Creative regions are nowadays seen as foci of innovation and growth and are hence regarded strategic areas in a fierce-and often global-competition. This paper aims at providing an operational assessment framework for evaluating the innovation potential of competing regions on the basis of statistical indicators that mirror the indigenous regional creative resources. A set of five distinct evaluation methods is proposed to assess this innovation potential, on the basis of a comparative study on nine regions in Europe. This approach enables us to identify and rank the most promising regions. The robustness of the findings is tested by applying a meta-multicriteria analysis. © 2010 Taylor & Francis.