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Study Group on Art and the Economy and Society to Be Established

June 27, 2022

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) has established the Study Group on Art and the Economy and Society: Developing New Policies for the Creative Industries, to confirm the economic and industrial significance art holds; increase investments and demand in the field of art; and construct a circular ecosystem for art, and the economy and society.

1. Purpose

As we are truly immersed in an era where economies and societies are maturing, becoming more global, digitalizing, and seeing their sources of value diversified, it is becoming difficult to differentiate not only companies but also countries (or regions) in terms of cost and function alone. Countries and regions are starting to demand more art and design—representing human creativity and sensibility, irreplaceable by machines or AI—as the core aspect of value creation for their unique cultures.
Presently, however, Japan has one of the smallest art markets and one of the lowest GDP per capita in the cultural sector of all developed countries. There seems to be a gap between cultural arts and the actual economy and society.
However, there are signs that the environment surrounding art in Japan is changing. First, research and efforts focused on the various functions and applications of art have been advancing in recent years, and it has been confirmed that art is being utilized in a wider variety of ways. Emerging new technologies and service models, mostly in the digital field, are also increasing the possibility of more investments and demand in the art field than ever before.
That being said, increased investment and demand in creative industries, and particularly art, could transform the industrial structure in the medium to long term, and digitalization could help stop the labor market from polarizing. As art is part of what creates each company and country (or region)'s unique culture, this could also likely capture sustainable overseas demand in the future.
At the recent, 7th meeting of the Industrial Structure Council's Committee on New Axial Economic and Industrial Policies, attendees who were focused on these perspectives also pointed out that cultural, economic, and industrial policies need to be driven forward.
Thus, this study group will discuss a proper gap between art and the economy and society that would allow art and the creative industries around it to flourish. In doing so, they will review and confirm how to utilize art and creative industries to better solve problems and foster economic development in the actual economy and society, their potential to capture overseas demand, and their economic and industrial significance. Based on that, they will consider what measures are needed to construct a circular ecosystem for cultural arts, the economy, and society.

2. Further details

First meeting: Thursday, June 30
Art and Business / Industry
Meetings on other themes (tentative) will then be held from early July to early August.
Art and Community / The Public
Art and Distribution / Consumption
Art and Technology

Distributed materials and summaries of the minutes will be posted on this page  (in Japanese) after the meetings.

Division in Charge

Cool Japan Policy Division, Commerce and Service Industry Policy Group
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