About the Sustainable Craft Networks Partnership
The Sustainable Craft Networks Partnership brings together grouping of craft producers from five member states. The Partnership will research, investigate and share knowledge, know-how and good practice on how to assist both craft businesses themselves and the networks of which they are part to become more sustainable. It will research the different and innovative ways that craft businesses and their associations are using to:
• meet the labour market and training needs of craft businesses,
• generate sales (particularly in the current economic downturn),
• and improve product and process innovation as a key driver of business sustainability.
The partnership will then disseminate that information and learning through the innovative use of video diaries, pod-casts and web-blogging, thereby promoting non-formal and informal learning and strengthening mutual learning.
Craft producers typically produce specialised and often labour intensive products, many of which have a high design input and/or incorporate a traditional (and usually dying) skill. As such these items are usually sold as high value added products. In an economic downturn, where people invariable cut their discretionary spending on such items, craft producer face a particularly difficult trading situation. Many of these businesses are subsistence level businesses, with little financial reserves, hence there is a great need for these businesses to learn from each other (peer learning) on how to make their business more innovative and sustainable.