The power of co-creation: Future Innovators Summit 2014

Digital World Blog

The concept of work as we know it is toast24 innovative minds are headed to Linz, Austria for the Future Innovators Summit, a project of Ars Electronica, ITU Telecom World, and Hakuhodo held between 4-8 September. This group represents a multidisciplinary melting pot of creative engineers, social entrepreneurs and social activists, scientists, artists, designers and tech innovators, including six former winners of the Young Innovators Competition. They will be working towards solving problems facing the world today, submitted on-site by the audience and selected by serendipity, and will be asked to find solutions in the form of concepts and maybe even new partnerships in a collaborative co-creation process.

In 2013, in the Lab at ITU Telecom World 2013 in Bangkok, a bag of stones was lifted high in the air. Its fall to the ground was controlled by Gravity Light. This system uses gravity, friction and a gear system to generate enough electricity to provide up to 30 minutes of light at a time, anywhere in the world. Though it started as an art installation, Gravity Light quickly became a product that has the potential to change lives for those who live without regular power supplies. This kind of thinking was the foundation of the relationship between Ars Electronica and ITU Telecom World, that art and design can inform technology and social change in powerful ways.

From this relationship came the Future Innovators Summit. There’s no way, of course, of knowing exactly what this unique and exciting mix of young people will bring about, but there is tremendous potential for dialogue, exchange of ideas, communal inspiration and co-creation across generations, nationalities and professional disciplines. They will work together in a collaborative process, alongside professional facilitators, future researchers and an impressive group of mentors, who will ensure just the right environment for ideas to take shape. All with the aim of turning technology to positive social ends.

Through a mixture of video documentation, real-time feedback from future researchers in each session, interactive displays, observations and social media monitoring, the participants and the audience onsite in Linz and online around the globe will form a broader collaborative community. All this aggregated data will be available as a live feed of interactive videos at for anyone interested in following the thought processes, evolution of ideas and engagement of contributors. We want to make the co-creation process real, witness change in the making, and involve as wide an audience as possible.

Using these different resources, we will be running an experiment in following, tracking and analysing the creative ideation processes involved in the meeting of minds from across different professional fields, different corners of the globe and different generations. We’re looking to map this thinking process, define the key takeaways of how offline co-creation works, and apply this knowledge to our online co-creation Challenges in the Young Innovators Competition. We will of course also present the concrete outcomes of the Future Innovators Summit, in the form of six creative solutions to six global challenges, in The Lab on the showfloor InnovationSpace at ITU Telecom World 2014 this December. This is where we hope to showcase some of the best young innovative talent being put to the best possible ends in the creation of social start-ups – so that we can see many more successful ideas such as Gravity Light changing lives at the most fundamental level.

Each group will be working independently and has its own additional hashtag:

For Group A, follow on #FISGA

For Group B, follow on #FISGB

For Group C, follow on #FISGC

For Group D, follow on #FISGD

For Group E, follow on #FISGE

For Group F, follow on #FISGF


You can follow all of the action at the summit through #FISummit on Facebook, Twitter and Flickr

And look for more information at:

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Digital World

Accelerating ICT innovation to improve lives faster. The global event for SMEs corporates and governments

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