What is it about?

This article highlights how an individual's agency can bring about a lot of positive change in a creative hub. The research hones in on how the successful business of one resident artist entrepreneur in a rural creative hub can positively affect the whole hub, and other artists renting a studio in it. The focus of the analysis gives a voice to a dance entrepreneur's entrepreneurial activities, and how he takes a whole hub online and opens it to the world - during one of the darkest confined times in our recent lives, lockdown phases induced by COVID-19. Digital ways of creating community, places of interaction, is highlighted and explained. The article introduces the concept of entrepreneurial placemaking for the first time.

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Why is it important?

The research points out how careful managment of social relations and creative use of materials, space and technology can be combined to create a unique and great experience for service users. The elements of planning, facilitation and creative re-imagining are illustrated through a dance entrepreneur's successful business activities in a rural hub. This success has implications for policy makers for rural areas, Parish and District Councillors, and those owning or managing hubs and creative hubs: to manage tenant interactions, have regular meetings, develop ongoing relations with all tenants individually where possible, support regular events in the creative hub. These facilitations are important for maintaining good tenant/resident artist relationships beneficial for their and the hub business development.


I hope this article makes clear how valuable ethnographic research is, and how important the management of social relations is for online interactions. What might seem easy and straightforward, indeed, needed careful management and planning and organising to bring about a varied, dense, and rich experience. For me, as the researcher who collected the data, it was important to sense and feel the online experiences of the artists and the dance participants. Being part of the online dance sessions opened up so many perspectives on what was happening in the online interactions, explicitly and non-verbally. Doing the research was fun and exciting, as due to lockdown nothing else was possible and I had to focus on making the very best of the possibilities phone, email, social media and zoom offered.

Dr Inge Hill IJBR Editorial Review Board
The Open University

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Rural arts entrepreneurs’ placemaking – how ‘entrepreneurial placemaking’ explains rural creative hub evolution during COVID-19 lockdown, Local Economy The Journal of the Local Economy Policy Unit, March 2022, SAGE Publications,
DOI: 10.1177/02690942221083838.
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