Creative and Cultural Industries: The Music Sector

Music is one of the highest forms of expressions, one of the major Creative & Cultural industries and its wider sense (Music Industries) figures as one of the major international business sectors. Even during the financial crisis, the opportunities in music are sizeable.

During the Cultural Forum for Europe in Lisbon (September 2007), the European Music Office (EMO) reiterated how music is one of the highest expressions of Europe’s diversity, to be developed within the enlarged context of “cultural industries”.

In fact, during 2012 European Music Day Association (EMDA) General Assembly (Brussels- March), it was pointed out that there is an increasing organization of Cultural Seminars, Learning & training courses, Workshops or EU Learning Programmes while there is an explosion of events produced by small and middle sized companies in the field of music (events, shows, concerts and festivals) in each of the countries members or observers representative (Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Spain, Switzerland and United Kingdom).

Another positive fact coming from the field of the Record Industry, where digital sales shows that digital channels in Europe accounted for 29 per cent of overall recorded music revenues in the first half of 2011, up from 18 per cent in 2010. In 2010, the European digital music sector was worth nearly €750 million, up 22 per cent on 2009. In the first half of 2011, digital sales in Europe grew by a further 23 per cent – more than three times the global rate. (IFPI Digital report 2012).


Nevertheless, nowadays young artists require different skills to enter the music market, beyond pure artistic skills. So far, market demands can be met only through attendance to different courses separately provided by companies, training institutions etc., with little integration between curricula or initiatives.

That is why the EMO advocates increased involvement of SMEs to meet market requests: this can be done by combining music skills and other sectors, to try and give to artist’s complementary skills: business competencies, communication techniques, ICT related skills (digitalization, promotion through new channels), legal notions (e.g. IPR) and networking.

However, as the EMDA Members reiterated, partners and actions from various music sectors are still too unstructured, they are suffering from a lack of know-how in terms of current market needs and are note efficient in cooperation between them. The European Association of Conservatories and Music Schools (AEC) has also rightly emphasised many times the difficulty for the Vocational & Education Training sector, to meet demands from such an unstructured context.

This is probably why the EMO salutes the 2012 EC Rapporteur’s commitment to the implementation of measures to support sectoral studies, market data, statistical surveys and testing of business approaches to funding, distributing and monetising creation, as such measures will greatly help reinforcing market knowledge for music operators.

On the other end, during the XII° Mediterranean Forum for Communication & Entrepreneurship of Chania (Nov 2012) both Intercultural Euro-Mediterranean Center for Unesco, EURICCA (Foundation in Process of Creation) and EMD representatives, called for more collaboration between a variety of stakeholders (trainers, professionals, companies), more national and transnational networking, (local and National authorities etc.): initiatives to support exchange expertise, including mobility opportunities and involving different kind of stakeholders to support larger co-operation at European level.

The analysis above is also consistent with the most recent European policies in CREATIVITY, EDUCATION, ENTREPRENEURSHIP and VOCATIONAL EDUCATIONAL & TRAINING and specifically through the EU Commission Communication… (References on demand)


The partners of EURICCA’s Music Sector represent wide networks with complementary expertise, knowledge, skills and competencies and after years of cooperation between them, EURICCA initiative aims to initially connect the selection of their interrelated actions, different expertise and complementary networks.

The goal is to create new coalitions as to strengthen Music Sector educational and business activities related to the Music Industries.

This collaborative effort, will allow the gathering of substantial information consisting of point of views, suggestions and best practices from (amongst others) artists, formal and non-formal music teachers, publishers, entrepreneurs, journalists, musicologists, sound engineering colleges, radio stations, live venues and concert halls.

More on the abstract at the European Music Day Association website