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The continued growth of the arts sector and other service industries demands creativity and innovation; this innovation often emerges from clusters of creative people, whether in Silicon Valley, a major metropolis like Paris, or in smaller clusters around universities and other cultural institutions. Today’s economic dynamism therefore shares many common features with artistic output over the course of history. Understanding what fosters and drives creative achievement means understanding what fosters and drives economic success today. For this reason, the economic history of art and culture has become more important in the broader field d and and is poised to become increasingly significant. HEDG is at the forefront of this growth.

Work conducted at HEDG provides novel insights related to creativity and innovation by touching among others, on urban economics (creative clusters), labour economics (especially migration of creative people) and education (teachers’ influence). Our research has documented some of the historical incidence, development and long-term importance of cultural heritage and artistic activity in Europe. We have studied the extent of migration and geographic concentration of creative people (music composers and others), the impact of geographic clustering on creative production, the cost of peer-interaction in terms of adverse health effects and the influence of war on conflict-induced migration among others.

SDU is an established research center in cultural economics, ranked 33rd out of 1160 institutions globally (RePEc Ideas Ranking February 2020) and is actively shaping cultural policy at EU level and beyond. SDU is co-founder of, a platform to disseminate cultural economics research to the research community, policy makers, and the wider public. SDU has been involved in the Association of Cultural Economics International and organizes the European Workshop of Applied Cultural Economics since 2013. The international network has been strengthened through various externally funded projects, including RICHES (EU FP7), PUCK (EU Culture Programme) and Origins of Creativity (DFF).

Please address queries to the researcher responsible for this area: Karol  Jan Borowiecki

Other HEDG researchers who have worked or are working on this topic are:
Anthony Wray 
Francesco Cinnirella
Giovanni Mellace
Sara Beth Mitchell 

PhD student:
Caterina Mauri


Last Updated 11.11.2021