Adding creativity to collaborative innovation and other smart developments

A few months ago I reported on the many incubation hubs and innovation labs that have sprung up around the country, and indeed around the world. Many of these centres are developed within smart cities; some are using local libraries; many ICT companies have their own centres; and the universities have also become key players in facilitating these developments.

Some concentrate on students, others on local businesses, and others on start-ups. And there are, of course, many crossovers.

I commented at the time that I was very impressed by these grassroots developments and by the many young and passionate people involved. One of my aims is to link these centres nationally and even internationally. I believe that there is a great deal of synergy here, and bringing these entrepreneurial people together and linking them up with others working on similar projects helps them to learn from each other. And this linking process can be broadened to include the movers and shakers in local communities (business, bureaucrats, politician, community leaders).

The only way to move ahead in our increasingly complex environment is to collaborate; and in particular to collaborate across sectors and disciplines.

I was further inspired about this when I visited GX Australia last month at the Sydney Showground. I was originally motivated to visit this gaming show because my son was one of the exhibitors.

GX Australia advertised itself as: a weekend-long celebration of everything gaming & geek related — whether you’re into comics or video games, cosplaying or consoles, you’ll find something here showcasing your interests and hobbies. And best of all, it’s all taking place in an epically awesome, inclusive, and supportive environment!

Very similar to the incubation experience mentioned above, here too I found unbelievable passionate people with brilliant ideas and, of course, enormous creativity – most of them were using many technology tools to create the most creative and incredible realistic games. However, there were also other creative games not necessarily based on technology – more like board games.

While there is obviously a strong emphasis on entertainment there were also lots of examples in education and in business.

I am sure that some of the incubation hubs I mentioned above already facilitate the gaming community; however I believe that there is significantly more synergy to be found if we bring these groups together more actively. Having experienced this vibrant and creative group of people this is now something that I will pursue more actively in my smart city work. The high level of innovative creativity would be a very welcome addition to the rational developments that are taking place in the more traditional business focussed incubation centres and generally in smart city, smart building and smart community activities.

Paul Budde

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