UK industry in danger because creative subjects deemed ‘strategically unimportant’

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Industry leaders believe the UK is falling behind the emerging economies because creative subjects have been demoted in British cucciculums, according to a new survey.

Using a YouGov poll of over 2,000 employers a report by Kingston University, The Future Skills League Table, shows that despite government figures saying that the creative industries contributing £116bn a year to the economy – more than the aeronautical, automotive, life sciences and power industries put together - creative subjects are under attack with the Department for Education describing them as “strategically unimportant”.

In the survey 56% of senior business decision makers from names such as Ocado, Deloitte, TikTok and Mastercard said they were concerned about increasing competition from emerging economies such as China and Singapore  who are putting creative education at the heart of growth plans.

The survey shows employers believe a portfolio of skills for innovation are needed urgently for the UK to thrive, including problem-solving, communication and creativity.

“The creative industries make a substantial contribution to the UK economy, and crucially, they add value to other industries” said Professor Steven Spier, vice-chancellor of Kingston University. “However, the importance of creativity and innovation to the future UK economy contradicts government declarations that university education for the creative industries is not important strategically, with reductions in funding no doubt to follow.

“We asked employers about the challenge of remaining globally competitive over the next 10-20 years and the skills required to meet those challenges. The Future Skills report shows the overwhelming concern of the threat from emerging economies, and the greatest need was for creative problem-solving as well as adaptability, communication and analytical skills – these are the skills for innovation.”

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