There Are Some Awesome Work Discussions Happening At Vivid Sydney: Here Are 10 Talks To Try

Vivid Ideas festival director Jess Scully. Photo: David Maurice Smith.


Vivid Sydney, gets underway tonight and for the next 18 days, alongside the free light walk there’s music and Vivid Ideas, curated by Jess Scully, a chance to think talk and challenge.

Jess has been the festival director of Vivid Ideas for the past six years, one of the curators of TEDxSydney and the instigator of Kids Hack Day Sydney.

Vivid Ideas is a celebration of innovation and creativity focusses on the creative industries, but with plenty of advice for all businesses.

Especially for Business Insider, we asked Jess to pick the 10 best talks to help businesspeople get ahead and get inspired.

1. DARE JENNINGS on turning what you love into what you do
Tuesday, June 3, 6.30-8pm
They say “do something you love and you’ll never work a day in your life”: Dare is a man who’s well and truly lived that dream, while creating businesses that transformed an entire product category, and establishing not one, but two, Australian creative icons now exporting to the world, in Mambo and Deus ex Machina.
What does it take to capture the zeitgeist and create a market from scratch? This event is essential for anyone passionate about creating unique products, immersive retail experiences or brands that can last the test of time.

2. Australia’s Industrial Revolution: Manufacturing in 2030
Tuesday 3 June, 12-4pm
Who is investing in the future of business in Australia? Does business have the incentive to invest in R&D? Are we too conservative and risk averse? This event brings together the pioneers that are transforming manufacturing and production in this country and beyond: we’ve got blue-sky thinkers who are bringing Redfern into the space age or growing human bones for skeletal reconstruction. We’ve also got business leaders like Steve Vamos, President of the Society for Knowledge Economics, and a company director with wide-ranging experience in ICT, retail and tech, outlining the practical action required to travel from today to tomorrow, and experts covering protecting, exploiting and properly managing our IP, blocking the brain drain and ensuring our workforce has the skills to stay competitive.

3. Future Shock
Sunday June 1, 3.30-5pm
We all want to know was coming next for creative business, our work lives, and the content and products we make and consume: this event is all about the trends and dramatic disruptions which will define the desires and demands of the 21st century.
It’s a wide-ranging, head-spinning tour through the future of workplace culture, skills development, communicating with audiences, new materials and manufacturing processes. We’ll hear from; Karen Lawson, CEO of Career One, Canadian higher education leader Keith Hampson from Acrobatiq, Kuan Mun Fai, head of OLED tech at Philips, and two of China’s new generation creative thinkers, Liu Yan and Kestrel Lee.

4. Artists in Residence: Collaboration between Artists and Organisations
Saturday, 31 May, 1-3pm.
Artists can bringing fresh eyes into organisations: they can be the catalysts to spark challenging conversations and tackle concepts that are usually too tough to explore. This event explores how interventions from creative thinkers offer new insights, through a new model of artist-in-residence programs with collaboration at their core.

5. Diversity Breeds Opportunity: Demographic Change and the Bottom Line
Friday, May 30, 2.30-4pm
This session is all about the big benefits that come with inclusion and diversity: offering a practical road-map and strategies for a diverse and flexible workplace. How can diversity improve an organisation’s performance and contribute to the bottom line? The event will feature CSIRO leader Dr Cathy Foley, reps from Telstra and Westpac, and will be hosted by Jane Caro.

6. Nina Tandon: on Building With Biology
Thursday, June 5, 6.30-8pm
Nina Tandon is at the very bleeding edge of biotech: a field which is already re-shaping architecture, food, fashion and of course, medicine. Named one of the 100 Most Creative People in Business by Fast Company, Tandon is the co-author of Super Cells: Building with Biology and CEO and co-founder of EpiBone, the world’s first company growing living human bones for skeletal reconstruction.
What will medicine look like when we can design and grow new organs, skin and bone? What will our products look like when we can demand extreme personalisation – where necessary, tailored to our blood type and DNA?

7. TERTIARY 3.0: Exploring Local Innovation in Higher Education
Monday, June 2, 12-4pm
Are we training people for the jobs and emerging industries that will exist tomorrow? Do we know how to teach the skills that make leaders in the knowledge economy? What role should employers play in keeping their workforces up-to-date and upskilled?
This session brings together global and local leaders in education and business to talk about life-long learning, and managing the ever-evolving skills-development process. It’s not just for educators: we also devlve into how innovative companies bringing their skills development programs in-house and working with educators to unlock the potential of their workforce.

8. Creative ways to change the world
Saturday, May 24, 6.30-8pm
The triple bottom line makes a lot of sense today, and having a business motivated by purpose and impact, as much as profit, is becoming more and more common. On a practical level, how can entrepreneurs, designers, scientists, engineers and economists change the world through their work? These creative thinkers show us how it is possible to make a career in change-making, draw on resources others overlook, and how to establish a business with a mission, or bring a greater sense of purpose into your career or organisation.

9. Beyond The Review: Copyright and the Digital Economy
Wednesday, 4 June, 9.30am–11.30pm
Many in the tech and start-up ecosystem find Australia’s current copyright provisions restrictive and inflexible, not conducive to the nuances and requirements of the digital era. On the other hand rights-owners, already challenged when protecting the intellectual property of musicians, filmmakers, writers and other creatives in the digital era, have argued strongly for maintaining the status quo.
How can a reassessment of copyright assist innovation, research, and economic growth? Will reform recommendations be implemented? If not, what can industry and practitioners across the sector do to achieve workable outcomes that protect creators while allowing for innovation?

10. Screen Business Model Innovation: Shakespeare Had It Right
Friday, 6 June, 2-4pm
We know that changing times call for a rethink of business practice, and many industries, particularly those relying on funding for content production, need to find new ways to monetise their output: but can we move forward by looking back?
Some of Australia’s screen business leaders explore a radical rethink of content models based on Shakespeare’s approach.

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