Creativity, Culture & Capital

Arts and Culture Finance, Upstart Co-Lab and Fundación Compromiso are launching Creativity, Culture & Capital, an international collaboration that brings together stakeholders from across the globe who believe that art, design, culture, heritage and creativity can benefit individuals, communities, society and the planet – and that impact capital will be a vital tool to support the positive growth and development of the global creative economy. As a living resource and community platform, Creativity, Culture & Capital illustrates that the creative sector already delivers social impact and proves that impact investment supports a more just and sustainable global creative economy. 

Creativity, Culture & Capital recognises the creative sector as a key driver of inclusive and sustainable growth as the world considers how to recover from the devastating effects of COVID-19. Creativity, Culture & Capital highlights the need and opportunity for impact investment to support renewed substantial sector growth, alongside continued government funding, philanthropic support and profit-maximising investment at a moment when arts organisations and the creative industries are considering how to ‘build back better’ following a global pandemic which triggered severe economic consequences for all communities.

The project launches today with a series of essays published in English and Spanish, that showcase the employment power of the artisan craft sector, the role of culture in placemaking, opportunities for technology to democratise access to great art, as well as how impact funds are already investing in the creative industries globally. 

The team are aiming to publish 100 essays in total by the end of 2021, creating a rich resource of geographies, sectors and experiences. A call for submissions and detailed guidance will be launched in March 2021. In particular we are seeking perspectives from Africa, Asia and the Middle East; examples from cultural heritage, fashion, design, food and media; and voices of leaders from marginalised communities and the next generation.

To be notified when the submission process is open, please join the CCC mailing list.

Why are we doing this?

2021 is the United Nations International Year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development. To acknowledge the importance of the creative sector, creativity and culture have been added to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals alongside economics and technology as driving the path forward for global development. 

Before the pandemic, the creative industries accounted for 3 per cent of global GDP and was one of the most rapidly growing sectors of the world economy, transformative in terms of income generation, job creation and export earnings. However, opportunities were often unevenly distributed and the impact of COVID-19 on the sector has been devastating, with thousands of job losses, organisation closures and links between practitioners and their communities brought to a halt. It’s essential that the recovery from COVID-19 doesn’t exacerbate existing structural inequalities and that opportunities are created for everyone to contribute to and reap the benefits of this truly innovative sector.

Creativity, Culture & Capital aims to inspire global policymakers, fund managers, investors and philanthropic funders in impact investing to prioritise the creative economy, supporting the sector to be more inclusive and sustainable. This is also an opportunity for creative organisations, artists, makers and designers to consider attracting alternative financial resources to create meaningful change through creativity, heritage and culture.

Going forward, Creativity, Culture & Capital will demonstrate the potential benefits of a global impact investment fund for the inclusive creative economy, and serve as a crucible for this effort.

About the partners:

Upstart Co-Lab connects impact investing to the creative economy. Since 2016, Upstart Co-Lab has been exploring how the $878 billion creative economy in the US can become more inclusive, equitable and sustainable. By introducing a Creativity Lens, Upstart Co-Lab helps impact investors who understand the power of art, design, culture, heritage, and creativity see the opportunities that align with their values. Upstart Co-Lab is a project of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors.

Fundación Compromiso has developed and spread since 1994 a new model of supporting and investing effectively in social, environmental and cultural issues throughout LATAM civil society organisations, private enterprises and public institutions. FC is guiding impact investors in the region to understand their opportunities and bringing all kinds of partners from around the world, from grassroots organisations to innovative enterprises, to make social change happen.