Digging into Manitoba Premier Brian Palister’s promise to evaluate the return to arts investment, CBC interviewed GERG research director Alan Freeman about the economic impact of creativity. The answer is ‘a billion new dollars over the next five years – if you do it right’. The interview says why. Share and don’t miss!
CBC Report on Manitoba PC Government – Creative Investments
CBC Interview with Alan Freeman – Creativity: The Soundest Investment in Town
“There is a science now. We have created a method of measuring the real economic impact of a dollar, in terms of how much dollars it brings back. There [are] a lot of pieces to put together, but it’s not cold fusion,” Freeman said.
But he says the words “social and cultural” should be dropped from the government’s search for a mandate and the word “creative” should be substituted in.
Freeman argues “social and cultural” pursuits, work done by musicians and actors for example, have to be expanded to include other activities that are creative in nature — software development, video game creation, advertising, even someone designing lottery tickets.
Freeman has an almost existential question he believes Premier Brian Pallister and his government should answer when making decisions about investing in social and cultural projects.
“How do you want to go down in history? To pioneer a new approach to creativity and culture or go down in history as the man who lost Winnipeg’s soul?” Freeman asked.
Freeman’s further warning to the government: if you lose something, it may take a long time to return — like the Winnipeg Jets.