Arts and creativity: A business and branding strategy for Lodz as a neoliberal city

Waldemar Cudny*, Roberta Comunian, Anita Wolaniuk

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


This article builds on the current critique of urban neoliberal strategies for global competition that make instrumental use of arts and creativity. This paper moves the debate forward by providing a more holistic overview of why cities exploit arts and creativity as a business development strategy. It translates the arguments often used in the literature on corporate investment in arts to consider how investment in arts and creativity at an urban level aim to affect not only promotion and marketing, but also influence public relations and corporate social responsibility, prompt new production and research and innovation and boost local human resources for the local economy. Cities invest in cultural development, arts, creative industries, festivals and other events to develop a range of opportunities and as an overall strategy to engage in global urban competition, behaving like companies who try to differentiate themselves in the market by investing in creativity and sponsoring arts events. To illustrate the similarity between urban policies and business strategies we use the case study of Łódź, a Polish post-industrial city, where creative industries have recently become leading urban development drivers.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102659
Publication statusPublished - May 2020


  • City branding
  • Creative city
  • Creative industries
  • Neoliberalism
  • Promotion
  • Łódź


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