The mission pursued by the Bilbao Bizkaia Design Council (BiDC) is to promote design and the creative industries as factors of economic development and international projection for Bilbao and Bizkaia. Besides the Bilbao Local Authority and the Provincial Council of Bizkaia, the council involves 200 organisations and businesses that are committed to boosting the creative industries in the city and its province. Bilbao Metropoli-30 is also a member of BiDC, with the association’s Director General sitting on its board.
The aim is to foster the development and consolidation of these forward-looking sectors, which have a major potential for creating jobs, especially among young people, and help them to achieve an international cutting-edge positioning that will attract both business and talent.
Furthermore, by the hand of BiDC, Bilbao joined the UNESCO Creative Cities Network on 1 December 2014. This recognition has opened the doors to international cooperation with other cities that have identified creativity as a key factor for their sustainable economic development, providing support for the task of promoting design and the creative industries that Bilbao and Bizkaia are pursuing through BiDC. What’s more, the membership application was unanimously supported by the11 cities that were already part of the Network in the design category: Buenos Aires, Berlin, Montreal, Nagoya, Kobe, Shenzhen, Shanghai, Seoul, Saint-Etienne, Graz and Beijing.
Like its fellow members in the Network, Bilbao is committed to working together to develop design and the creative industries through the undertaking of joint projects, sharing best practices and organising North-South cooperation programmes, among others.
The UNESCO Creative Cities Network is currently formed by 116 Members from 54 countries covering seven creative fields: Crafts & Folk Art, Design, Film, Gastronomy, Literature, Music and Media Arts. Design is the foremost category in terms of numbers and the significance of its member cities, and the one that Bilbao has joined; other new members were Helsinki, Turin, Curitiba, and Dundee.
Membership of the Creative Cities Network is a “seal” of quality for the cities involved, which honoured in this way enhance their prestige, reputation and distinction. This makes it a key international platform for gaining competitiveness, opening up to new markets abroad, and nurturing growth.