Twenty Creative Cities

Sara Haidey

In the winter of 2019, Mount Royal University’s Dr. Catherine Pearl taught a course in civic innovation called Vivacity at Calgary’s Central Library.

Including students from Mount Royal University, University of Calgary, and Ambrose University, the challenge focused on how we can contribute to creating a vibrant and sustainable creative and cultural economy in the city of Calgary.

Throughout, the students explored how we might embed the arts in our city’s DNA.

One of the assignments was to examine five exemplar cities, anywhere in the world, regarding their creative and cultural economy, its role and contribution to city building and citizen engagement. The purpose of the assignment was to provide an opportunity for the students to reflect on where and how the cultural and creative economy intersects with a city’s DNA.

Impressed with the students’ work on this project, Calgary Arts Development sponsored a final report to share with the broader community. The following report was collated and edited by Sara Haidey. We would like to thank and acknowledge the contributions from Amaree Blake, Alexandria Campbell, Raquel Chamberlain, McKenna Chudiak, Brendan Chuckmala, Matthew Foster, Sara Haidey, Kendra Hudson, Xander Jensen, Willam Kelly, Amanda Morton, Kolten Nelson, Joanna Onison, Lauren Piwek, Dave Serrao, Hanna Thorsen, and Chelsea Wolfe.

This course will be offered once again from January to April 2020, Wednesdays from 2:30 to 5:30pm, at the Central Library. It is open to Calgary post-secondary students, regardless of discipline. Learn more at

A screen cap from the Twenty Creative Cities report collated and edited by Sara Haidey

View the Report Online