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OUR PUBLICATIONS > “Creativity is vital in shaping our futures… families are fundamental in developing it”: Making of Me

OUR PUBLICATIONS > “Creativity is vital in shaping our futures… families are fundamental in developing it”: Making of Me

CCE Research

“Creativity is vital in shaping our futures… families are fundamental in developing it”: Making of Me


October 1, 2009

Author: Jen Lexmond and Shelagh Wright

Institution: Demos

Full reference: Lexmond, J & Wright, S. (2009). “Creativity is vital in shaping our futures – families are fundamental in developing it”: Making of Me. Demos. London

Summary of key findings

This paper looks at how families could be better supported and how we might get more from existing investments in creative and cultural engagement and what should be done as a stimulant for the kinds of ideas we need.

The terms creativity and culture are acknowledged as tricky to define, but the domains they describe, however disputed, are widely recognized as crucial to our futures. Many commentators and researchers have argued that creativity and culture make more prosperous and cohesive societies and they provide accounts of how talent flows and grows. What has been less well understood is how to nurture that talent and potential in the first place. The role of families is fundamental.

Developmental Psychology points towards the development of soft skills, creativity, application and social skills, occurring in early years of a child’s life making the family a key site for cultural and creative development. Continued support for families, in this way, as seen in initiatives such as Sure Start, is vital.

Research Questions & Methodology

How do we make more of ourselves and create good and sustainable livelihoods? Can our families make this more likely?

Looking at how we can make more of ourselves and create good and sustainable livelihoods this paper proposes there are three key components: Know How (the core creative capabilities in early development); Know What (cultural participation, knowledge and production), and Know Who (social capital and networks for development).

This paper also includes reflections and input from the Demos roundtable discussion on 21 October 2009.

Go to the journal article.