The creative and cultural industries are incredibly important in the UK - not just for our economy but also because of the social and cultural capital that they create.  Whether it be film, electronic games, music, fashion, advertising, design, art or heritage, these activities permeate our lives and help shape the world we live in.  The UK's creative and cultural industries are amongst the most influential and successful in the world. However, research into the creative industries is in its infancy, compared to other sectors. 

Robust evidence and research is particularly valuable in young, dynamic and growing sectors.  But researching the creative and cultural industries throws up numerous methodological challenges which must be overcome if meaningful insight is to be produced.  The three major issues are;

TBR has a wealth of research experience in the creative industries and in associated sectors such as heritage and sport. We have developed bespoke analysis and data to provide more accurate evidence on the performance of the sector than is available through standard national statistics. Our analyses are not constrained to using SIC codes to map creative and cultural activity and we are experts in capturing data on the ‘hard-to-reach’ elements of the sector.  We have the solutions and we have applied them widely over the last 10 years to generate new intelligence on the UK's creative, cultural and sports industries.

The key research services that we offer within our creative research domain are;


TBR has a strong track record of working across the UK creative and cultural agenda and has been at the forefront of creative industries research for a number of years. We have made key contributions to the national body of work through projects for clients such as DCMS, the CASE programme, Creative & Cultural Skills, Arts Council England, MLA, English Heritage, Skillset, local authorities and a host of organisations operating within the sector such as Generator.  We have also worked extensively in sports research and development for clients such as Sport England and a number of regional development agencies.


Types of projects

Types of projects

TBR’s expertise in researching the creative sector has expanded as we have developed and deployed innovative research solutions in response to complex issues. Some examples of the types of project we deliver in our creative domain are listed below:  

Sector mapping to support strategic development

  1. Creative & Cultural Skills Creative Blueprint (see final output here)
  2. Creative Industries Mapping in local authorities, regions or cities.
  3. Mapping of hard to define or never previously mapped groups such as volunteers or nascent sectors.

Economic and demographic profiling and impact

  1. Creative & Cultural Skills Creative Blueprint (see final output here)
  2. Sport England Local Sport Profiles (see the final output on Sport England’s website here)
  3. DCMS Regional Insights (see the final output on the DCMS website here)
  4. Creative audits for different Local Authorities, understanding the size and composition of the creative industries

Niche/unique activity exploration

  1. Niche sector analysis including hard to investigate sectors like crafts and advertising.
  2. The creation of mapping tools to assist local authority initiatives and planning.
  3. Investigating Third Age Entrepreneurs and their economic contribution.

Thematic research

  1. 'Women in Leadership' research, understanding the role of gender in the sector.
  2. Investigating the economic contribution of sole traders to local areas.


Case Studies

We have a number of Case Studies which are available to download (.pdf) for you to understand the work we engage in, these include:

Much of our work in our other areas of expertise can be applied to research in the creative sector - view our other pages to read more about our research in those areas:  




Contact us

Contact Fiona Tuck to find out more about our research and consultancy services in the creative and cultural industries.

Get in touch with us if you have a query or would like more information on TBR and our work.

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