nesta, creative hubs

British Council

Sunday 03 September 2017 - 12:00 to Friday 08 September 2017 - 19:00
Chekhov APi Art-residence, Chekhov

British Council together with innovation foundation Nesta and Chekhov APi creative residence are excited to announce an open call for the autumn school «Creative Enterprise Russia: Driving the economy through creative hubs» which will take part on 3-8 September 2017.

For many years the British Council, together with leading organisations for cultural management, has been facilitating workshops for specialists from all over the world. Creative economy and creative hubs as its main drivers has been the focus of the UK and European policies for a while, and now they are becoming fast-growing industry in Russia as well, boosting creative economy sector.

Science residencies, coworkings and art-clusters unite professionals from different fields and comprise unique creative community. Anticafe format (a cafe where you only pay for the time you spent there) first appeared in Russia and now is an international franchise.  

Building on the momentum around the movement, we invite leaders and managers of creative hubs across the UK and Europe to take part in an intensive four-day seminar in creative residence just outside Moscow to meet with their peers from all over Russia, learn, share, contribute and participate in a flourishing cross-European network.


Taking place in the creative atmosphere of a countryside residence outside Moscow, 'The Creative Enterprise Russia: Hubs' is a four-day practical workshop that equips creative entrepreneurs with the tools and knowledge they need to succeed.

Expert facilitator from the UK, as well as a Russian curator, provide face-to-face support to help participants explore business concepts, further develop their business proposition, and refine their business model that suits their hopes and ambitions, all in a peer-led environment as part of a global network of Russian and European creative hubs. 

This interactive programme has been developed by Nesta, the UK’s innovation foundation, and is delivered in partnership with the British Council. It brings Nesta’s Creative Enterprise Toolkit to life, and uses a mixture practical exercises, tried and tested design thinking methods, and activities that have been designed specifically for creative entrepreneurs. 

Through the four days, participants explore key ways to:

  • understand the building blocks that describe and shape their business
  • identify and better understand hub residents and audience, and explore how the business will function and grow
  • visualise the main components of the business and bring together the key elements of a constantly evolving business canvas
  • explore challenges specific to creative hubs and learn from one another.

Among additional activities are lectures, showcases and discussions with representatives of Russian and foreign creative hubs managers.You can find a detailed programme outline below.

Key information for applicants

The workshop is based on two methodologies: the Creative Enterprise Programme – a three-day programme developed by Nesta and the British Council which covers all the stages of setting up your own creative enterprise, and Creative HubKit – a manual written in collaboration with Creative Edinburgh and Creative Dundee, analysing the phenomena of creative hubs in Great Britain.

To take part in the programme please complete the application form in English and submit it by 23 July 2017.

Please note that the number of participants is limited and the applicants will be shortlisted. The successful candidates will be contacted after 27 July.

By submitting the application you confirm that:

  • you are a founder or manager of a creative hub – residence, co-working or art-cluster uniting creative community (Do you want to make sure that your project is a creative hub? Read on it here)
  • your project is an actively developing hub with its own audience, venue and online presence (website and/or page in social networks)
  • you are over 18 years old
  • you are an Upper-Intermediate or Advanced English speaker.

The workshop will be in English without translation.

British Council provides successful candidates from the UK, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Turkey, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, and Serbia with a unique opportunity to attend the workshop in Russia, with their travel expenses and participation fee fully covered.

All the participants will be provided with: 

  • all workshop materials
  • accommodation in Chekhov APi from 3 to 8 September 2017
  • three-day meals
  • transfer from Moscow to the venue and back.


Catherine Docherty – Nesta Creative Enterprise Programme associate, an experienced researcher, facilitator and management consultant.

Read more

Yan Yarmoshchuk – Russian curator, consultant and specialist in space redevelopment and revitalization, director of FlaconX.

Read more



Nesta is a global innovation foundation that backs new ideas to tackle the big challenges of our time.  Nesta uses its knowledge, networks, funding and skills - working in partnership with others, including governments, businesses and charities. It is a UK charity that works all over the world, supported by a financial endowment.


Scientific and creative residence Chekhov#APi is a space for productive communication where representatives of business, new IT industries, people of science, sports, public figures and humanities meet. It is a massive area with guesthouses, farm, forest and river; a place for work, reflection, communication and smart entertainment; a platform for business, educational and research sessions. Moreover, it’s an art park with author's architecture and unique digital objects.