despite slow growth in traditional sectors and even despite external volatility.
But recovery won’t come without intentional investment. Governments and funders must act to support the individuals and small businesses at the heart of the creative sector to maintain the potential for inclusive and equitable development. Supporting creators allows us to drive employment, honour our cultural distinctiveness and to level the playing field between creators and multi-national distribution platforms.
This post was created with Typeshare