Technologies for creative future – Forum in Belarus, May 18-19

Create IT is a meeting place for new technologies, culture and creative industries. It offers a visionary outlook on how the Internet and new media, big data and machine learning, virtual reality and augmented reality could shape culture and creative industries of tomorrow. The conference highlights inspiring opportunities that new technologies open to culture, and vise versa, culture and creativity — to development of IT-sphere.
  1. The information is no longer the only asset of post-informational stage of our history. With the help of the Internet tomorrow your information can be available to anyone. But creativity is what really makes you stand out. This is the new value of our epoch.
  2. Manpower is the main asset of Belarus. The country has lively self-motivated professionals in visual and performing arts, photography, fashion, publishing and etc.
  3. Belarusian civil society needs to be boosted and supported. But at the same time, there are great grassroots movements and initiatives, that would make well developed Western Europe envy you. For example, Budzma Belarusami campaign, which brilliantly promotes Belarusian language and culture.
  4. The education starts with teaching critical thinking.
  5. The infrastructure is essential for developing creative industries. Creative entrepreneurs do not identify themselves with conventional spaces and offices, they search for other platforms. So creative hubs are serving not only a space for work, but as places for community development, collaboration and peer to peer education. In Belarus, most of the creative hubs are grassroots, which is amazing, because they’re mostly state sponsored in Europe.
  6. Belarus lacks of governmental recognition and support of the creative sector and its features. The sector is diverse and is hard to understand.
  7. There’s no integration in creative industries on the national level. The industry is mostly grassroots and consists of small but various initiatives. But the lack of official representation (at Ministry of culture web-site, for instance) makes them often invisible.
  8. Development of policy can bring positive changes in its process. But policymakers need arguments, they need to be convinced.
  9. Creative industries in Ukraine are now comprising more than 4% of economics and create more than 575 000 jobs. Now their minister of culture is confident that he’s now able to prove the economic importance of culture.
  10. To find the funding, support, or IT-help choose right people or the right companies. Find the companies which endorse the same values as you have on your project. Or engage new companies, startups who want good content to work on for their portfolio.
  11. Creative projects in Belarus have to have a wide audience and to be scalable to be interesting for funders and sponsors.
  12. There are recourses available. One has just to become the core person of the industry who can utilize them correctly.
  13. At the center of each industry has to be the core people in of this industry. But do we really have those people here?
  14. The biggest mistake of governments, regions, and cities is that they focus on few things and don’t see the big picture. They don’t have the systematic approach.
  15. You need to have strategic alliances.
  16. Your culture people have to start working with your education people and with your business people, need to start working with tourism people, with your bank people. If you don’t do that and you only talk to culture people, and economic people talk to economic people, then nothing happens.
  17. As soon as someone gets to the stage in Belarus, it seems from the speech, that everything is fine. It has been like that in science years ago, it’s now like that at any conference. Meanwhile, we have most of the premises of every industry at their inception stage. So what if we start telling that we actually don’t have anything and start doing something to it.
  18. The scale to which we measure our successes matters. We’re the best for their families, but what happens if we get outside of our comfort zone? Our successes are locally significant. But they have to be globally significant to be considered as a success.  And we must learn to work on this scale.
  19. Creative industries are not about big companies and monstrous projects. Those are rare. Creative industries are really about diverse and multiple small projects and initiatives that are able to partner.
  20. Get together and do something. It’s important to have common projects, for a while having common purposes. Bring people together so that they’re not afraid or suspicious of one another. Leading the cluster is complicated, because you work with absolutely different stakeholders. But the results are worth the efforts.
Key facts 
  • EU consumers have become accustomed to listening to music, catching up with a TV or radio program and playing games on mobile devices. On tablets, they spend, on an average, 70% of their time “consuming” creative works. And, they spend 50% of their smartphone–time not making calls, but playing games, watching videos, listening to music or browsing the internet. [1]
  • European consumers are some of the most “digitally savvy” in the world. Western Europe has 197m smartphone users, the second-highest concentration in the world, and 73.1% of Europeans use the internet. [1]
  • The economic impacts of cultural and creative content on sales of smart connected devices (Estimated indirect impact of cultural and creative contents (videos, games, music, etc.)):

