Oregon Creative Industries

A unifying voice for Oregon’s Creative Economy; providing networking, promotion and advocacy.

VISION: Develop and maintain a trade association as a statewide public-private alliance to support Oregon’s creative industries through networking, promotion and advocacy; pooling the strengths and resources of a variety of creative industries-related organizations in order to increase business opportunities and revenue for the sector.

MISSION: Facilitate economic development for Oregon’s creative industries through advocacy, promotion and networking.


Oregon Creative Industries, Inc. (dba Oregon Creative Industries) is registered as an Oregon non-profit corporation and is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors.  We are in the process of applying for 501(c)(6) tax-exempt status with the IRS.


Oregon’s Manufacturing, Wine and Tourism industries enjoy crucial statewide and national promotion by way of their own organizing & networking consortiums that provide them with financial, legal, marketing and other advantages. Oregon Creative Industries (OCI) is a gateway for our combined Creative Industries to access these same benefits by facilitating connections and collaboration among currently disparate associations, unstructured networks and other organizations.

Defining Creative Industries

We are using the DCMS (UK) based Wikipedia definition of creative industries that refers to “those industries which have their origin in individual creativity, skill and talent and which have a potential for wealth and job creation through the generation and exploitation of intellectual property”.  The Artists for the Arts definition is also referenced.   This part of Oregon’s economy includes:

  • Advertising
  • Architecture
  • Arts and Antique Markets
  • Communications
  • Crafts
  • Design (interior, graphic, interactive, merchandising, etc.)
  • Designer Fashion
  • Digital Media, Film/Video Production,
    Multimedia Design, Music Production, TV
    & Radio
  • Graphic Arts
  • Industrial Design
  • Marketing
  • Photography
  • Publishing
  • Software, computer games and other
    interactive applications
  • Visual and Performing Arts (theater, music,
    dance, etc)

Workforce Metrics

Americans for the Arts describes Creative Industries as the high-octane fuel that drives the “information economy,” the fastest growing segment of the nation’s economy.  That same organization estimated Oregon’s Creative Industries employment base at 39,845 people in 2008.  However, that study includes only arts-related industries while the broader DCMS/world definition that we use includes software, which had an estimated workforce of  52,000 in 2006.  So according to these numbers the Creative Industries sector employs approximately 91,845 people.

In the DCMS/ Wikipedia definitions, Creative Industries and Creative Economy are synonymous terms.

Oregon’s established and burgeoning Creative Industries provide our enterprising economy with:

  • A growing international identity
  • Sustainable, high-wage careers
  • Community-owned cultural values
  • National and international commerce
  • Innovation
  • Creative vitality

Origins and Objectives

First discussed in August of 2008 at the first Cre8Camp Portland, and helped along by the re-birth of the Portland Creative Conference and related activities, OCI is poised to pick up where the significant efforts of The Industry Council in the mid-90’s and later the Oregon Creative Services Alliance left off (while avoiding the mistakes of the past) and helping to unify the voice for all of the state’s creative industries structured associations, unstructured networks, businesses, and individuals.  To help our Creative Economy thrive, OCI plans to develop a public-private partnership to support Creative Industries by:

  • fostering connections between discreet networks, both structured (e.g. associations) and unstructured
  • facilitating organizational development efforts
  • marketing Portland and Oregon as a creative hub
  • nurturing statewide talent
  • supporting inter-disciplinary events
  • advocating for an improved business climate
  • hosting a central Web-based hub

These organizational efforts are critical to business development and growth within our Creative Industries, connecting new potential business partners, introducing new prospects to product & service providers and attracting crucial out of state business to Oregon.


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