Marc Lis, what do you remember about the year 2021 that has just ended?

“This is the second year that we have had a pandemic that continues to have an impact on all aspects of our daily lives, including social, health-related and economic dimensions. 2021 was also a year of opportunity for the creative industries sector, with the conclusion of our first Circular By Design Challenge. On this occasion, 5 participants were rewarded with partnership with industrial companies. This is a great opportunity to show how creative solutions that are aligned with the circular economy can help generate and produce new economically viable models.

2021 was also the year in which we witnessed the biggest and most ambitious projects for the creative industries. The success of the Circular By Design Challenge has led to a second edition with an expanded scope at the European level (with the inclusion of start-ups from the European Union, the European Economic Area and the European Free Trade Association) as well as with students. The 63 applications received show a continued willingness to contribute to the development of the circular economy.

A detailed sectoral mapping, describing the creative and cultural landscape and its players in Luxembourg, was published. It provides a better understanding of the diversity and economic weight of this sector.

Finally, the “Meet the Zebras” webinar series was a timely project, highlighting the ecosystem of Luxembourg’s creative and cultural industries. Throughout its 21 online sessions, this initiative allowed us to highlight the sector’s potential for innovation in the context of the Global Creativity and Innovation Week, reconnect with the sector’s players and explore current needs and trends.

What are the key challenges facing the creative industries sector in 2022?

“Resilience remains the key word for 2022. The creative economy has shown great resilience and adaptability during the pandemic and 2022 is certainly shaping up to be a challenging year for creatives. The challenge will be to keep a positive attitude and to continue to make people aware that creative thinking can open the door to new opportunities.

Awareness of cross-sectoral opportunities will be more important than ever. So with more and better funding programmes at the European level, the overall outlook could be very positive.

What are the main projects that the Luxembourg Creative Industries Cluster is working on?

I see three major projects. Firstly, the continued work on the sectoral mapping in collaboration with our Market Intelligence department, in order to follow the evolution of the sector.

Secondly, the organisation of the second edition of the Circular By Design Challenge. The 12 projects selected at the beginning of the year have begun their support cycle. We also anticipate the launch of a third edition during 2022.

Finally, in collaboration with the Ministry of the Economy’s directorate general for small and medium-sized enterprises, we are working with the communication agency Quattro to develop a new timeless brochure format for the creative industries cluster, with an augmented reality dimension.

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