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The President of the Basque Government highlights the transformative power of the cultural and creative industries at the opening of the Creativity World Forum

2024 April 15
  • The President attended the inauguration of the Creativity World Forum at the Euskalduna Conference Centre, which until Wednesday will bring together agents, institutions and companies from all over the world linked to the Cultural and Creative Industries (CCIs).
  • This year’s theme: "Cultural and Creative Ecosystems: Models of Governance and Innovation". The objective is to learn about different models and the latest innovations in the sector, as well as to create new work opportunities and relationships between sector agents.

The President of the Basque Government, Iñigo Urkullu, attended the inauguration of the Creativity World Forum at the Euskalduna Conference Centre in Bilbao today. The Basque Minister for Culture and Language Policy, Bingen Zupiria, the Basque Deputy Minister for Culture, Andoni Iturbe, and the Director for Promotion of Culture, Aitziber Atorrasagasti, were also present at the opening ceremony, together with the Director General of Flanders DC, Pascal Cools.

The Creativity World Forum (CWF24) is a biennial event organised by the international Districts of Creativity (DC) Network, which, at this year’s event with the support of the Basque Government, aims not only to share different models and the sector’s latest trends, but also to create new work opportunities and relationships between cultural operators.

At the opening ceremony, the President of the Basque Government, Iñigo Urkullu, highlighted the transformative power of the Cultural and Creative Industries and their contribution to the cultural dynamism of society, which is why, he explained, "we have broadened the scope of cultural policies to help stimulate industries based on creativity. We also know that they are essential industries for economic and social development.”

The President stressed that cultural and creative industries "...are at the heart of our policies to promote science, technology and innovation. The Basque Country is a nation that combines tradition and modernity. We are committed to welcoming and promoting new ideas and opportunities for personal and business development. We are committed to innovation. We believe in collaboration. We believe that deep roots strengthen us, and international dialogue enriches us. This Creativity World Forum is an opportunity to strengthen ties and foster international cooperation.”

In his speech, the President stressed that the forum, which is being held in the Basque Country until Wednesday, will help to promote new ideas and projects, strengthen the commitment to the development of cultural and creative industries, reinforce the commitment of public policies to the creative ecosystem, promote technological, economic and social innovation, and with all this "continue to build together a more humane, prosperous, fairer and greener future".

Creativity World Forum 2024

The central venue for the Creativity World Forum will be the Euskalduna Conference Centre (Bilbao), but there will also be events taking place at the Tabakalera (Donostia-San Sebastián) and the Artium (Vitoria-Gasteiz). Up until Wednesday, hundreds of people will take part in conferences, focus area workshops, good practices exhibitions, debates and guided tours of places and spaces related to culture and creativity. (Click here to view the entire programme).

This event is expected to be a milestone in terms of increasing the visibility of the Basque cultural and creative industries. It will help to consolidate their position at international level and develop their innovative potential by creating synergies with key players from all over the world.

Biennial Event

Held every two years, CWF24 is a signature event of the Districts of Creativity (DC) Network. The previous CWF event took place in 2022 in Germany’s Baden-Württemberg State. The Basque Country is bringing together key figures from the cultural and creative industries sector, government, business and education. They will discuss creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship.

A hallmark of the Creativity World Forum is its aim to share and develop practices that stimulate interdisciplinary creativity in society to promote innovation and prosperity. However, this year's event aims to go one step further and generate new working methods, relationships or business projects between the different agents that will gather in the three Basque capitals, projecting the Basque Country as a territory of collaboration. To achieve this, the official programme will highlight the role played by the regions and will build on the pioneering policies for Cultural and Creative Industries developed in the Basque Country in recent years, as well as implementing the Basque Smart Specialisation Strategy (RIS3). The CWF24 motto is "Cultural and Creative Ecosystems: Models of Governance and Innovation.”

Four Thematic Areas

Four Thematic Areas (TAs) have been selected to achieve the CWF24’s objectives. Each of them is coordinated by a Basque organisation with extensive experience in the subject and its derivatives, as well as in coordinating projects. Key agents in each of these areas, led by a Basque organisation, have been working in the months leading up to the event to identify the main challenges in the area, as well as examples of good practice. With the participation of representatives of selected success stories, all focus areas will play an important role in the Forum. This approach by the TAs, as well as the previous working process, are two of the main innovations of this year’s event, giving its programme a solid, diverse and participatory identity. The TAs of the CWF24 are:

  1. Governance and Cultural and Creative Industries
  2. Innovation with and within Cultural and Creative Industry sectors
  3. Cultural and Creative Industry Companies and Markets
  4. Education and Research in Cultural and Creative Industries


Supported by the Districts of Creativity Network, an international student exchange programme (DC Living Lab) is planned. This is a regular programme at the CWF. It gives students the opportunity to work as part of an interdisciplinary team to tackle real challenges in the cultural and creative industries. The difference in this year's event, taking place in the Basque Country, is that it can be followed both online and in person. It is also coordinated by KSIgune, the Knowledge Centre for Culture and Creative Industries of Basque Higher Education.

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Politicians attending the event