“For three years, I took part in Escalator, thanks to which I have now opened CHAT, a successful and recognized art therapy center. CIKE is not just for people from the creative industry, but for everyone, because we can be creative in different ways. Nor is it just for the daredevils, because when I signed up, I was not courageous. I have gained courage and strength during Escalator ❤️.”
We are a non-profit organization called Creative Industry Košice, which deals with the support and development of the cultural and creative industry (CCI). We increase the quality of life in the city by developing its creative potential. We seek out and support talented individuals, offer educational, networking, and job opportunities, and thus contribute to sustainable urban development. We believe that collaboration and decision-making, based on a creative approach, bring the best solutions.
The history of CIKE begins in 2008 when the non-profit organization Košice 2013 – European Capital of Culture was founded to deliver one of the most important projects for the city of Košice and, after a successful candidacy, implement it. In September 2015, it was renamed Creative Industry Košice. The non-profit organization with a rich history in project management has taken on the agenda of developing international cooperation, professionalization programs, education, mobility, and artistic residencies.
- Mentoring and education
Mentoring and educational programs are focused on the professionalization of people working in the cultural and creative industry in Košice and Slovakia. The development of individuals takes place in various areas (design, project management, organizational development, business, community development, and others) based on the identification of the needs of the target group, especially through training, seminars, coaching, and mentoring.
Mobilities or residences represent an opportunity for both domestic and foreign applicants to work and create for a period of time in a new environment. International residency programs are intended for companies, entrepreneurs, artists, and creatives from Slovakia, while residences located in Košice are mainly for foreign artists. Mobilities support networking, the emergence of new collaborations and innovative solutions, the exchange of knowledge and experience, and incentives that can be used in other activities.
Home Residencies are for artists and creatives from Košice, who can participate directly from their homes as a response to the unexpected crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic and its impact on the cultural and creative industries.
- Creativity for Business
Cross-sectoral cooperation is the result of the intersection of art and common areas of business. Companies and artists work together to find solutions to problems that require a new perspective. The goal is that the innovation is created as a result of cooperation between the two sectors (co-creation), by involving the contracting authority itself in creating the final solution. Cross-sectoral projects have been implemented in healthcare, manufacturing, tourism, gastronomy, and the hotel industry.
Thanks to international projects, we develop, test, and verify new methods for the professionalization of the cultural and creative industry. By applying these methods in practice, it is possible to learn how to streamline processes, collaboration, and encourage creativity. Activities that are part of the implemented projects involve not only individuals and entities operating in the CCI but also other stakeholders such as the local citizens. This kind of participation is essential for the sustainable development of Košice.
CIKE manages and coordinates all activities related to the city’s membership in the UNESCO Creative Cities Network. We regularly represent Košice at meetings with foreign partners in the UNESCO cluster – Creative City of Media Arts. In cooperation with partners, it implements projects and raises awareness about innovations that arise at the intersection of digital technologies and art.
Every year, Creative Industry Košice organizes a week-long festival of media art, technology, and digital culture in Košice. The highlight of the festival is a conference that introduces top speakers from leading companies and organizations from all around the world. The festival is complemented by a rich educational and artistic program designed for all ages.
- Grant call
Since 2014, the grant call has been an instrument of the city of Košice, through which the cultural and creative industry is supported and developed. CIKE is the administrator of this call.
The project of The Invisible Hotel consists of five design rooms at five different addresses in our partner hotels. The design of each room tells a story closely related to the history of the city of Košice and reveals invisible spots in the city. The goal of the project is to support experiential tourism in the city and give visibility to local entrepreneurs.
An online magazine that promotes the city among Slovak and foreign readers. Therefore, the stories are not only about Košice, they are a model for any city, anywhere in the world. This year, the book Invisible Stories was published – it contains stories of 73 people who make the east of Slovakia a better place to live. It is a printed collection of this project.
“Thanks to the Escalator program, we have learned the difference between the work of an independent artist, the grant support, and the realization of the client’s needs. As a company, we had no cash flow, planning, strategy, mission, or vision. With help from mentors, we have learned the systematic steps that we gradually implemented into our practice. Later we started to professionally collaborate on projects like Carat or Photo Academy. We want to stay in Košice and help people.”
“We were one of the first participants in the Escalator program, which helped us with developing a business model and successfully opening the new Tabačka. We regularly participate in CIKE educational activities and conferences which help us with the development of our organization. I would recommend working with CIKE to anyone who wants to learn and is not afraid to innovate. I think that even the representatives of municipalities and state-established cultural or social institutions could benefit from CIKE programs.”
“We recommend CIKE to anyone who wants to learn something new and to those, who are interested in events in Košice and in the region. We work together on organizing various events, training sessions, and workshops. We have also been involved in the UNESCO Creative City of Media Arts initiative and we are co-organize the unique Art & Tech Days Conference. At the same time, we are networking and knowledge-sharing partners.”
“I have been working with CIKE since 2012 on projects such as Creative Industry Toolkit, Generation 2020, CO.Create, but also as an educational expert. Thanks to CIKE, I went on a month-long residency to Belgrade which inspired me to start my own business. My collaboration with CIKE has always brought me benefits, whether in the form of valuable knowledge or new contacts. CIKE has a great advantage mainly due to its contacts within Europe and so, cooperation with it can be a great starter for your career.”
“CIKE helps Košice by promoting it on an international level. We worked together on creating a cultural strategy, as well as key presentations and training events to support the media art zone. Thanks to this, we received the title of Košice – UNESCO Creative City of Media Arts and started preparing a new concept for Kunsthalle. They have a strong potential to influence the local climate of “creative industrialization”. I recommend CIKE to the young generation of entrepreneurs and creative communities.”