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This year, the theme was “bold moves” and showcased the bold endeavours of a diverse group of teenagers. Promotion for the event read:
“We have never been more connected, more innovative, or more resourceful. We have also never felt the weight of the present and future more than right now.”
Accordingly, there was a serious but hopeful tone to the talks. We heard from youth grappling with prejudice, mental illness, isolation and death – sharing stories of what it means to be a teen, maturing and learning to cope with realities from which we are sheltered as children.
Each one of the speakers had a positive strategy for dealing with personal and global pain. We heard from a young Syrian refugee who, despite odds and parental hair-tearing, managed to carry her school books across borders to ensure her education. We heard from a young girl, mercilessly bullied and abused, who had channelled her experience into the creation of an app that allowed other isolated youth to find peers to sit with at lunchtime. We heard from a self-taught computer-scientist who’s personal experience in Afghanistan inspired him to create artificial intelligence for improved breast cancer detection.
The event opened with a reflection upon every participants place in a historical chain:
“We are here today, in this moment on this planet, as a result of decisions that humans have made every year, month, day, hour, minute and second that have come before.”
It was only fitting then the day should conclude with a voice from the past: Ben Ferencz, the last surviving prosecutor from the Nuremburg Tribunals, joined via skype to share his experiences, fears and hopes for the future. He addressed his audience directly and with respect, speaking to them not as children but as bourgeoning adults about to take on a world of responsibility. Ferencz metaphor of passing on the torch of humanity and progress to this new generation had a clear impact. From the speakers we had the pleasure of listening to that day, we can think of no better a group of young people to rise to the challenge Ferencz’s described.
Participants congregated to share research, explain current initiatives and ideate new solutions for the needs of children on the move as well as means of prevention against the many risks these children face. Among participants were humanitarian organisations like UNICEF, government representatives, the United Nations, intergovernmental agencies, universities, private sector companies, Save the Children’s many international offices, and many more.
It was inspiring to see the spirit of collaboration and collective action that permeated the event. There was incredible energy as attendees shared their work, ideas and passion for change.
We were asked to graphic record throughout the day, capturing output from talks and workshops. The graphic recording was galleried in the main hall so attendees reflect upon the content from the day, and discuss plans for future action.
We created an infomural that wove together the output of the event into a visual story. There was a powerful narrative running through the event – the journey of young refugees, migrants and displaced persons from risk and turmoil to hope and opportunity, supported by the collective initiatives of all those represented by the event – and we wanted to bring it to life.
As part of the event, Save the Children nominated 20 inspiring young people, all currently or in the past considered “children on the move”. These incredible young people were strong advocates for the rights of their peers, contributing music, legal aid, philanthropic support, and more to the cause. We shared their stories in visual form and were thrilled to see them respond effusively, laughing and taking photos of each other.
It was a pleasure to collaborate with Save the Children and we were inspired by the stories we captured during the event. The strength and positivity that was generated during the two days of talks and workshops is much needed. There is a lot of work to be done but huge hope for the future.
This year, TED celebrates 30 years of ideas worth spreading, and we were very excited to be a part of ‘The Next Chapter’ in Vancouver. As expected, TED didn’t disappoint, delivering a 5 day schedule packed with inspirational, engaging and thought-provoking content. In case you haven’t had a chance to watch any of it yet we’ve summarised some key takeaways below, the full videos (as they are released) can all be found on TED.com.
Download our output of the TED talks below:
As technology advances and it gets smaller, faster and better, people are working on combining biology with technology – with extraordinary outcomes. One of these people is Hugh Herr, who describes a future where humans will no longer be limited by their infrastructure as bionic limbs and exoskeletons enable us to transcend disability and push our limits. While Herr develops the physical nature of the human body, Ray Kurzweil looks ahead to the day when, using nanobots we will be able to access the cloud straight from our brain. Gone will be the days of running out of things to say, as Kurzweil explains; our thinking will become a hybrid of biological and non-biological thinking. Whilst both exciting and frightening, one thing is for sure: technology is set to revolutionise the way we live, think, and interact.
In this age of access and connectivity, it’s easy to forget that there are better ways to use the Internet than you-tubing cats stuck in boxes. Sugata Mitra (winner of the 2013 TED prize) demonstrates the real power of the Internet through ‘The School in the Cloud”, which provides education to children in remote areas via Skype screens. Take a look and get involved at www.theschoolinthecloud.org. Similarly, Shai Reshef’s University of the People makes free higher education accessible to anyone with access to the Internet and a desire to learn. Built on the basis that education is a basic right and not a privilege, Reshef is helping students in 143 countries take control of their future.
The impact of education for people in rural areas, in particular girls, is profound, as Ziaudden Yousafzai (aka Malala’s father) spoke of the identity and empowerment it provides them. By teaching boys to unlearn their misguided attitudes towards women, Yousafzai hopes to break the cycle and change the future. Geena Rocero also emphasised the need for education to spread acceptance and understanding in relation to gender assignment and the labels humans are assigned from birth.
