Alexey Kudrin: Russia has no strategy for developing its creative sector

28 February 2017

The Head of the Center for Strategic Research and Deputy Chairman of the Economic Council under the President of the Russian Federation expressed this opinion at a session on the second day of the Russian Investment Forum entitled ‘The New Urban Economy: Creative Capital and Effective Planning’.

“During the global economic crisis the creative sector grew by 14% a year, going against the overall trend. This has made this sector the focus of sustained interest on the part of economists and investors looking for highly profitable areas with growth potential”, Kudrin said.

The world is changing before our eyes, and new demands for professional skills are emerging: “Experts at the Davos Forum predicted that by 2020 creativity will be one of a trio of key skills on the labour market”, Kudrin said.

He believes that potential for developing creative professions is going unused in Russia today, although growth in the number of people employed in this area will help to accelerate the process. More importantly, however, Russia does not even have a strategy for developing the creative sector. By way of example, Kudrin discussed his hometown of St. Petersburg: here, all of the conditions needed to develop the creative and technology industry are in place, but the industry’s share of the city’s GDP fluctuates between 1% and 1.5%. The same figure for Europe’s major cities (London, Berlin) is between 6% and 9%.

Kudrin considers that adapting education systems to contemporary reality offers the best opportunity for growth. “Technological progress and robotization will soon free up a lot of human resources. These resources can instead be used to expand the creative sector. We must therefore significantly increase the share of interdisciplinary programmes in schools and universities, to bring together creative and technical areas of knowledge”, Kudrin argued.

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