Florida (2002) outlines the idea of a new age, the age of creativity. Florida’s idea is that creativity is the new economic wave or driving force in generating and stimulating economic growth, the idea of a ‘creative class’ is a necessity for cities to rethink policies to cater to the new socioeconomic class. The rise of the creative class has been influential within the US, cities compete to attract the creative class in establishing a city’s cool factor or place to be, with an emerging notion of economic growth is fundamentally informed by human creativity and human capital (Florida 2002). Florida outlines,
“While it certainly remains important to have a solid business climate, having an effective people climate is even more essential.” (Florida 2002)
This challenge old paradigms of business first but establishes the idea of investing in human capital. Although the works primarily focus on large US cities, these characteristics are translatable in other fabrics of society and culture, this is visible in the newly unveiled Cornwall’s Creative Manifesto (Cornwall Council 2020). Taking Florida’s (2004) concept of the “3T’s of economic development: Technology, Talent and Tolerance” is evident in the manifesto’s four main ambitions that encapsulates the three T’s (Florida 2002).
Ambition 1 – Establishing a powerful sense of cultural identity. (Exciting, interesting place to be, idea in investing in social and cultural capital.)
Ambition 2 – Serves to recognize areas for technological development and networking of communities, creatives, and infrastructures. (Technology)
Ambition 3 – Highlights the idea of talent through education and inspiring service class workers the possibility to be a part of the creative class (Florida 2002, 2004). (Talent)
Ambition 4 – Highlights the counties push in developing a sense of social cohesion as historical Cornwall is a least racially diverse place with conservation political views. (Tolerance)
Although it would seem the manifesto takes strides towards a combination of the 3T’s in Florida’s theory should attract but also retain the creative class. However, where Florida provides an optimistic outlook, ambition 1 embodies what Peck outlines “the solution seems to be that the working and service classes need to ﬁnd a way to pull themselves up by their creative bootstraps.”. Peck questions the plausibility of engaging the remaining workforce into the creative fold, this highlights some vulnerability in Florida’s theory whereby who would still undertake the limited creative, low income, “deadening” jobs (Peck 2005).
In comparison to the games industry, McRobbie (2016) and Ross (2004) exemplifies a similar experience to working in the games industry, outlining capitalist and neoliberal ideals to drive competition in the labour market (Peuter 2011 Ross 2004). Companies have adapted to secure the best talent, through the means of a heavily individualistic workforce coincides with Reynolds (2020) attributes defined in the lecture (Florida 2002). The game industry features precarity and non-standardized work (Peuter 2011), crunch periods and elements of gig economy often require creatives in this field to be self-motivated and exabit a labour of love, this enables companies to exploit creativity for profit.
Reynolds, Dr K. 2020.[ video,]England. Week 6 – Digital Capitalism and Creative Labour.
Florida, R. 2002. ‘The Rise of the Creative Class’, The Washington Monthly (May 2002)
Florida, R. 2004 ‘Cities and the Creative Class’, Carnegie Mellon University. [online]. Available at: https://creativeclass.com/rfcgdb/articles/4%20Cities%20and%20the%20Creative%20Class.pdf
Cornwall Council. (2021-2025). 2020. Cornwall Creative Manifesto: The Future of the UK’s Leading Rural Economy. Cornwall. Available at: https://www.cornwall.gov.uk/leisure-and-culture/culture-and-creative-economy/creative-manifesto-2021-2025/
Peck, J. 2005. Struggling with the Creative Class, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research. Vol 29 (4), p.g 740-770.
McRobbie, A. (2016) Be Creative: Making a Living in the New Culture Industries. Cambridge; Polity Press pg. 33-59
Ross, A. (2004) No-collar: The Humane Workplace and Its Hidden Costs. Philadelphia; Temple University Press
Greig de Peuter, ‘Creative Economy and Labour Precarity: A Contested Convergence’, Journal of Communication Inquiry, Vol. 35, No. 4 (2011).