The computer games industry can be regarded, in many ways, as a paradigmatic sector of the creative economy. It has been firmly on the policy agenda in the United Kingdom since New Labour’s election in 1997 and, in particular, since 1998 with the inclusion of digital games as a sub-sector of creative industries as defined by the Creative Industries Task Force. Its high public profile has been justified by claims of economic weight and potential externalities (DCMS, 2012a; TIGA, 2012). As well as a belief that the sector can provide direct benefits to the economy, it is suggested that it also provides additional advantages through a multiplier effect and can even ameliorate the impact of the recent recession. In terms of policy interventions aimed at fostering growth within the computer games industry, many efforts have taken a spatially targeted focus including the funding and development of hubs and clusters. The rationale for this attention rests on a belief that the sector has a particular spatial logic in common with the wider creative industries, which preferences proximity and is subject to advantages of agglomeration. Despite a paucity of empirical research specifically reviewing the spatial rationale of the computer games sector, significant work has been undertaken to identify the location patterns within the wider creative economy. The existing research suggests that the creative industries have a dominant spatial rationale which tends to favour co-location, and that large metropolitan centres act as natural hubs of activity, but there remain gaps in the evidence base.
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- Problematizing a Homogeneous Spatial Logic for the Creative Industries: The Case of the Digital Games Industry
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