The Emilia-Romagna cultural and creative sector is supported by several regional departments: the Ministry of Culture and Landscape, that of Productive Activities and Education and – marginally – by the Ministries of Territorial Programming and Health. Allowing this sector to be looked at from different perspectives is a strength: a wider array of challenges and needs can be addressed and more opportunities can arise. Several viewpoints have been contributing to creating a more and more integrated ecosystem.
CCIs is a sector with its own autonomy and reputation. At the same time, it is also an horizontal element generating positive spillover effects when it connects and collaborates with other fields: thanks to creative infusions and an out-of-the-box approach, it is keen on experimenting and taking risks; it encourages other realms to innovate and overcome limits.
For this reason, the policy measures adopted in the region have different objectives: they intend to promote and give voice to cultural expressions, foster economic development and capacity building, and stimulate R&D.
Regional laws, networking initiatives, support programmes and training, grants… all of these actions contribute to shaping a more active ecosystem.
Some of these actions tackle specific contexts – i.e. regional laws dedicated to specific subsectors – while others address transversal themes, such as innovation.
The Emilia-Romagna Government has supported the design and implementation of regional laws dedicated to specific CCIs subsectors: these instruments provide these fields with an institutional recognition and highlight their socio-economic relevance for the territory.
Furthermore, these laws define a framework thanks to which future funding and support programmes are made possible.
One of the oldest law is the Performing Arts one (L.R. 13/1999 Norme in materia di spettacolo dal vivo). It aims at fostering the development and growth of a lively and heterogeneous sector by strengthening promotional and distribution activities, by involving new targets through audience engagement, by encouraging the festivals and upskilling. The law operates by providing grants and establishing ad hoc agreements.
A decade later, the Region passed another law to better support another strategic sector, that of the music industry (L.R. 2/2018 Norme in materia di sviluppo del settore musicale). It encourages music literacy, production of contemporary tracks and live events.
The performing arts are supported by regional and national funding, the last one being the Fondo Unico per lo Spettacolo, managed by the national Ministry for Culture.
From 2016 onwards funding provided through grants has been steady, with a slight increase in regional funding. Most of the funding goes to the music sector, followed by theatre and multidisciplinary initiatives, dance and circus.
The Audiovisual law (L.R. 20/2014 Norme in materia di cinema e audiovisivo) was issued to revamp the film industry. According to a first review of results carried out in 2019, this policy tool succeeded in reaching its objective. An increase in funding – from 1 million euros in 2015 to 2,7 million euros in 2019 – has led to an increase in overall spending on the territory, amounting to +300%. Projects financed changed too: in 2019 important documentaries, films and TV shows were produced, costing on average 1 million euros (six times more compared to 2105).
The law operates through two different channels: the Audiovisual Funding Scheme and the Emilia-Romagna Film Commission.
The former is an instrument allowing to concretely implement the guidelines set by the law, providing grants to develop, produce and promote audiovisual outputs. The latter provides services to support professionals and film studios willing to shoot in the region, it also helps organizations distribute their products both nationally and internationally.
Museums and Libraries
The regional law dedicated to museums, libraries, archives (L.R. 18/2000 Norme in materia di biblioteche, archivi storici, musei e beni culturali) highlights the relevance of promoting the historical and cultural heritage to a diverse and broad audience. It also focuses on making sure cultural heritage is easily accessible all over the regional territory through an equal distribution of structures and initiatives.
Museum programming by regional authorities occurs every three years: on this occasion objectives, priorities and processes are defined, in accordance with the evolution of the context. Resources are generally granted to enhance buildings, implement new services, promote initiatives, develop preservation activities and training. Library programming is designed according to the same principles.
The Emilia-Romagna Region has identified CCIs as a high growth potential sector. As a consequence, these industries were included in its Smart Specialization Strategy, the first one, covering the seven-year period from 2014 to 2020 as well as the second one, from 2021 to 2027.
This programming document defines the technological and organizational trajectories that should be pursued to ensure the system – enterprises, Third Sector, laboratories, universities etc – is well-equipped to face the challenges of today’s society. The main aim being the sustainable growth of the territory, following the objectives set by Agenda 2030.
S3 is a transversal strategy integrating a wide array of resources: in the last programming period, from 2014 to 2020, huge investments were carried out on the territory by making use of several regional, national and European policy-instruments and measures.