Ravensbourne University research shows three quarters of young people want to work in the creative industries, but few know how


Three quarters of young adults want to work in the UK’s creative industries, but career pathways aren’t clear, according to a study of 1,000 young adults commissioned by Ravensbourne University London.

Over the previous decade, the creative industries’ workforce has grown at almost five times the rate of the rest of the economy, which has led to significant skills gaps identified by successive government reports. However, young adults aren’t aware of the opportunities available to them, says Ravensbourne.

Less than 25% of young adults in Ravensbourne’s study were recommended this career path by school, or were given any guidance from school, college, or university as to how to get into the sector.

Andy Cook, vice chancellor at Ravensbourne University London, said: “The government’s Creative Sector Vision sets out a 2030 objective for stronger skills and careers pathways, but our creative industries need talent now. It’s important to let school leavers know that there are opportunities available in these sectors and to work with creative business to harness their talent.”

Nearly half (42%) wouldn’t consider a creative career due to the perception that it’s too hard to join the industry, and over a third (37%) are worried there won’t be many creative jobs in the future, due to AI.

Ravesbourne’s research says that what matters most to young adults about a career is that it pays well (32%), but many weren’t aware of lucrative roles in high demand in the industry including digital jobs such as VFX animator (42%) and UX designer (33%) or broadcast engineer (22%).

The top five industries young adults are interested in are TV and film (33%), design (28%), fashion (25%), music (23%) and games (22%).

The top five salaries for Ravensbourne undergraduates in 2021/2022 were:

OTT engineer (TV/film)                                   £55,000

Assistant VFX editor (TV/film)                        £41,600

Production assistant (TV/film)                        £41,600

Front end developer (Website design)           £40,000

Interactive designer (UX design)                    £36,000

Cook added: “We see a large number of people enter the industry wanting to become film directors or fashion designers but they are unaware of the huge number of creative roles available within and beyond the creative industries.

“The creative industries offer an attractive career for many young adults, yet this new research reveals clear barriers that are restricting them from joining. There is a clear disconnect between education, information and the needs of the industry that needs to be resolved. It’s time that we changed the old narrative about Mickey Mouse degrees, to champion the skills needed for one of the fastest growing sectors of our economy.”

IMAGE CREDIT: Alys Tomlinson