Digital Industries in Sheffield

Brendan Moffett

The creative and digital industries in Sheffield have been a real success story in recent times. They are currently giving us our highest growth in the job numbers and within that, high value jobs are really contributing to the GPA, which is really important. As for the breakdown in the three areas, sector which is the predominant driver of that growth is the digital sector. And you know the software development, IT; lots and lots of growth - in that sector; and lots and lots of growing SMEs in that space harnessing new technologies to serve national and international customers. 

As a secondary element to the creative and digital industries is one of moral support service to the manufacturing sector in Sheffield. We still have a buoyant manufacturing sector which again is very high value, but increasingly having to harness design and technology to find new ways of innovating and move this business forward. 

So it is an interesting collaboration between conventional manufacturing companies in the creative and the digital industries, which is really supporting the economic growth. And all that is part of the burgeoning and growing design and print community there. We have high numbers of freelance graphic artists and high number of design agencies. They are sort of utilising Sheffield heritage as a good manufacturing base we have a high number of very good quality print plants. They are near the industrial part of the city. So lots of major print contracts and major print jobs ends up coming through Sheffield because we have that expertise here in the city. 

What we are trying to do from the city planning perspective is to aggregate the digital and creative industries to a designated zone of the city, so that they can benefit from networking with each other, from bumping into each other, from supplying to each other. Not only it helps people get business opportunities on this physical layout. It also adds the vibrancy to the city. So it creates a buzz and a feel. The creative and digital industries provide us sort of more "venture" around them. That makes city really attractive.

So you know we have a digital campus where we have creative and digital centre called the Workstation, which is aligned to a smart space - an independent cinema. So we have all of these assets aggregated in close walking distance, which makes it really attractive for these creative workers and idea workers to congregate into a community.

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Brendan Moffett

Brendan Moffett

Director of Strategic Marketing at Creative Sheffield in Sheffield, United Kingdom

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