- Tablets €9.4b

- Smartphones €22.27b

- PC`s €10.35b [1] 

  • In the UK ‘IT, software and computer services’ was the largest group, with creative employment of 825 thousand in 2013. Since 2011, there has been an increase of 117 thousand jobs (16.4%) in this group. [3]
  • Digital technology is also becoming increasingly important for cultural business models with 51% of arts and cultural organisations currently using the Internet to generate new revenue streams, an increase of 17% on 2013. [5]
  • £200 million was invested using crowdfunding in the UK in 2012 and it is estimated that 25% of UK adults had used Internet technology to share resources and funds in 2013. [5]
  • 73% of the 947 cultural organisations surveyed in England say that digital activities have had a major positive impact on their work. [5]
  • 51% of arts and cultural organisations said that digital technologies are important or essential to their business models, and these organisations were far more likely to be involved in revenue-generating online activities such as donations and crowdfunding. [4]
  • The digital revolution is transforming culture, just as it is transforming other aspects of our lives. It has increased levels of participation in informal cultural and creative activities, created new networks and forms of interaction, transformed the production and distribution of established art forms and allowed new art forms to emerge. [5] 
  • All growth is digital. The creative sector generated €22 billion in revenue growth between 2003 and 2013, with €36 billion from digital activities setting losses from other delivery platforms. In some sectors, digital revenues are already making up the losses in non-digital revenue; in both lm and television and book publishing, for example, consumer experiences emerging from digital media have started to mature and can now be monetized by industry players. [6]
  • Digital and mobile games are quickly becoming the world’s most consumed and thus most lucrative cultural industry. Economically, the global video game market is expected to generate over $100 billion dollars by 2017 (Sinclair, 2015), outpacing both lm and music and, in the United States, revenue from video games has surpassed lm and music combined (entertainment Software association, 2015). [9]
  • The entertainment Software association (2015) also reports that game design and research programs are flourishing in colleges and universities, further signalling the industry’s growing economic and social relevance. [9] 


Maybe the best museum success story of recent years comes from the small Italian Palazzo Madama in Turin. When confronted with an opportunity to buy an iconic collection of porcelain they put some of the main trends in technology and society to their advantage and managed to successfully crowdfund the acquisition.

The small team of this project managed to raise 100,000 euros (twenty thousand more than their goal) through the smart use of social media. What is great is that in the process they managed to connect with 1,500 people.

What Palazzo Madama understood well is that the key to success in the 21st century is to make connections first, then involve them in value creating processes. [7]

Europeana is the European Union’s flagship digital cultural heritage initiative. The Europeana portal, launched in November 2008, showcases the possibility of cross-cultural domain interoperability on a pan-European level. To date, metadata and thumbnails for over 23 million objects have been aggregated from over 1500 providers from the library, archive, museum, and audiovisual domains. Offering simple and advanced search functionality, or browsing using various parameters, users can link from the representations of the objects held in the portal to the source objects held at the provider institutions.  [8]                                                

  1.$FILE/Creating-Growth.pdf Creating growth. Measuring cultural and creative markets in the EU. December 2014 
  2. Create Together. A Creative Industries Council strategy for Cross Industry Collaboration.
  3. Creative Industries Economic Estimates. Statistical Release. January 2015
  4. Understanding the value of arts & culture. The AHRC Cultural Value Project. 2016
  5. Enriching Britain: Culture, Creativity and Growth The 2015 Report by the Warwick Commission on the Future of Cultural Value
  6. The digital future of creative Europe. The impact of digitisation and the Internet on the creative industries in Europe


Yulya Besplemennova

Jill Cousins 

Arek Keshishian

Erskine Andrew

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