Creating a local contents industryCultural industry refers to the businesses of contents planned and programmed by creative talents that provide new cultural values to the consumers. Manufacturing industry valued faster production of goods in large volume. But in cultural industry, it is important to create new value by integrating cultural resources with new technologies and other industries.
Regions can use history, figures, traditional cultures, sceneries, folklore and cultural assets to establish cultural identity and boost local economies. Also, when the local economy grows, it would positively affect balanced development of the nation.
According to the 2014 Contents Industry White Paper published last year, Korea’s contents industry revenue is over 90 trillion won (79.1 billion), and 85.3 percent is concentrated in Seoul and Gyeonggi Province. Six other metropolitan cities make up 8.6 percent, and the sum of the eight provinces except for Gyeonggi Province is only 6.1 percent of the total revenue.
Lately, cultural activities of the disadvantaged are promoted. The National Assembly ratified UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions in 2010, and the Act on the Protection and Promotion of Cultural Diversity has been legislated. The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and local government bodies are promoting policies to protect cultural diversity. In 2013, the Basic Act on Culture was legislated to improve the “quality of life” for Koreans, resolving cultural gap between regions and expanding opportunities to appreciate culture. Moreover, in 2014, the Regional Culture Promotion Act was enacted to reduce cultural gap between regions and develop original cultures for each region.
Based on these laws, the Korea Creative Contents Agency collaborates with local organizations to establish local cultural foundations and pursue balanced development and creation of local value through culture in projects like development of local specialties and cultural contents, local Contents Korea Lab and Local Story Lab. When the local contents are developed and distributed in conjunction with government’s culture and creation convergence belt, deal cultural ecosystems can be established.
Now, regions need to take an initiative in contents industry development. Each region should develop outstanding contents from various cultural resources, collaborate with other regions and other industries and create a local contents industry eco-system for sustainable development and overseas expansion. The efforts would not only contribute to regional growth but also be the foundation for national growth in the creative economy era, establishment of Korea’s cultural identity and basis to exchange Korea’s cultural values with people around the world.