Policy Guidance Tool


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Creative Amsterdam

1. Introduction

Goals, results, timeframe, context and relevant actors.


Creative Amsterdam stimulates the creative industries in seven cities of the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area. The programme was initiated in 2007, with a pledge to cooperate on the part of the region’s local government and other organisations.
The Amsterdam Metropolitan Area is the fifth biggest creative metropolis in the world. Many companies base themselves here because the area is easily accessible, creatives want to live here, and innovation and commerce go hand in hand. However, creative players can not always find each other. This is what Creative Amsterdam intends to change.

Creative Amsterdam aims to promote:
- The establishment of (international) creative companies in the region;
- The take-up of products and services from creative companies in the region by (international) businesses;
- The attractiveness of the region for international creative talent;
- Cross-sectoral innovation in creative and cultural industries and;
- Internationalisation in creative and cultural industries;

How?
A one-stop shop for the creative industries
Creative Amsterdam offers national and international companies access to the creative potential of the region. Conversely, it also helps the region’s creative companies find the right facilities
to stimulate their entrepreneurialism.

In the first phase the programme was focused on start-up companies, in the second phase the programme paid attention to growing companies.

The programme does this through three key activities:
- Concentrating information and activities, by bringing them together in a single physical and digital location
- Facilitating, by improving services to foreign companies and to starting and growing entrepreneurs
- Promoting the creative industries in the region so that they attract national and international attention.

2. Cluster connection

This paragraph is to determine whether the project is linked to a creative cluster in this region and whether there is a link with other clusters.

Is this case part of a cluster?

Yes, the project Creative Amsterdam could be envisaged as the starting point of shaping the creative cluster in the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area. Offering services to creative companies and the seven creative cities in the region.

What type of cluster (digital, fashion, creative general etc), does the cluster consist of one type of (sub)sectors or is it heterogeneous?

The Amsterdam Area is a heterogeneous supercluster when it comes to cci’s. This means that all sub-sectors within the creative industries are evenly spread across the region and are alike in number of companies.

What actors does the cluster consist of?

Mainly SME’s, 16 governmental parties, knowledge institutes and the service providers for the cci’s such as the branche organisations.

Who is responsible for this cluster? Is there a cluster organization?

The Amsterdam Innovation Motor (AIM) is responsible for the cluster. As of 2013 AIM is the formal excecuting agency for the Amsterdam Economic Board. AIM is a triple helix organisation, funded by government, industry and knowledge institutes. It receives basic funding from its triple helix partners and acquires additional funding from all three levels including subsidies to execute projects.

Are there other strong clusters in the area/region, and if so: are there exchanges between the creative clusters and the others?

The Amsterdam region has various strong clusters. AIM is responsible for 7 clusters: Life Sciences, ICT, Financial and Business Services, Creative Industries and since 2013: Tourism, Agro-food and Logistics. Also the theme sustainability falls under the auspices of AIM. All clusters are closely linked and exchange information on a regular bases.

3. Role of government

This paragraph is to determine the role of (local/regional/national) government and policy in this case.

How important is the role of the government in this case?

The government is one of the three founding parties of the Amsterdam Economic Board and provides 50% of the budget. In addition the regional government often participates in projects and provides the needed co-financing.

What are the relevant policies that contribute to this case?

The Amsterdam Economic Board was established after the OECD report that concluded that more interaction between the triple helix parties was necessary in order to maintain and up-grade Amsterdam’s position as a leading innovative and economic region. There are several policies closely interlinked to the Board strategy including the Human Capital Agenda, the KIA (Knowledge and Innovation Agenda) and many more that can be found on the Board website.

What are the policy instruments used?

The Board is an advisory and executive organ and therefore not responsible for the policy instruments.

Please pay attention to financing (total budget relevant to the cluster), percentage of government funding in the total budget available for this case and any other resources made available.

AIM is a triple helix organisation, funded by government, industry and knowledge institutes. It receives basic funding from its triple helix partners and acquires additional funding from all three levels including subsidies to execute projects. Creative Amsterdam received funding twice. For the first phase 1.5 mln for two years (effectively 3) and 1.2 mln for two years (effectively 3) the second phase called Next Level.
In the first phase the project focused on building the cluster and offering services to start-ups. In the second phase it was about offering services to fast-growing companies mainly on cross-sectoral innovation and internationalisation. The 95% of the budget came from government (50% national funding, 50% regional funding), the remaining 5% was triple helix and private funding from the Chamber of Commerce.

4. Role of private sector

This paragraph is to determine the role of private actors in this case.

In your case, what role(s) do private actors play and how important are they?

The Chamber of Commerce contributed to the project as did AIM (see above). However, the private sector was mostly the target of the project. It was about establishing the opportunities for growth for SME’s in the cci’s.

Please pay attention to financing (total budget relevant to the cluster), percentage of government funding in the total budget available for this case and any other resources made available.

Unknown

5. Role of knowledge institutions

This paragraph is to determine the role of Knowledge Institutes (aka Schools, Universities etc) in this case.

Are knowledge institutions involved?

The Knowledge Institutes took part in events related to knowledge dissemination and entrepreneurial skills. They did not fund the project.

If knowledge institutions are involved, please describe their contribution (including financial).

See above.

6. Successes and failures of the case

This paragraph is to determine what the success and fail factors are in your case. Please keep in mind that it is important for ECIA to find out whether it is context, financing, the various actors, change of policy etc.

Please describe the main success and fail factors, provide a clear description, limit the use of bullet points.

Success factors:
• the “just-do-it-approach” worked well with entrepreneurs. They called the team the ghostbusters for creative industries;
• Facilitating the one-stop-shop for entrepreneurs and therefore solving the problems for both the government and the cci’s;
• the contribution from the government;

Fail factors:
• The programme has not been continued after 6 years, because the problem of the government relating to the cci’s had been solved. As soon as a problem disappears for the government, politicians are less willing to contribute to a project as this. It is hard to keep their interest;

7. Replication potential

This paragraph is to determine if this case could be copied by another region, country or even Europe.

Would it be possible to replicate this case in another region? If so, in which region?

Creative Amsterdam could be replicated anywhere but support from the government is vital to succeed.

What would be the conditions to do this?

Unknown

8. Finance model

Please pay attention to financing (total budget relevant to the cluster), percentage of government funding in the total budget available for this case and any other resources made available.

Unknown

If knowledge institutions are involved, please describe their contribution (including financial)

Unknown

9. Contact

Johanna van Antwerpen, j.vanantwerpen [at] amecboard.com
www.creativeamsterdam.nl
www.amsterdameconomicboard.com



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