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World Cities Culture Report 2015 Now Available
Major new international report highlights opportunities and challenges for the future
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, today (18th November 2015) called on cities around the world to work together to support and nurture culture and creativity, which he believes are critical to their success. The Mayor’s comments coincide with the publication of The World Cities Culture Report 2015, the biggest international survey of opinion leaders ever undertaken about the value of culture and cities.
The report comes as cultural leaders and senior officials from 31 leading cities met in London for the fourth World Cities Culture Summit, three days of high level talks aimed at sharing experience and expertise, formulating long-term policies to protect culture, creativity and innovation and planning for future challenges.
The World Cities Culture Report, which is supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies, draws on a wealth of data to show the breadth of cultural activity in almost thirty leading cities, from how many museums, cinema screens, restaurants and live music venues they have, to how many international tourists they attract and how many people are employed in the creative industries.
Produced by the World Cities Culture Forum, 150 artists, business leaders, entrepreneurs and politicians and opinion formers were asked for their views on the challenges and opportunities facing their cities and how culture can address them. The report reveals that the cultural and creative sectors are increasingly recognised as critical to the success of leading cities around the world, with many contributors talking about the role that culture has in creating shared spaces and bringing people together.
There is however concerns that cities are becoming too unaffordable for creative talent to survive and what practical steps should be taken to ensure arts and culture are accessible to the widest number of people and reflect the increasingly diverse populations now living in urban centres.
London has weathered the financial crisis remarkably well and its reputation as a centre for finance, trade and culture has never been higher. Four out of five people say that culture is the main reason that they come to London, with cultural tourists spending £7.3 billion in 2013 (GLA 2015), but there are fears its economic success is making the city increasingly unaffordable for artists and other practitioners. A number of other cities, including Hong Kong, New York and San Francisco, have similar concerns. Like London, many cities are now developing policies aimed at embedding culture in planning, such as the protection of cultural venues and the creation of creative workspaces alongside future development.
Paul Owens, Managing Director of BOP Consulting, the specialist firm which researched and wrote the report said: ‘The World Cities Culture Report 2015 shows that all leading cities around the world are now taking culture seriously as an important item on the urban growth agenda. The report is designed as a useful tool for developing more wide-reaching policies on culture and sustainable growth.’
Click here to download and read the full report.
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