FOLD is a communication platform about Latvian & foreign creative industries helping to discover, learn & collaborate. It focuses on design & design thinking.
Creation of the platform arose from the need to ensure a regular information flow about events & projects of creative industries (CI), & to display the success stories of creative industries of Latvia, facilitating an active dialogue between professionals and entrepreneurs of CI (this issue is addressed in the Cultural policy guidelines 2014-2020 “Creative Latvia”). It was initiated by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Latvia.
FOLD was created in 2013 based on a merger of previously existing long-standing self-initiated projects: “Plikums”, “DesignBlog”, which gathered news on interesting items in Latvian design, & a slightly younger “Fine Young Urbanists”, which wrote about urban planning and design.
The platform highlights the best in Latvian and foreign CI and encourages to get to the core of processes, acquire new knowledge, & learn to collaborate– it contains:
* in-depth articles and interviews
* documentary shorts about creative professionals
* catalogue of companies and independent professionals from CI
* calendar of CI events
* publications on new theoretical studies in CI
* featured work
* tips and recommendations from creative professionals (Naked Truths); etc.
Moreover, FOLD is not only a virtual platform but also an actual meeting place – it often organises educational events and participates in creative industries events organised by others. FOLD has also compiled and produced publication — a study on creative industries in the town of Cesis.
Creation costs: 28 905 EUR from the Ministry of Culture of Latvia & 4 285 EUR from the State Culture Capital Foundation (SCCF).
The annual management, administrative & content creation costs: ~ 30 000 EUR (provided by the Ministry of Culture); ~ 3 000 EUR (from SCCF, advertising, other projects).
Evidence of success
Constantly growing number of platform visitors & social media followers is showing that virtual platform for creative industries is demanded.
Average number of unique visitors per year: 65 000 – 75 000.
Average number of page views per year: 240 000 – 250 000.
Average number of views per day: 150 – 2 500.
FOLD is considered an important player in the creative industries scene of Latvia – it is the most comprehensive source of information on creative industries.
Small budget, a limited circle of good authors, creative industries professionals are passive to submit their work for publications.
Potential for learning or transfer
The concept of FOLD communication platform can be interesting for other European regions as it brings all creative industries together and facilitates collaboration among creative industries and business, and raise awareness of potential of creative industries. Moreover, it can be easily replicated in other geographical areas.
The success of platform is achieved by creating and selecting original, high quality content and publishing information regularly. Platform content is created not only by editorial board but also authors of articles, photographers, operators, Illustrators, translators, proof-readers (5-20 persons each year).
Considering that FOLD operates in English and Latvian, it has established cooperation with a language technology company Tilde to improve the machine translation technology for creative industries in Latvian language.
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