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New Creativity, Culture & Capital Release

100 essays on impact investing in the global Creative Economy

This January sees Creativity, Culture & Capital’s Impact Investing in the Global Creative Economy series reach the milestone of 100 essays written by leaders 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.

The latest essay collection is the third in a series which launched in January 2021. This volume presents 24 essays from artists, investors, entrepreneurs, policymakers and academics, translated into English and Spanish, in a 125pp digital publication, which is free to download from the Creativity, Culture & Capital website from 20 January. 

Impact Investing in the Global Creative Economy shares examples of the ways in which the visual arts, film, music, fashion and other creative industries can tackle problems from healthcare to indigenous rights, from prisoner rehabilitation to smart cities. Pioneering research by University College London shows a powerful link between health and arts and cultural engagement, opening up novel ways of managing and treating mental and physical health conditions. A civil association in Mendoza has worked to establish an audiovisual hub in the province, bringing together production companies, video games entrepreneurs, electronic sports and augmented reality producers to work with Mendoza’s universities and public bodies. An initiative born in Mexico’s Riviera Maya almost forty years ago has become an example of environmental sustainability, ecological and heritage tourism, and good business practices. A record label born in a UK prison is providing participants with vital skills through songwriting and production. Deloitte Luxembourg describes the role cultural impact bonds can play to accelerate and sustain a dynamic creative economy in 21st century global cities.

Creativity, Culture & Capital is a project of Arts and Culture FinanceUpstart Co-Lab and Fundación Compromiso, three women-led non-profit organizations based in the UK, the US and Argentina, respectively, all working at the intersection of impact investment and the creative economy. This coalition of Arts & Culture Finance, Upstart Co-Lab and Fundación Compromiso was built on trust, respect and a shared, unswerving belief in the project’s aim of making a compelling case for impact investing in the creative economy. 

Fran Sanderson, Director of Arts & Culture Finance said:

The ongoing collaboration with our wonderful project partners and, crucially, with our amazing contributors has been the most enormous privilege. Learning about phenomenal efforts across the globe to drive positive social change through culture and creativity is both humbling and invigorating. Bringing all the initiatives together on one platform to redouble their impact is our first step towards building critical mass for this movement. Inspired by these examples, impact investors who can apply their capital with imagination have a key role to play in empowering creatives to change the world for the better.”  

Laura Callanan, Founding Partner at Upstart Co-Lab, said: 

“Our goal at Upstart Co-Lab is to connect capital to creative people who make a profit and make a difference.  We focus within the United States, but gain extraordinary inspiration — and practical know-how — from watching how colleagues around the world are harnessing the power of art, design, culture, heritage and creativity to do well and do good.”

Carolina Biquard, Directora Ejecutiva Fundación Compromiso, said:

“Fundación Compromiso has a solid profile in social innovation. We had the privilege to walk our way into the creative economy hand in hand with Upstart Co-Lab and Arts & Culture Finance by Nesta, building this publication together. CCC gave us the opportunity to explore the LATAM creative community and highlight those working for good. It allowed us to amplify the stories of some of the most amazing and interesting players in our creative ecosystem and meet and greet them in one global publication.”

The essay collection is available to download now.  

For further information, to request interviews with contributors or extracts of essays for publication, please contact Tessa Norton, Marketing Manager, Arts & Culture Finance, Nesta at [email protected].

About the Creative Economy and Impact Investing

The creative economy is typically defined based on a relevant set of art, culture, design and innovation industries, and their economic contribution within a geographic region. A unique set of industries defines each local creative economy, reflecting the culture, traditions and heritage of that place. 

Impact investing is investing with the intention to generate positive, measurable social and environmental impact alongside a financial return. It is an investment approach, applicable to all asset classes, that counters the traditional separation of environmental, social and governance risk factors from investment decisions that are focused on financial returns alone. Related concepts include sustainable investing, ESG (investing in companies operating with best environmental, social and governance practices) and SRI (socially responsible investing, or sustainable, responsible and impact investing).

Creativity, Culture & Capital

Creativity, Culture & Capital brings together international stakeholders who believe that art, design, culture, heritage and creativity can benefit people, communities, 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.

Launched at the start of 2021, the United Nations International Year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development, Creativity, Culture & Capital recognises the creative sector as a key driver of inclusive and sustainable growth as the world considers recovery 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 partners

Arts & Culture Finance supports arts and cultural organisations that benefit the lives of individuals, communities and society through their work, using our investments to help organisations become more sustainable and resilient. They manage several social impact investment funds aimed at organisations in the arts and cultural sector on behalf of partner investors.

Nesta is an innovation foundation. For Nesta, innovation means turning bold ideas into reality and changing lives for the better. They use their expertise, skills and funding in areas where there are big challenges facing society. Nesta is based in the UK and supported by a financial endowment. They work with partners around the globe to bring bold ideas to life to change the world for good.

Upstart Co-Lab connects capital to creative people who make a profit and make a difference. Since 2016, Upstart Co-Lab has explored how the $920 billion US creative economy can become more inclusive, equitable and sustainable. Upstart advises families, foundations and endowed cultural institutions on impact investment opportunities that deliver market-rate returns and deep impact. Based in New York City, 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. Fundación Compromiso’s goal is to also bring impact investors to this pool, through its program Potrero Digital.

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