Like many other industries across the world, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a crisis in the creative and cultural sector that is largely composed of small-medium sized businesses and brands, artists, designers, and self-employed creatives.

An open call took place April 2-4, which invited stakeholders across different industries to work collectively to respond to the immediate challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and ideate possible solutions to support the region's cultural industries. Followed by the Dubai IDEATHON taking place April 7-8, this initiative was launched by Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, in collaboration with the Art Dubai Group, that for the past 14 years has launched some of the region's most successful cultural events and programmes including Art Dubai, Dubai Design Week and the Global Grad Show.

Everyone was invited to submit ideas to address challenges, propose solutions to reframe the narrative around this crisis and explore new possibilities. These proposals could respond to:

• Solutions aimed at supporting the well-being of employees during the crisis

• How creative industries can optimize workflow and adopt sustainable business models

• Creating platforms for a stakeholder to build meaningful business relationships and receive mentorship

• Creating a centralized database of creative resources, from freelancers to skill-based collectives and collaborative businesses

• Exploring how early adoption of digital platforms can help sustain creative businesses

Visit www.dubai-ideathon.com to find out more about the next phase of the initiative.