– ECBN presents research on Spillover-Effects at the European Culture Forum –

Art and Biotech, Design and Mobility, Media Art and Migration – these seemingly unrelated mixtures of professions and branches were presented at the European Culture Forum 2016 on April 19, titled „Arts meets business and technology“.

These inter-connections might seem unexpected and surprising, but they are examples of artistic and – at the same time vice versa – industrial strategies for innovation, growth and jobs in the developing knowledge based society, so-called spillover effects or – in relation to sectors – cross over effects. The innovative effects of the cultural and creative sectors have continuously been on the European Commissions agenda since 2012 – reflecting the growing success of spillover effects and the growing attention in business as well as the arts, culture and creative industries. Also the research community has taken on the topic: since 2014 the European Research Partners on Cultural Creative Spillover is commissioning new research on spillover effects and has developed to become a continuous driver for a new European research agenda for culture.

ECBN was honoured to present the findings of the European Research Partners, which you can read more about here, including the Arts Council England, Arts Council of Ireland, Creative England, European Centre for Creative Economy and European Cultural Foundation. Bernd Fesel, ECBN managing director, framed the session’s best practice presentations theoretically – pointing out the first empirically based definition, the gaps in evaluation methods at hand and the need for the European Commission to invest in new research.


While we – as the believers in culture – are all convinced of the positive spillover effects of arts, culture and creative industries, we must face the fact that no sufficient proof of causality has yet been given, that prove investments in the arts and culture lead to innovation and growth. Only with the state of the art evaluation, politicians can be convinced of state of the art investments in the arts, culture and creative industries. ECBN will thus continue to support research to secure investments and innovations from cultural and creative sectors.Bernd Fesel

European Culture Forum 2016

Following this introduction almost 160 participants in the session „Arts meets business and technology“ listened to Simona Maschi, Head of Programme Copenhagen Institute for Interactive Design, present Toyota Window to the World“ 

Window to the World (CIID/Toyota) from CIID

Toyota Window re-defines the relationship between passengers in a vehicle and the world around it by transforming the vehicles windows into an interactive interface. Using augmented reality, what used to be a pane of glass, begins to provide passengers with information about landmarks and other objects as they go past. The window can also be used as a canvas for drawings, which then interacts with the passing environment.“ (http://ciid.dk/)

Lucas Evers, Head of the Waag Society´s Wetlab presented TRUST ME, I’m an ARTIST” 

Trust me, I'm an Artist, book cover

This projects investigates how artists and cultural institutions can best engage with biotechnology and biomedicine in order to drive innovation in artistic production, ways of presenting artworks, and developing new audiences in Europe.“ (https://waag.org/en)

Eric Joris, Artistic Director, Crew on lineintroduced  DREAMSPACE

DREAMSPACE researches and develops tools that enable creative professionals to work collaboratively and combine live performances, video and computer-generated imagery in real-time.“ One dreamspace objective is „developing „methods of combining captured performances, video, CGI, lighting designs and Visual Effects and viewing them with real-time render by algorithms for real-time ray tracing, lighting simulation and depth compositing.“ (http://www.dreamspaceproject.eu/)

Finally Norma Deseke from BeAnotherLab explained “The MACHINE to BE ANOTHER

The Machine to be Another

Open Source Art investigation on the relation of Identity and Empathy that has been developed on a basis of low budget experiments of Embodiment and Virtual Body Extension. Designed as an interactive performance installation, the ‘Machine’ offers users the possibility of interacting with a piece of another person’s life story by seeing themselves in the body of this person and listening to his/her thoughts inside their mind.“ 

Dorota Nigge

Dorota Nigge, Policy Officer, Directorate-General for Education and Culture

Unit D.1 – Cultural Diversity and Innovation, opened and moderated the session reflecting upon the following questions:

• What is, in your opinion,  the added value of cooperating across-sectors?

• What are the concrete benefits for you of working on the borderline between sectors? What are the major problems?

• What are the lessons learned from your project?

The European research partnership for cultural creative spillovers is an open science project – you can find more information on all research and partners here.