Managing the creative mess: handling wicked projects in the creative economy

2016-09-16T09:04:08Z (GMT) by Mikko Koria Daniel Graff
Creative industries are seen as the wealth creating engines in the post-industrial economies. There is a tendency to organize work in these industries into temporary organizations, projects; these initiatives cut across industries and network small and large actors and appear to be well suited to rapidly moving, fluid industries and business environments, both in developed and developing economies. That being said, projects seem to fail all too often and not achieve prescribed goals. Project scopes and budgets drift and timeframes are not met; in other cases projects fail due to rapidly changing circumstances making original aims redundant. In this paper we explore the management practices and theory of projects, arguing that the current practices are often ill suited to the needs of the creative economy, as they originate from industrial and technological paradigms no longer compatible with the reality of today. We note four strategic approaches to manage projects in creative business, proposing that experimental learning and selectionist processes can help to manage the ambiguity and the unknown unknowns built into the creative economy.