Winning and losing in the creative industries: an analysis of creative graduates' career opportunities across creative disciplines
Comunian, R., Faggian, A. and Jewell, S. (2011) Winning and losing in the creative industries: an analysis of creative graduates' career opportunities across creative disciplines. Cultural Trends, 20 (3-4). pp. 291-308. ISSN 1469-3690
To link to this article DOI: 10.1080/09548963.2011.589710
Following earlier work looking at overall career difficulties and low economic rewards faced by graduates in creative disciplines, the paper takes a closer look into the different career patterns and economic performance of “Bohemian” graduates across different creative disciplines. While it is widely acknowledged in the literature that careers in the creative field tend to be unstructured, often relying on part-time work and low wages, our knowledge of how these characteristics differ across the creative industries and occupational sectors is very limited. The paper explores the different trajectory and career patterns experienced by graduates in different creative disciplinary fields and their ability to enter creative occupations. Data from the Higher Education Statistical Agency (HESA) are presented, articulating a complex picture of the reality of finding a creative occupation for creative graduates. While students of some disciplines struggle to find full-time work in the creative economy, for others full-time occupation is the norm. Geography plays a crucial role also in offering graduates opportunities in creative occupations and higher salaries. The findings are contextualised in the New Labour cultural policy framework and conclusions are drawn on whether the creative industries policy construct has hidden a very problematic reality of winners and losers in the creative economy.