Building skills for cultural and creative sectors in the digital era: current needs, trends and challenges

Mara Cerquetti


This chapter discusses the role of higher education institutions (HEIs) in training cultural and creative graduates and professionals and improving their skills in the digital era. After analysing how culture and creativity can help innovation worldwide, the paper examines the uniqueness of the cultural and creative sector (CCS) and its positive and negative aspects, such as high rates of precariousness, fluctuations in income, contract instability and difficulty accessing social protection, in addition to its sizeable contribution to the European economy. The discussion then turns to European policies and the scientific literature to understand how the current debate addresses these issues. Among them are the need to fill skills gaps, including entrepreneurship and digital innovation, and the scant consideration given to differences between cultural and creative sub-sectors. In the final part, the essay points out the need to reshape the role of HEIs by improving students’ awareness of and critical thinking regarding their career path and supporting their resilience in uncertain times through co-creativity-based activities.

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