3. Local Benefits
Suggest ways in which a local enterprise may benefit from implementing national, European and international creative industry policy
Financing, Confidence Building, and Planning
The London Design Festival and the London Development Agency have grown from the idea stage to full maturity at relatively the same speed and time. One is a public institution and the other is a private enterprise. The private enterprise must seek financial independence at one stage or another during its existence. The goal of local creative industry policy is to support the growth of local private enterprises but not be the only funding source. In order to predict and plan growth a local enterprise must be able to rely on continual support over a given number of years. If funding is allocated on a yearly basis then a relationship of dependence settles in allowing for very little planning on the part of the private enterprise.
For the first couple years the relationship between the London Design Festival and London Development Agency was one of dependence. The Festival, on an annual yearly funding programme, was only able to plan on a yearly cycle. Since there was no indication of future funding, planning was difficult to carry out beyond the next festival. With the signing of a three year funding agreement in place the Festival can now undertake important financial independence planning.
Without a long term funding agreement in place, long term planning can not happen. The new funding arrangement has allowed the Festival to undertake important strategic planning work. It is through planning that policy implementation at different levels will happen. This is not to say that yearly funding is a negative thing. It is possible that yearly funding through the first two or three years is important to build relationships of trust and confidence within the creative sector. It is also important for each party to assess the strengths and weaknesses of evolving together. However, after an initial successful trial period it’s logical for a successful relationship to evolve and solidify.
The findings concerning financing from the case study was that local creative industry policy provided financial support on a yearly basis during a confidence building and testing phase for two to three years. This was then followed by a longer term commitment of three or more years that allowed for more detailed planning for growth and financial independence on the part of a creative enterprise. The advantages of planning also point to greater possibilities of accessing European and private funding that operates on longer term planning cycles.