The internet and social media have both had a huge impact on the ways in which people connect and socialise virtually but Amanda Burden recognises the need to still provide public spaces that bring people in cities physically together. As a city planner Burden had the opportunity to help shape the city and provide green, outdoor spaces that helped build a sense of community and togetherness and help people interact and engage both with each other and their surroundings. Similarly, Bran Ferren recognises the need for people to experience and appreciate the natural and design wonders of our world and civilization, away from technology. He further explains that in our increasingly tech-dependent world, we need to understand that art and design are what makes humanity special and a way of communicating ideas and bridging knowledge.
Despite all the advances in technology, there is much we still don’t know. As Adam Allans explains, while we know how the universe began and how it might end, we don’t know (and probably never will) what happens in black holes. However, Andrew Connelly introduced us to the LSST (the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope), a piece of extraordinary technology that is so powerful that nobody knows what they’re going to discover with it. One image from it is the equivalent of 300 images from the hubble telescope, and promises to produce new and unknown answers to our evolution and the universe.
From the very, very big, to the miniscule, Rob Knight educated us on the importance of microbes and their responsibility for whether mosquitoes think we’re tasty, or how pills will affect our heart. However, as we have around 100 trillion microbial cells, there is still a long way to go before we fully understand the role they play.
And if you’ve ever wandered where your internal dialogue came from and why it won’t stop giving you a hard time, then unfortunately we still don’t have the answer. David Chalmer explains that while it’s so directly experienced by all of us, it is one of the universes biggest phenomenons. As a philosopher he questions why we have it, whether it’s universal and whether we should eat something that has it… There are no answers yet, but maybe one day!
Although the invention of the Internet changed the world forever, and signalled a new era of learning, sharing and connecting, Edward Snowden (via the ‘Snow-bot’) highlighted the urgent need for conversations and debates on privacy, security and transparency within a networked and data filled world. He argued that while the NSA does great things, there needs to be more transparency in relation to the secrecy surrounding the mass surveillance they carry out. As an inter-connected world, he emphasises the importance of abiding by certain standards to avoid undermining international relationships and invading peoples’ right to privacy. In response, Richard Ledgett, the NSA’s Deputy Director accepted that whilst important to have national and international conversations on security and privacy, Snowden’s approach puts people at risk. He argues that whilst people do have a right to privacy, there are considerable risks from terrorist and cyber attacks and that surveillance is designed to protect the people. Ledgett urged people to learn the facts and look at the data before forming conclusions. Whether or not you believe Snowden’s actions were right, there is little doubt that they have brought about one of the most valuable and significant conversations on the issues of privacy and security within a technological world. After all, who’s watching who?
We´ll be back with more scribing and lessons learned soon…
This week, Innovation Arts attended the Annual HR Directors Business Summit in Birmingham. We were invited to ‘live scribe’ some of the inspirational talks from leading experts, with topics covering everything from discovering goldmines of talent to the role of robots in the future HR world! Scribing is a way of capturing complex conversations and discussions graphically (using huge whiteboards and very talented scribes’). Capturing information in this way brings a highly visual element to your meetings and conferences, and can really help bring your organisation’s most complex ideas, conversations or processes to life.
Alongside this, our scribes spent two days creating a ‘knowledge wall’ which visually communicated key insights from the talks that took place throughout the Summit. (See Fernanda and Eddie with the final outcome above).
We also introduced our new values and behaviours game; Dilemma™. The summit brings together 1000 Directors and Industry Professionals so it was a fantastic opportunity for us to demonstrate the new game. Gamification is such a current engagement theme and the enthusiasm at the event definitely proved this.
The dialogue started in Zurich and continued in London for Swiss Re’s 150 Anniversary at the Olympic Park. Our scribing from the previous event acted as a springboard for the conversations to be had over the weekend.
Keynote speaker, Lord Sebastian Coe, provided a fascinating insight into the risks associated with the London 2012 Games.
We recently got back from the launch event of Swiss Re’s 150 Years Anniversary in Zurich, where we scribed a series of dialogue sessions.
The dialogue sessions focused on the biggest risks faced today and by future generations:
We captured the entire afternoon’s dialogue with our scribing team and produced a special Dialogue report. We also captured keynote speaker Peter Maurer, President of the International Committee of the Red Cross’s speech.
We were very lucky to be invited to scribe at Foro Banorte last summer. This was an event hosted by Mexican bank Banorte that aimed to spark conversation surrounding the growth of the Bajio region of Mexico.
Speakers included governors of the states of Aguascalientes, Guanajuato and San Luis, ministers of Economy and Taxes as well as ex-president of Colombia Cesar Gaviria and former mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani.
Conversation topics ranged from education to tax reforms, cooperation to competition. And we were there, visually capturing it all.
It was a multi-cultural challenge; we had a Canadian scribe capturing in Spanish, a Mexican scribe who learned to scribe in English and at some point we were listening to keynote speeches in English and translating them to Spanish as we scribed!
It was great to see participants coming up to the WorkWalls to see how ideas were coming together in a really visual and interesting way.
We even made it to the front page of the business section of Mexican newspaper Reforma!
Have a look at the photos below, they show an extract of the book we produced for Banorte as a memento of the event…