Turner Contemporary, Rendezvous, Margate, designed by David Chipperfield Architects (detail). Image by JZA Photography / RIBA Library Photographs Collection


About Us.

The Creative Industries Federation is the national membership organisation bringing together all of the UK’s arts, creative industries and cultural education to provide an authoritative and united voice in a way never done before.


Our extraordinary sector is the fastest growing part of the UK economy. It feeds and fascinates hearts and minds and is the UK’s calling card to the world. But it has never quite punched its weight in government - until now.


The Federation was the brainchild of Sir John Sorrell, the designer and UK business ambassador, and a heavyweight team of creative leaders including Sir Nicholas Serota of Tate, Sir Peter Bazalgette from Arts Council England and Caroline Rush of the British Fashion Council. We have a board of top figures and an equally dynamic UK council of members ranging from multinationals to young entrepreneurs. We have now gone global with an international council too.


We are entirely independent, with our revenues - and our strength - coming from our incredible array of 1,000+ members from architecture to video games, publishing to performance, creative tech to craft and design, as well as universities, colleges and conservatoires, across all the UK's nations and regions.


From the moment we were launched as a professional fighting force, we have been embraced by, and engaged with, government and political parties of all hues. We have worked closely with Whitehall departments including No 10, Treasury and DCMS as well as the Scottish Parliament, Welsh Assembly and city administrations, making the case for the infrastructure and investment - public and private - crucial for future growth and success.


We produce reports and submissions to add ballast to the arguments and host agenda-setting events that both inform the policy work and offer opportunities to meet fellow members. We are a unique network also offering the potential for exciting new commercial and cultural collaborations. We are fleet of foot, non-bureaucratic and intensely practical. At our social gatherings, we also promise fun.


Progress in our first two years of operation has surpassed all expectations. You can read details below. The new challenges posed by Brexit have made it more important than ever that we articulate the value of our sector, economically and socially. If ever there was a need for the Federation, it is now.



David Bowie by David Wedgbury (Detail) copyright National Portrait Gallery, London (NPG x47344) npg.org.uk



Work so far.

Links across government – We have forged extensive links across government, including No 10 and Treasury, through BEIS, DIT and the GREAT campaign, Department for Education, Foreign Office and DCMS, as well as the Scottish Parliament, Welsh Assembly and city administrations.


Policy and advocacy - We have published research and engaged with government on subjects including creative education and its importance to the skills pipeline, diversity and access, and the economic case for public investment in culture. Our public advocacy combined with work behind the scenes helped secure the inclusion of the creative industries in plans for the government's industrial strategy, as well as a better-than-expected funding settlement for the arts in the November 2015 spending review. We have also consulted on issues including the role of the BBC in the wider arts and creative industries, the importance of DCLG to underpinning the creative economy and what higher education reforms mean for creative subjects.


Networking events – More than 500 members joined us for our second birthday celebration, featuring performers and speakers including Business Secretary Greg Clark, Culture Secretary Karen Bradley, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan and Scottish Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop. A similar number attended the year prior to hear George Osborne, then Chancellor, endorse the importance of the sector. Our summer reception at The Hospital Club saw 200 guests including then-Culture Secretary John Whittingdale meet for drinks.


Events and advocacy across the UK – We meet with members across the length and breadth of the country. Our series of 10 quick-response evidence-gathering meetings on Brexit is visited cities from Edinburgh to Plymouth. We organised hustings for the London mayoral elections and have held discussions on the creative scenes in cities including Cardiff, Newcastle and Norwich.


International trends – C.International, our twice-yearly members-only magazine on the international position of the arts and creative industries, was launched with interviews and in-depth analysis on funding, exports and global trends. Our International Council of leading figures from around the world is identifying emergent opportunities for the sector and examples of innovation and best practice.


Resources for members - As well as our published reports and C.International, we have run members surveys on the value of the EU (launching the results at an event with then Prime Minister David Cameron) and the impact of Brexit. We run a 100-strong working group on issues around higher and further education as well as another on finance. Our step-by-step guide to sources of funding and finance was published in partnership with the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.


Unique Breakfasts - Our series of small, supercharged policy sessions has seen members meet with Channel 4 Chief Executive David Abraham and Jesse Norman, Industry Minister. Ofcom chief Sharon White and Naomi Climer, President of the Institution of Engineering and Technology, are among future guest speakers.


Newsletter and members’ directory - Our regular newsletters include member news and offers as well as research updates, with plans in development for a members-only section of the website including members’ directory and other useful tools.




Interested in joining?



Belle, 2013 (detail) copyright Fox Searchlight courtesy of the BFI