Cultural and Creative Industries (CCIs) have emerged as vital components of the global creative economy. These industries not only have an important economic impact, but they also foster social cohesion, promote innovation, and provide employment opportunities. Moreover, CCIs play a crucial role in shaping and preserving the cultural identity and values of societies.

From July 11th to 13th, the Spanish Presidency of the Council of the European Union organized a European conference in Barcelona to explore how CCIs contribute to improving people’s quality of life through the integration of culture and science. MediaFutures took the stage during the roundtable titled “How to involve communities, cities, and citizens to innovate better: Experience and knowledge from science, policies, and creative and cultural industries.”

Julià Vicens from Eurecat presented different approaches to foster citizen and community engagement in the projects that MediaFutures has been supporting. Projects like “Critical Climate Machine” which combines AI models, a card game called “The Refutation Game,” and a sonification artwork. Another project called “Soft Evidence” raised awareness about the misuse of data technologies by building deepfakes using generative AI. “The More, the Better” engages representatives of the 100 most widely used languages on the internet, and “Self“, a community science project focused on understanding the bodies and experiences of underrepresented communities in health and research, specifically the queer community. We discussed the implications of Generative AI, particularly ethical considerations such as privacy protection, copyright or biases, for boosting a responsible and inclusive use of these technologies.

Marc Hernández, CEO of La Tempesta, a startup that was part of the support program in the “Start meets Artist” track along with the artistic duo Mar and Varvara, introduced Time Lapse Migration, showcasing the unique collaboration between startups and artists and illustrating the transformative potential of such collaborations within MediaFutures. The roundtable, moderated by Ángela Martínez-Carrasco (CERV & Creative Europe/Culture programs), was completed with two other projects: TRACTION (Opera co-creation for Social Transformation), with Mikel Zorrilla and Irene Calvis, and NETCO (Network of Cities for Collaborative Housing), with Maite Arrondo.

The event aimed to showcase innovative and sustainable European projects and initiatives in the cultural and creative industries (CCIs), aligning with the principles of the New European Bauhaus (NEB) initiative. The conference seeks to demonstrate the social and innovative drivers of CCIs by emphasizing accessibility, affordability and social commitment.