Andy Pratt and Kate Oakley (visting Professor at City University) have written a paper about Brick Lane in East London as an innovation space. The paper is part of four case studies in a report Local Knowledge published by NESTA (The National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts).
This report shows how innovative economic activity can radically transform an area. Rather than trying to create the whole innovation system from scratch, they show that successful regeneration fundamentally involves making the most of existing assets, creating links and exploiting synergy between what is already in place, and then building upon these and plugging the gaps by drawing in resources from outside.
NESTA hopes that these four case studies will inspire and encourage policymakers to consider how local innovation policy can adapt to existing local assets and advantages, and to build the wider links necessary to supplement and make the most of these.
The Brick Lane case study certainly offers a new perspective on what has for many been a surprise hot spot in London’s cultural and creative economy. A copy of the report can be downloaded from here.