I'm running a session at PICNIC Festival 2012 about improving the world by ‘Building Things That Matter’ – exploring how to use digital platforms more effectively to improve and impact the world we live in. Here's an extract of an interview I did explaining what the session is all about.
PICNIC: What 'new ownership' trend will your session explore? Why is this trend important?
Andy: The connectedness and empowerment brought about by the internet and related technologies have huge potential as a force for good in today’s society. Individuals the world over are harnessing digital technology’s democratizing potential to drive social change by inventing new ways of improving the society we live in, from the bottom up.
What this means in practice is that anybody can be a social entrepreneur. And even a small idea can have a big impact. At the same time, people are realising you don’t need a lot of money, or a big organisation, to change the world. If you have a great idea, then what’s holding you back?
PICNIC: What will participants do during your session?
Andy: Together we’ll explore how digital platforms can be made more effective for social good. We’ll focus on two aspects: the heart and the mind. The heart engages our emotions, but the mind makes the service tangible and practical.
We’ll start with inspiration from case studies, looking at projects which have built successful digital platforms and those which didn’t quite hit the mark.
We’ll finish with a crossover session, brainstorming opportunities for new digital platforms with the potential to change society and look at their potential pitfalls.
PICNIC: What will participants learn from your session which they can use in their professional and/or personal lives?
Andy: Participants will come away with a better understanding of the key design principles for building a successful digital platform for social good to apply in their own contexts. We’ll also have a little fun along the way.
PICNIC Festival 2012 will attract approx. 3500 participants from the Netherlands and around the world. The theme is "New Ownership: the shift from top down to bottom up". September 17 and 18, EYE Film Institute, Amsterdam.
Thanks to everyone that attended the workshop. It was fun! We'll be sending out a little book with our findings all those that left their contact details. In the meantime, here are some photos of the day.