Due to the increasing reliance of today’s economy on innovation and creativity, creative industries have become a major focus of attention for both academic research and policy development. These industries have been historically associated with innovation, which can deliver innovative outputs and ideas to other sectors within the economy. The innovation capability of creative industries is not only tied to individual traits such as the passion and talents of creative workers, but also to other external factors related with the clustering of the industry. Based on previous literature, scholars from different fields have already identified some factors related to the creative industry cluster (CIC) that could influence the innovation performance of the sector. For instance, knowledge spillover taking place between tenants in the CIC and the historical value of the place itself. However, most of the existing theories explaining these mechanisms are derived from specific case studies in a certain region, whether they can uphold in different contexts still remains relatively unknown. Moreover, the majority of them are often based on scholars’ top-down inductive studies rather than on the daily innovative practice of creative workers themselves. This study addresses these gaps in the literature by investigating how CICs work to affect innovation on the individual level of creative entrepreneurs across two regions, China and the Netherlands. Twelve in-depth interviews were conducted with creative entrepreneurs located in minor CICs across the two nations (business centres in the Netherlands and cultural and creative industry parks in China). Results indicate that besides similarities, creative entrepreneurs in the two countries also reveal notable differences on whether and how they identify with CIC-related factors affecting their innovation proposed by scholars. The study contributes to the existing literature in two aspects. First, it suggests that the similarities found are possibly applicable in different contexts and thus can be utilized by CICs across regions to boost the innovation of their tenants. Second, based on the two country’s cultural, political and structural divergence, the study makes assumptions about possible rationales behind the differences found between them. These assumptions can offer insights to future studies, which aim to further the understanding of how environmental differences play a mediating role in the effect that CICs have on innovation within creative industries.

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Wijngaarden, Y.
Media & Business
Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication

Yang, Xiaofei. (2019, July). How do CICs affect self-perceived innovation of creative entrepreneurs? – A cross-regional study in China and the Netherlands. Media & Business. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/2105/56165