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City of Boston issues RFP for Creative Industries Workforce Development Program


To create pipeline for Boston residents to jobs in the creative industries

BOSTON - Monday, August 21, 2017 - Mayor Martin J. Walsh today announced the City of Boston has issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) for a consultant to design and implement a Creative Industries workforce development program within the Mayor's Office of Workforce Development (OWD). The initiative is a joint venture between OWD, Emerson College and the Massachusetts College of Art and Design (MassArt) and will identify how to create opportunities for Boston residents to gain employment in the Creative Industries.

The RFP builds off of a core component of Mayor Martin J. Walsh's Boston Creates Cultural Plan to prioritize, coordinate, and align public and private resources to strengthen the City of Boston's creative capital over the long term. The City of Boston will provide $75,000 in funding for the execution of this feasibility study.

"In order to support and strengthen our creative industries sector, and to work to diversify its ranks, we must ensure that our young people and adults can access pathways to the careers where there is a demand," said Mayor Walsh. "I thank Emerson and MassArt for their partnership on this important initiative that will bring together public and private resources to create more opportunities for our residents."

"Emerson College is excited about the possibilities and opportunities this new partnership with the City of Boston could bring to area residents and the local creative economy," said Ruthanne Madsen, Vice President for Enrollment Management at Emerson College. "The findings of the study could assist us in identifying new educational pathways and programming to support student access, community engagement, and cultural enrichment."
"This partnership enables MassArt to better achieve our mission -- to prepare students from diverse backgrounds to participate in the creative economy," said Daniel Serig, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs at MassArt. "Boston students need and deserve access to these careers that continue to grow and expand."
The research and/or consultant team chosen will conduct a feasibility assessment of higher education and training programs that provide career pathways in the creative economy sector. This assessment will investigate programs already in operation as well as programs in the pipeline for future development, particularly as it relates to Emerson College and MassArt. The selected team will synthesize the literature and existing research available on the topic of the creative economy labor market with educational programming in order to ascertain the pathways which provide immediate access to a defined career path.
The report will be used to increase knowledge within Boston Public Schools, to create more opportunities for Boston's young people to access careers in the creative economy.
In a recent report, the Boston Planning & Development Agency found that creative employment in 2014 totaled 29,762 jobs in business establishments - this is 5.4 percent of Boston's total private sector payroll employment. An additional 6,483 people were self-employed in the creative industries. Including this self-employment measure, Boston's Creative Economy totals 36,254 workers. The 29,762 workers on payrolls across Boston took home over 2.4 billion dollars combined, averaging $81,179 in annual wages.  

The RFP was released on Monday, August 21 and proposals are due by September 21 at 5 p.m.

About Boston Creates

In June 2016, Mayor Walsh announced the Boston Creates Cultural Plan, a ten-year initiative that will align public and private resources to strengthen cultural vitality over the long-term, and weave arts and culture into the fabric of everyday life.  Cities with high levels of creative capital encourage, reward and integrate imaginative thinking into all aspects of community life. Boston wants to better understand the creative capital of Boston and develop a plan that will prioritize, coordinate, and align public and private resources to strengthen this creative capital over the long term.

Boston Creates helped inform the final Imagine Boston 2030 plan, Boston's first citywide plan in over 50 years. Imagine Boston 2030, which has been underway since fall of 2015 and has been shaped by the input of over 15,000 residents of Boston, is a comprehensive vision to boost quality of life, equity and resilience in every neighborhood across the city. The plan outlines Boston's current economic and population boom, and, while that growth presents challenges, it also presents an opportunity to provide access to economic mobility and opportunity. It also demonstrates avenues for quality of life improvements while increasing affordability and resiliency. Imagine Boston 2030 identifies major initiatives to expand opportunity for all Bostonians, support a vibrant economy, enhance quality of life, and prepare for climate change.
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