November 24-27, 2014
The inaugural Festival of Innovation and Creativity is over, one can say. But in its conclusion, it is also a beginning.
Sister City Partners is launching in 2015 the New Possibilities for Regional Resilience Series in Townsville. This will be a series of talks and Q&A open to the public about key topics emerging from the original Festival, and also about some broader themes impacting on the future of regions.
The first of these Talks will feature Dr John Hewson, Chairman of the Asset Owners Disclosure Project. He will present and discuss on “Stranded Assets and Carbon Futures for the North”. This will be held at 5:30-6:30pm, Monday 23 February 2015. The venue will be the Townsville campus of JCU (more details will be provided shortly to registered attendees). Bookings can be made via the tab below.
Chairman, Sister City PartnersFind out more about the festival
Martin Blake is right when he says the outputs are visible, but the outcomes of events like the Festival won’t be. That’s because, by bringing together people, ideas and passions, new collaborations are formed, and which will evolve over time. As for outputs, Sister City Partners is pleased to begin work convening a number of initiatives emerging from the Festival. Some of these are:
1. A Partnership of Regional Resilience Charter. This will bring together the key threads of the 3.5 days, and provide a solid – if evolving – basis for ongoing collaborative intent and focus. We hope that it will provide disparate peoples with a common platform.
2. Project Pods. These are cohesive though permeable project teams, rather than rock-solid structures. This approach is somewhat experimental, but is in keeping with the fluid nature of the Festival itself, and the permeable nature of collaborative participation. Project Pods around food (2 pods – one macro, one “social enterprise” in nature) and energy futures (integrating finance with scaled solutions) are in the pipeline.
3. Communitisation. An emerging model of ownership over shared or common assets is developing. Its immediate focus is on the Port of Townsville, but can be developed into a more widespread and applicable model of community ownership into the future. Lessons from around the world are informing this work, and we have no doubt that the experiences in North Queensland, will contribute to the broader conversation.
The Festival was bookended by two special events, and it was very exciting to be part of an extended week of creativity and innovation related activity:
1. The first ever Townsville Start Up weekend (21-23 November), and
2. Another first, the Townsville Digital Citizens Living Labs (29-30 November).
Start Up Weekend
The Townsville Startup Weekend is a 54-hour “frenzy” gathering coders, designers, marketing/biz folks and anyone interested in creating startups to pitch ideas and spend the whole weekend having fun and working on awesome stuff. The goal is to create an environment where passionate people can come together to get things done; to learn, network, bridge the gap between trades, expose potential and see actual results.
We’re hoping that there may even be some “start up” ideas that link straight into the Festival’s main themes of food, finance and fuel.
The Living Labs is a initiative of QUT and Townsville City Council, and focuses on fostering digital participation in regional Australian communities. There will be two Living Labs:
1. Wholesome, Frugal and Organic: A Living Lab (9:30am to 3pm, Saturday 29 November), and
2. Grassroots Activism with Social Media: A Living Lab (9:30am to 3pm, Sunday 30 November).
They will both be held at Riverway Arts Centre, 20 Village Boulevard, Thuringowa Central.
The Innovation Festival will be held at a couple of venues. The first is the Eco Active Centre at Riverway. The second will be a nice covered outdoor setting on the last morning. Download the festival maps below to find your way on the day. Venues have been kindly provided by Townsville City Council. Another Big Thank You!