This research was conducted by Silvia Cerisola at Politecnico di Milan, Italy


This paper reports on the ‘propensity’ of a region to be creative and the socio-economic characteristics affecting the different types of creative specialisation that occur in a location, specialisations such as artistic, scientific and economic. The study uses data from the Italian Patent Office and the Italian census between 2001 and 2011. It was found that socio-cultural diversity (meaning race, religion, language, origin, etc.) was the strongest determinant of a locality’s propensity to creativity and the degree of creative diversification. Places which are more open to newcomers are better able to promote novel combinations of resources and ideas.

Socio-cultural diversity leads a local system to be creative

Socio-cultural diversity is a positive and very significant determinant of creativity at the local level. However, the impact of socio-cultural diversity on creativity is much lower where there is a presence of very low-skilled foreign-born residents.

Accessible networks are crucial to maximising the benefits of diversity

Well-integrated accessible networks positively affect the degree of creative diversification, particularly with the presence of cultural amenities and the general level of education. This leads to different creative talents interacting, generating innovative ideas and new breakthroughs. Thus, attracting a diverse range of people seems to be advantageous so that they may access the networks and amenities.

This summary is by Shelly-Ann Gajadhar, King’s Knowledge Exchange Associate

Title Multiple creative talents and their determinants at the local level
Author(s) Cerisola, S.
Publication date 2017
Source Journal of Cultural Economics, Vol 42, Iss 2, pp 243-269
Author email