SPIEF Participants Discuss Role of Creative Industries in Socioeconomic Development of the North
Participants in the session ‘The Creative Economy: A New Vector in the Development of the North’ at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum discussed the influence of creative industries on the socioeconomic development of the North as well as the conditions and infrastructure that are needed for incremental changes in creative professions in the northern territories. The event is part of the ‘Creative Industries of the North’ programme and the schedule of events of Russia’s chairmanship in the Arctic Council in 2021–2023, which are being organized by the Roscongress Foundation
“The Russian Federation is currently chairing the Arctic Council. As part of this work, our country is paying attention to the human dimension, the inhabitants of the Arctic, and indigenous peoples, among other priorities. The problems associated with the socioeconomic block can be resolved to a large extent, in part through the development of creative industries,” said Nikolay Korchunov, Ambassador-at-Large of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Chairman of the Arctic Senior Officials.
“During the transition to the fourth industrial revolution, computers cannot replace a creative approach to problem-solving,” he noted. In addition, creative industries help to support the population and develop sustainable solutions. The multiplier effect is another issue: creative industries help to further enhance the quality of life of indigenous peoples and other peoples of the Arctic as well as tourism and the local economy. He pointed out that Russia has initiated a number of projects within the framework of the Arctic Council, including the digitalization of the cultural and linguistic heritage of indigenous peoples, the development of creative industries in the Arctic region, as well as draft proposals on the traditional medicine of indigenous peoples.
The creative industry market was the subject of research in the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous District last year. Natalya Komarova, the governor of the district, noted that creative industry companies make up 14% of small and medium-sized businesses in the region. The most popular activities among such companies are the creation and promotion of trademarks, marketing, information, communication, and digital technologies. Creative industries have the key opportunities needed for development in the northern territories, she said. One factor is the young population, a third of which has a high level of interest in creativity.
“Sustainable investment opportunities are another important circumstance that is common to all the northern territories: financially intensive enterprises that are capable of making domestic investments operate within the economy of our region,” Komarova said. “Other factors include a focus on exports, well-developed infrastructure, education, and healthcare,” she said.
The creative economy could become a foundation for the economic growth of communities of indigenous peoples of the Arctic, said Mikhail Pogodaev, Deputy Minister for Arctic Development and Northern Affairs of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) and Special Representative of Russia’s Chairmanship in the Arctic Council on Indigenous Peoples Issues and Regional Cooperation.
“We plan to study the creative potential of indigenous peoples in different regions as part of the Creative Arctic project. We want to combine an educational platform to enable indigenous young people to study creative industries and implement their projects,” Pogodaev said.
The session ‘The Creative Economy: A New Vector in the Development of the North’ was also attended by Timofey Moldanov, Master of Folklore, Candidate of Historical Sciences, and Ethnographer; Rustam Romanenkov, Deputy General Director and State Secretary of the Centre for Arctic Initiatives; and Afanasiy Savvin, General Director of the Sakha Republic Development Corporation.
Russia will continue to chair the Arctic Council in 2021–2023 and one of the cross-cutting themes of its chairmanship is to provide responsible governance for the sustainable development of the Arctic. Priorities include improving the quality of human capital with special attention paid to work to improve the well-being and living standards of the Arctic population, including indigenous peoples, the creation of a modern urban environment, the provision of quality education, improvements to the healthcare system, and the preservation of the cultural and linguistic traditions of the Arctic inhabitants.
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