This article argues that creativity has the greatest potential to flourish if a learning environment is embedded within a community that emphasises a deep sense of place. Yet in a globalised world, rootedness is often regarded as antithetical to creativity. But far from representing dead artefacts that are anti-modern and non-economic, culture and tradition provide the ideal base for innovation. Ireland's creative potential will only be realised if its strong tradition of metaphor, storytelling and imagination is fostered. Education that emphasises the arts rooted in place, provides the condition for an innovative self-reliant country, unique while cosmopolitan, well positioned to compete in a turbulent global economy.