CREACT4MED (CReative Entrepreneurs ACTing FOR the future MEDiterranean) builds on the research work conducted by the Euro-Mediterranean Economists Association (EMEA) and the Euro-Mediterranean Network for Economic Studies (EMNES) in the past years on emerging socio-economic trends, challenges and needs in order to develop a renewed vision of socio-economic development in the South Neighbourhood Countries (SNCs). Research conducted in the SNCs resulted in a policy roadmap providing a comprehensive framework to formulate, implement and monitor a fully-fledged MSME policy and to mainstream the “Think Small First” principle in all policy areas relevant to the development of MSMEs in all sectors, including the cultural and creative industry (CCI). Supporting entrepreneurship and MSMEs is therefore crucial to gaining access to markets and create sustainable jobs. Globally, the creative industries are fast growing (estimated by the World Bank (in 2017) to contribute as much as 7% to global GDP. In the cultural sector (mainly architecture, design and photography), there were 1,2 million cultural enterprises generating 193 billion EUR of value added in the EU. No comparative data exists in the Mediterranean region. According to World Bank data in 2017, this industry is growing fast (up to a 10% growth rate in the MENA region) with Kuwait leading the process after setting up its creative industry hub in 2017.
The overall objective of CREACT4MED is to enhance the role of culture and creativity as a vector for employment and resilience in eight SNCs through untapping the potential of the cultural and creative industry (CCI) to create economic value, enhance growth, create decent jobs and foster social inclusion. In doing do, a special emphasis is dedicated to youth and women. In order to accomplish this objective, CREACT4MED seeks to:
- Strengthening the role of CCI in public policy and strategic planning in eight SNCs;
- Supporting new initiatives with a high potential for creating value (economic, social and cultural) and new CCI job opportunities, and promoting entrepreneurship as a mean of self-realisation;
- Improving operational and financial sustainability, replication strategies, exposure and interconnectivity of local CCI initiatives/projects.
- Mapping of CCI ecosystem in eight SNCs in order to increase knowledge on the CCI ecosystem and its potential to create economic, social and cultural values in target countries;
- Designing and implementing the South MED Creative Youth and Women Training and Mentoring Academy in order to build capacities of (future) young and female entrepreneurs active in CCI in target countries.
- Designing and implementing the South MED Creative Youth and Women Programme in order to financially support (sub-grants) 24 creative entrepreneurs/projects and 8 business incubators in the region.
- Awareness raising and community building in order to ensure increased sustainability and interconnectivity of CCI projects/business initiatives, entrepreneurs, NGOs, start-ups, MSMEs (MED CCI HUB).
CREACT4MED is coordinated by the Euro-Mediterranean Economists Association and is co-funded by the European Union.