The Innovation Skill Set

Creative Skills and the Advanced Workforce in Milwaukee

CAM’s newly released report asserts that investing in developing the creative capacity of Milwaukee’s workforce is the most sustainable and effective way to build the region’s competitiveness in the fast-changing 21st century economy.

Analyzing data from the Department of Labor with a fresh approach, the research found that a discrete set of skills is important across a broad array of industries and occupations, not just in the traditionally “creative” sector.  These skills, which CAM is calling the “Innovative Skill Set,” is a combination of creative and analytical skills and includes such capacities as problem solving, creative thinking, conceiving multiple solutions for the same challenge.  Read the Executive Summary here or the entire report here.

Executive Summary

Entire Report

What defines Milwaukee’s regional creative industries?

Those organizations, individuals and companies whose products and services originate in artistic, cultural, creative and/or aesthetic content. The creative industries include 66,707 workers and comprise 4.2% of the regional workforce.

The numbers

In 2009 there were over 4100 individual enterprises; 85% are for profit and 11% are nonprofit. Overall growth in the creative industries enterprises workforce was 7% 2002 – 2007, and then declined 6% from 2007-2009.



Culture & Heritage

  • Museums
  • Libraries
  • Historic Sites


Built Environment
  • Architectural Services
  • Interior Design
  • Landscape Design
  • Architectural Woodwork/Ornamental Work
  • Printing
  • Graphic Design
  • Advertising
  • Industrial Design Services
  • Fashion and Special Product Design

Media & Film

  • Newspaper and Periodical Publishing
  • TV and Radio Broadcasting
  • Software Publishing
  • Motion Picture Production/Distribution
  • Music Publishing
  • Sound Recording Studios
  • Bookstores

Performing Arts

  • Theater Companies
  • Musical Groups and Artists
  • Promoters and Agents
  • Dance Companies
  • Musical Instrument Manufacturing
  • Musical Instrument and Supply Stores

Visual Arts & Crafts

  • Visual and Crafts Artists
  • Art Dealers, Photography Studios
  • Fine Arts Schools
  • Photographic and Art Supply Stores

Read the full report on Milwaukee region’s creative industry segments

View Creative Alliance Milwaukee 2012 Vision and Strategic Plan

Learn more about each segment:

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