The Creative Industries in Northern Ireland (Part 1)


In the first of a series, Christine James, the founder of our podcast sponsor Blick Shared Studios, provides a brief introduction to the Creative Industries and the important contribution they make to Northern Ireland's economy and quality of life. 

The Creative Industries are the fastest growing sector of the UK economy contributing almost £90 billion of GVA; four times the GVA of the automotive industry, six times as much as life sciences and nearly ten times that of aerospace. It is forecast to grow to £128 billion by 2025 and generate one million new jobs by 2030.

The Creative sector in Northern Ireland is diverse and covers a broad range of business activities from radio, film and television productions such as Game of Thrones and The Fall, to video game development, music, photography, advertising, publishing, software, performing arts, design & crafts. The Creative sectors play a big role in the economic development and growth of the region. Locally, over 43,000 people work in the creative industries or in creative occupations. This represents more than 5 per cent of the workforce (1). Since creative industries rely on individual creativity, skill and talent, they have the potential to:

·        create capital and jobs

·        develop intellectual property

·        advance the way other business sectors innovate and compete

·        enhance Northern Ireland's profile on the world stage.

Because of these factors the NI Executive has recognised promoting innovation, R & D and creativity as a key priority in rebuilding and rebalancing our economy. There is also a really exciting grassroots creative scene in Northern Ireland doing their own bit to drive economic and social innovation and make Northern Ireland a really interesting and exciting place to live work and visit.

Over the next week, check back for our series of blog posts outlining some of our favourite people places and activities currently supporting and nurturing the creative industries in Northern Ireland.

(1) DCAL, Creative Industries Economic Estimates Northern Ireland: Annual Report (2015). Available online at: