How our creative industries make society better

Investing in the creative industries isn’t just about making money or new technologies, it’s about living together in a better society.

It was said that in the Roman Empire, what people wanted was bread and circuses. They wanted to eat and they wanted to be entertained and to share cultural experiences.

We’ve got amazing stories in UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) about bread (look at our food programme!) but we also need to talk about circuses – the cultural environment in which we live is part of our foundation. Everyone needs not just the basics of life. They also need to live that life communally and have things to share and discuss.

As a historian, I look at the way people live together. I look at the rituals they have and the way they engage, and I see deep commonalities.

I see societies that have invested in culture are strong and resilient. It’s what keeps them alive and fresh. There’s a chilling effect when that goes. Totalitarianism tends to have very limited and narrow views on what culture can do, and these are societies that tend not to last very long.

Continue reading here


* indicates required

XpoNorth will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing. Please let us know all the ways you would like to hear from us:

You can change your mind at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link in the footer of any email you receive from us, or by contacting us at We will treat your information with respect. For more information about our privacy practices please visit our website. By clicking below, you agree that we may process your information in accordance with these terms.

We use Mailchimp as our marketing platform. By clicking below to subscribe, you acknowledge that your information will be transferred to Mailchimp for processing. Learn more about Mailchimp's privacy practices here.