Culture shock: COVID-19 and the cultural and creative sectors

Culture shock: COVID-19 and the cultural and creative sectors
Ekaterina Travkina and Pier Luigi Sacco

Pier Luigi Sacco, member of the MESOC's External Advisory Board, wrote with Ekaterina Travkina a note about policy recommendations for cultural and creative sectors in light of COVID-19 and its consequences. This article is published in The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), an international organisation that works to build better policies for better lives, to shape policies that foster prosperity, equality, opportunity and well-being for all. 

This article analyses the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the creative and cultural sectors and its consequences on the cities and regions and observes the national and sub-national policy responses and the measures by private, non-profit and philanthropic organisations to support the CCS.  


Cultural and creative sectors are important in their own right in terms of their economic footprint and employment. They also spur innovation across the economy, as well as contribute to numerous other channels for positive social impact (well-being and health, education, inclusion, urban regeneration, etc.). They are among the hardest hit by the pandemic, with large cities often containing the greatest share of jobs at risk. The dynamics vary across sub-sectors, with venue-based activities and the related supply chains most affected. Policies to support firms and workers during the pandemic can be ill-adapted to the non-traditional business models and forms of employment in the sector. In addition to short-term support for artists and firms, which comes from both the public and private sector, policies can also leverage the economic and social impacts of culture in their broader recovery packages and efforts to transform local economies.

To read the article