• Greater Boston Creative Economy Network

    Welcome to the Greater Boston Creative Economy Network

    The Greater Boston Creative Economy Network (GBCEN) is part of the Massachusetts Creative Economy Network, a regional effort to accelerate the economic growth of the Commonwealth’s creative industries*.

    The City of Boston and the Massachusetts Artists Leaders Coalition (MALC) are the co-leads for the Greater Boston Creative Economy Network.

    Due to the “density of creative industries” in the Greater Boston area, the GBCEN is organized in two ways: (1) on a regional or macro level, (2) on a local or micro level.

    Currently the GBCEN is comprised of five municipalities: Boston, Braintree, Cambridge, Quincy, and Somerville. Each city/municipality is responsible for deciding how best to organize their creative economy within their geographic area. Representatives from each city meet with each other on a regular basis to coordinate their efforts.

    These five municipalities approach the creative economy from different angles depending on their priorities and city structure. “Creative economy” may fall under an economic development office, an arts office, or both. Some municipalities are quantifying or surveying how much of their economy is “creative” and how many people are part of the creative economy workforce in their region. This is the local or micro level way the GBCEN is organized.

    For the regional or macro approach, the two leads of this network, the City of Boston and MALC, work directly with greater Boston businesses and nonprofits that serve two or more of the municipalities currently in the network as well as those that serve cities/municipalities that are located in the Greater Boston geographic area, but are not currently members of the GBCEN.

    By coordinating through the Greater Boston Creative Economy Network, the participating cities, partners, and members strive to learn from each other, create effective policy, and work regionally.

    How to Connect:

    If you are geographically based in or are interested in what a specific city/municipality of the GBCEN is doing around the Creative Economy please see the contact list below:

    City of Boston:

    Point of contact in Boston for Creative Economy nonprofit organizations, arts organizations, and artists support/services/programs:

    Kara Elliott-Ortega
    Director of Planning and Policy- Mayor’s Office of Arts & Culture
    kara.elliott-ortega@boston.gov

    Point of contact in Boston for Creative Economy businesses, for profit ventures, commercial sector, self employed** and business development:

    Abby Furey
    Creative Economy Industry Manager & Neighborhood Business Manager
    Mayor’s Office of Economic Development
    abby.furey@boston.gov

    Town of Braintree:

    Point of contact in Braintree for Creative Economy nonprofit organizations, arts organizations, and artists support/services/programs, Creative Economy businesses, for profit ventures, commercial sector, self employed** and business development:

    Christine Stickney
    Director, Office of Planning and Community Development
    Conservation Division
    cstickney@braintreema.gov

    City of Cambridge:

    Point of contact in Cambridge for Creative Economy nonprofit organizations, arts organizations, and artists support/services/programs:

    Jason Weeks
    Executive Director, Cambridge Arts Council
    617-349-4383
    jweeks@cambridgema.gov

    Point of contact in Cambridge for Creative Economy businesses, for-profit ventures, commercial sector, self employed** and business development:

    Pardis Saffari
    Senior Economic Development Specialist
    Economic Development Division of Cambridge Community Development Department
    617-349-4654
    psaffari@cambridgema.gov

    City of Qunicy:

    Point of contact in Quincy for Creative Economy nonprofit organizations, arts organizations, and artists support/services/programs, Creative Economy businesses, for-profit ventures, commercial sector, self employed** and business development

    Margaret Laforest
    Vice President of Tourism
    Discover Quincy
    Quincy Chamber of Commerce
    617-639-1117
    mlaforest@thequincychamber.com

    City of Somerville:

    Point of contact in Somerville for Creative Economy nonprofit organizations, arts organizations, and artists support/services/programs:

    Gregory Jenkins
    Director of Arts Council

    gjenkins@somervillema.gov

    Point of contact in Somerville for Creative Economy businesses, for-profit ventures, commercial sector, self employed** and business development:

    Sunayana Thomas
    Senior Planner, Economic Development, OSPCD
    sthomas@somervillema.gov

    For Cities or Towns not currently part of the GBCEN:

    For Greater Boston cities or towns who are not currently part of the GBCEN and want join or learn more about the network, please contact the GBCEN by email:
    GreaterBostonCEN@gmail.com

    For Greater Boston Businesses or Nonprofits:

    For Greater Boston businesses or nonprofits that serve two or more of the municipalities currently in the GBCEN network or are based in a Greater Boston city or municipality that is not currently part of the GBCEN and want to learn more about the GBCEN please email:
    GreaterBostonCEN@gmail.com

    For Greater Boston businesses or nonprofits based in Boston, Braintree, Cambridge, Quincy or Somerville, please reach out directly to the contacts listed for that city/town.

    General information about the GBCEN:

    For general information about the MA Creative Economy Network:
    http://www.mass.gov/hed/economic/industries/creative/createmass.html

    For general inquires about the Greater Boston Creative Economy Network:
    GreaterBostonCEN@gmail.com 

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    *To see a definition of the creative industries:
    http://www.mass.gov/hed/economic/industries/creative/createmass.html

    **Self-Employed can also include individual artists who distribute/sell their work in non-art venues/settings or commercial/retail settings (some examples – fashion designers, graphic designers, craft artists that sell/distribute their work in for-profit stores, etc.)