Gilmore, A. Gledhill, D. & Rajković, I


Chapter 9 – Staying and making it in regional creative cities – visual arts graduates and infrastructures for professional development


Comunian, R and Gilmore, A, (eds.) Higher Education and the Creative Economy: Beyond the Creative campus, Routledge, 2016, 164-183

Institution of corresponding author

University of Manchester

Corresponding author

A Gilmore


Visual arts, professional development, creatives cities, arts education, placemaking

Catalogue entry

The researchers are interested in the relationships that have arisen between higher education and the creative economies of regional cities.

In this book chapter they argue that, despite the interest in the growth in creative capital that the presence of higher education can support, there is a fragmented and ill-equipped ecology for visual arts graduates planning to stay and work outside London. This study aims to address the lack of research into this topic, exploring the reasons why, drawing on qualitative research on visual artists working in Rogue Studios in Manchester,  regional creative economies has yet to counter the pull of the capital.

The study shows, while small-scale, that employability training or professional development is deployed in practice when there is a range of relevant opportunities, such as exhibitions, social networks and critical discourse. It indicates that come of the conditions that make the capital attractive could be replicated by developing links between curricula and locales, such as artists’ studios, that embody communities of practice and collectivist strategies.

You will find this article useful as a case study in visual arts education, and to provide evidence of conditions for successful placemaking, development of the creative economy and urban regeneration.