New research centre will investigate copyright in a digital world

Published: 31 January 2013

A £5m new centre dedicated to examining the changing nature of copyright and the need for new business models in the digital age is being launched today.

The Scotsman: New look at copright key to digital boom

A new centre dedicated to examining the changing nature of copyright and the need for new business models in the digital age is being launched today (Thursday 31 January) at the University of Glasgow. 

CREATe logoThe Centre for Creativity, Regulation, Enterprise and Technology (CREATe) brings together internationally renowned researchers from seven UK universities who will work to address the challenges an increasingly digital world presents to government, business and content creators. 

Over the next four years, 40 CREATe projects focused on the intersections between culture, the economy and technology will offer policymakers invaluable analyses for developing new regulatory frameworks. The research will also play into debate about the growth of new and emerging services.  CREATe’s projects are led by experts in law, business, economics, technology, psychology and cultural analysis and are funded by a £5m investment from UK research councils. Over the funding period, the University of Glasgow is committing a further £1.7m to research posts and PhDs in the Colleges of Arts and Social Sciences to establish CREATe as an international centre of research excellence. 

Martin KretschmerCREATe Director Professor Martin Kretschmer said: “The vast expansion of access to digital technology in recent years has created tremendous opportunities for the UK creative sector, which generates around £60bn each year, or 6% of the UK economy. As the sector increasingly moves towards digital content, copyright issues are becoming more important than ever. 

“Studies have shown that between 60% and 70% of young people illegally download music, movies or TV shows, but often those who download most are also the best customers. Producers are being forced to rethink their ways of doing business. 

“As a professor at the University of Glasgow’s School of Law, I’m very proud that CREATe will be based here and that our funders have made such a significant investment in a project of real importance.” 

At the launch event, which will be held at the University of Glasgow’s Hunterian Museum this evening, attendees will hear presentations from speakers from the UK and Scottish Governments, the creative industries, and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), one of CREATe’s primary funders. 

Professor Rick Rylance, Chief Executive of the AHRC, said: “The Creative Economy is of the greatest importance to the economic health and the cultural life of our country. We are in the midst of the profound transformations brought about by the digital revolution. Understanding these changes, and the challenges and opportunities they present, is crucial to our future in law, regulation, business, the cultural sphere and other areas. This is why the foundation of CREATe is so important, and why it is equally important that it brings together the different research councils and other agencies to support its work. We have high hopes of its great success.” 

Jo Swinson MP, UK Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Employment Relations, Consumer and Postal Affairs, who will speak at the launch event, said: "To maintain the success of the UK's world class creative industries, policy makers need to understand the issues the sector faces. CREATe will bring together academia, government and industry to build a robust evidence base. This will shape policy and ultimately help our creative industries compete in the global market." 

Michael Russell MSP, Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning, who will also speak at the event, said: “Research of this kind is vital to the Scottish economy and helps to ensure our educational excellence in research continues. 

"I am delighted that this innovative new research centre will be based in Glasgow University and I am sure it will offer many benefits to both the university and business communities in Scotland. It further reinforces our reputation as a world leader in education that continues to look at new and diverse ways to grow and improve." 

The official launch will be followed by an intensive one-day working conference on Friday 1 February at the Lighthouse in Glasgow for academics and representatives of the creative industries. The conference will present case studies of transition from analogue to digital (such as music and publishing) contrasting these with 'born digital' sectors (such as games or social media). Panel discussion participants include science-fiction writer Charlie Stross, social entrepreneur and publisher Frances Pinter, Google’s UK policy manager Theo Bertram, Stewart Henderson of record label Chemikal Underground, and Tony Clayton of the UK Intellectual Property Office. 

CREATe is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). 

Led by the University of Glasgow, CREATe comprises the University of Edinburgh, University of Strathclyde, University of St Andrews, University of Nottingham’s digital economy hub (Horizon), the University of East Anglia (UEA) and Goldsmiths, University of London. Nesta, the Intellectual Property Office and the Technology Strategy Board, played an advisory role in the setting up of CREATe. This powerful academic consortium is connected to some 80 creative industry partners, comprising individual creators, SMEs and major technology and content firms, the initial base for its further outreach in the creative economy.




Media / Press Contacts

AHRC: Danielle Moore-Chick - 01793 416 021

CREATe / University of Glasgow: Ross Barker – 0141 330 8593 / 07816 984 686

 Notes to editors:

CREATe will provide live video footage of the launch event between 1715 and 1830 hours on 31st January 2013 through 

Centre for Copyright and New Business Models in the Creative Economy: The AHRC, Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), through the Digital Economy Programme, launched a new initiative in Copyright and New Business Models in the Creative Economy in 2011. £4M (£5M Full Economic Cost (FEC)) was made available to support one multidisciplinary research centre over a four year period focussing on real research challenges in the creative economy, relating to new digital technologies and issues of copyright and new business models. 

One of the aims for the Centre will be to leverage significant additional income or support from partners and other sources such that, after the four-year period of Research Council funding, the Centre will be able to develop the legacy of its work, including sustaining partnerships, delivering impact and continuing other major benefits. In short, the Centre will be expected to be sustainable in an appropriate

The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) funds world-class, independent researchers in a wide range of subjects: ancient history, modern dance, archaeology, digital content, philosophy, English literature, design, the creative and performing arts, and much more.  This financial year the AHRC will spend approximately £98m to fund research and postgraduate training in collaboration with a number of partners. The quality and range of research supported by this investment of public funds not only provides social and cultural benefits but also contributes to the economic success of the UK. 

The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) is the UK’s main agency for funding research in engineering and physical sciences. EPSRC invests around £800m a year in research and postgraduate training, to help the nation handle the next generation of technological change. The areas covered range from information technology to structural engineering, and mathematics to materials science. This research forms the basis for future economic development in the UK and improvements for everyone’s health, lifestyle and culture. EPSRC works alongside other Research Councils with responsibility for other areas of research. The Research Councils work collectively on issues of common concern via research Councils UK.   

The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) is the UK's largest organisation for funding research on economic and social issues. It supports independent, high quality research which has an impact on business, the public sector and the third sector. The ESRC’s total budget for 2012/13 is £205 million. At any one time the ESRC supports over 4,000 researchers and postgraduate students in academic institutions and independent research institutes.  




First published: 31 January 2013