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Confucius Institute 曼彻斯特大学孔子学院

Cultural Industries in Shanghai

3 July 2018

About 50 academics, researchers and industry practitioners from UK and Shanghai met in London on 29 June to hold the dialogue of future collaborations in creative and cultural industries.

Image of Cultural Industries in Shanghai Symposium
Image of Cultural Industries in Shanghai Symposium

Shanghai has long positioned itself as the financial and commercial centre of China. In late 2017, Shanghai presented a master plan to develop the city into an ‘excellent global city’, which expects the cultural industries to contribute 18% to the overall GDP by 2030 and to become a cultural centre by 2035.

The development of the cultural industries will be market-led, focusing on film and TV, publishing, animation and gaming, as well as cultural facilities. Shanghai International Arts Festival, Shanghai International Film Festival and Electronic Sports-KPL are the three key events in the calendar. The top-down policy approach is supplemented by bottom-up community-led events such as Shanghai PRIDE Film Festival and Shanghai Queer Film Festival for LGBT communities.

About 50 academics, researchers and industry practitioners from UK and Shanghai met in London on 29 June 2018 to hold the dialogue of future collaborations in creative and cultural industries. Shanghai has a huge appetite for UK musicals and TV programmes and UK gaming companies see China as the largest market for its products. While the UK holds a number of Chinese film festivals, a discussion was held on how to introduce the Chinese arts such as Peking Opera with great appeal to audiences without losing its authenticity.

Karen Wang, Deputy Director of Manchester Confucius Institute shared her experiences gained from a book project back in 2011, when the institute worked with Comma Press, a Manchester-based independent publisher of short fiction. It was decided to publish 10 short stories based in 10 Chinese cities, which proved an effective way to introduce different styles of writing and authors of different backgrounds. Subsequently, the institute invited participating authors like Han Dong, Zhu Wen and Diao Dou to be part of Manchester Literature Festival and helped to promote Manchester as a hub for international cultural exchange.

The symposium ended with the launch of the book Cultural Industries in Shanghai: Policy and Planning inside a Global City, edited by Rong Yueming and Justin O’Connor and published by Intellect. The publication of the book itself is an example of collaboration between UK and China overcoming many challenges.

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