A Proud Part of the Creatives Industry? Here's How the Pandemic Shook the Creative Economy Globally.
With Covid-19 spreading like wildfire, there's no way our economies were spared. And perhaps the creative industry had the worst hit...
From arts to advertising to journalism, theatre to music most of the things you call hobbies, we call the Creative Industries.
All these sectors contribute largely to a nation's GDP.
However, with the seemingly endless pandemic, the creative industry has hit a rough patch, with the survival of the fittest, that is those who had invested in digital marketing, e-commerce, etc., prevailing.
India is a country that has culture waiting with bated breath in every nook and corner. This makes the arts and heritage sectors indispensable to our cultural relations with the rest of the world.
ICCI, Art X, and British Council, in a joint report, discussed the impact of the pandemic on India's creative economy.
It plainly said that it's high time we took integral steps to deter permanent closure and long-term upheaval of these areas.
The report corroborates that 90% of the sector is scared of the long-term consequences of social distancing on the creative economy and its capacity to recover.
It brings to light the ceaseless uncertainty in the creative sector.
In Digital Media
The e-commerce world can work wonders for the creative sphere.
Creative organisations which in due time had dipped their toes in digital marketing e-commerce were at ease during troubled times.
While the creative and crafts economy stays largely dominated by women, the pandemic just intensified the ridge of inequality, as the access to digital technology stays restricted to the males.
Impact of Covid-19
Furthermore, the report demonstrates that the formal and informal creative economy has decreased by 16%.
What’s worse is organisations are shutting down forever mainly to evade bankruptcy while others are cutting costs and staff to stay afloat.
The freelancers and the gig force seem to be disproportionately affected. Individual professionals and artisans are living a hand-to-mouth life outliving on state authorities’ micro-grants.
The digital gap between metros and rural communities makes it harder for artisans from or in rural India due to lack of access to WIFI and digital techniques.
The creative sector has entrepreneurs and organisations mushrooming, adapting to reach digital audiences.
However, the meagre income from new digital income streams is unreliable and minor to live with.
India's creative economy craves institutional backing to maintain the livelihoods of the artists and arts organisations who nourish it.
26% of the sector panics they may shut perpetually by the end of March 2021, with only 1% today having ensured government grants and 2% bank loans.
The Indian Government at every level needs to join hands and make a concerted and an organised national response to bolster the sector during these times of emergency.
Digital skills undertakings, along with governments and companies' offerings and grants, would go a long way in aiding craftspersons and corporations to adjust to new ways of generating, distributing, and selling.
The National Culture Fund can furnish grants to stabilised urban and rural companies for artisans.The pandemic has forced us all adapt to fresh lifestyles, meaning that the creative sectors too have found recent strategies of functioning worldwide.
While countries and parliaments globally plan an economic comeback, one cannot not pay heed to the authentic economic and social consequence arts have on India's nationwide well-being and GDP.
Emboldening the creative economy now in India needs to be at the top of our to-do lists to keep our cultural flames alive and burning.