What a year! Even today we are unable to comprehend fully what the pandemic 2020 left us with: The pandemic hits everyone, either on a personal, economic or global level, we are all affected The fact we know so far is a drop in sales for the creative industries by a third or even 50% in some sectors. The event industry was the first to close and the last to reopen, and a steep personal learning curve for the means of digital communication. These are only few of the things that no one had foreseen at the beginning of 2020.

But creatives all over the world have used their innovation potential and found many ways to combat or at least weaken the effects of the pandemic. – Together in Distance – is not just a hollow phrase but was made tangible through creative solutions for many people. Free means of crisis communication, posters or graffiti in lock down to cheer people up, but also innovative new interactive formats have been developed during the pandemic with the goal to bring us closer together in these difficult times. It was during this strangest of times that the ECBN organised its 10th European Creative Industries Summit, the EICS2020.

This annaul #ECIS was orgniszed under the auspices of the German EU Presidency was aimed at Framing Creative Futures.

– 1.700 participants and 50.000 users online –

With over 1.700 participants this online conference was the most successful summit in the history of the ECBNetwork. Over social media the ECIS2020 had a total reach of more than 50.000 users. One third of the participants were between 25 and 34 years old and the gender balance of 60% has been shifted in favour of female participants. Over the course of one month these papers were discussed and finally presented on the 28th of October.

– The Policy Forum –

On October 28 also leading policy makers shaping the new programs and policies for innovation in Europe presented their current state of play, especially in the negotiations on the Recovery Funds: Peter Altmaier, Federal Minister of Economics Affairs and Energy, Mariya Gabriel, EU Commissioner and Dr. Christian Ehler, MEP.
Martin Kern, Direktor EIT, presented a one in a life time initiative for innovating the CCS itself – a call to create a Knowledge and Innovation Community for the CCS in Europe, a so-called „Creative KIC“. This EIT-call is expected in late 2021 or early 2022 and will select a consortium with approx. 50 partners from across Europe to create a new innovation agency, in fact setting up a new legal entity and providing seed-funding. Such KIC should be financially selfsustainable in 15 years. The EIT is creating and financing KICs since 2009, f.e. EIT Health, EIT-Digital or EITRawmaterials.

The Policy Forum of European Creative Industries Summit of the German EU-Presidency 2020 was concluded with the support of ECCIA, representing European networks from 14 countries and more than 600 members, most of them SMEs, from different industries, like research, science, heritage and museums by a keynote of Guillaume de Seynes, Executive Vice-President of Hermès International and Chairman of Comité Colbert. His focus on the gap between industry needs and the availability of highly skilled workforce at EU level hit the tone of our times and the challenges European policy-makers are up to in the coming years.

– The New Normal –

Experts and philosophers today speak of a new reality, this New Normal in which we all find ourselves together with constant crises become our new companions. In this VUCA world (volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity) we need creative potential and innovative solutions in order to be able to fight them effectively and to find new ways out of these crises. The creative economy showed its resilience in resent crises like the New Economy (2000) and bank crisis (2008) or the European Sovereign Debt Crisis in 2010. Resilience is part of the creative DNA and enables new answers to be found again and again and problems to be solved through new creative applications. The pandemic or the climate crisis need our ideas and solutions, but also the Social Development Goals (UN SDGs), which all UN member states identified as the greatest global problems in the UN General Assembly in 2015, need creative potential in order to be solved.

– The New Tasks –

We, the creative industry have the task of participating in the European Green Deal and the construction of the new European Bauhaus , as proposed by Commission President von der Leyen.
We, the creative industries are the creative potential to think new solutions and to develop new possibilities that lead out of this and coming crises. We, the creative industries have the means to transform the entire economy sustainably and to shape it ecologically.

If not now; when?
If not here; where?
If not us, who?

We in the ECBNetwork are firmly convinced that the creative economy has the power to break new grounds and we in the ECBN will help that creative ideas emerge and new innovative solutions are developed for the coming societal problems.

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