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Vivid Sydney Creativity- One of the Keys to Creating Jobs

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Vivid Sydney Creativity- One of the Keys to Creating Jobs

Contributed by Guest Writer David Bell

The Vivid Sydney Festival has become a Sydney annual event where creativity through lighting, ideas and music is showcased. For Sydneysiders, the festival provides an opportunity to be entertained, come together with family and friends and to see the city in a different and creative light. It attracts tourists from both interstate and overseas and injects money into the economy at a time of year where it normally would be sluggish.

The festival represents more than just pretty lighting and creative ideas. It provides us with an alternative economic activity in a city where traditional jobs are beginning to disappear. Over the past 30 years in Sydney, we have seen and continue to see manufacturing decline. This once was an important sector that allowed people to have job security, job identity and provided us with economic self reliance. The game has changed and we are in a process of restructuring our industries, our skills and creating jobs, new jobs. White collar workers are not immune from these changes. We have all witnessed call centre jobs moving offshore and more recently the move is on for banking analysts and IT jobs heading over to our Asian neighbours.

One area that we cannot outsource and can provide numerous job opportunities is the creation of major and minor cultural, sporting and social events. If we all think outside the traditional job box, we are no longer prisoner to traditional market failures. As I have witnessed thousands of tourists and Sydneysiders flocking to this Vivid Sydney festival over the years, it is obvious to me the economic opportunities are endless. As street vendors and food trucks are busy selling food to feed the masses, craft markets and local shops also take advantage of the numbers of people coming to the event. In Asia, the markets and the shopping centres remain open well into the evening to attract people into their main cities, this creates vibrancy unfortunately not seen in Australian cities.

Vivid Sydney has become so successful over the past few years that some roads in Sydney’s Central Business District have been closed to cars. This has meant usually busy roads jammed with cars have been taken over by thousands of pedestrians for the festival. With roads closed and people wandering the streets it takes on a party kind of atmosphere. Peoples voices can be heard once again normally drowned out by traffic noise.

Cities around the globe are redefining themselves as industries and jobs decline in areas that were traditionally the lifeblood of their cities. So we need some out of the box thinking if we are to adapt to a changing world. Sporting and cultural festivals, farmers markets, car free days and anything in between create new ideas, new opportunities and creating jobs.

In many famous cities there are amazing festivals that are well known around the world. Cannes for films and Venice has its world famous Biennale festival that covers Art, Architecture, Cinema, Music, Theatre and Dance.

In all cities, we need to take a closer look at new economic opportunities capable of creating and replacing lost jobs.

Vivid Sydney normally runs every year over a number of weeks around May and June.

David Bell is a finance professional who has interest in global energy systems and alternative economics.