To Lisbon to speak at the Explorers Festival – an inspiring event in the very real sense of the word.
What they got right was an understanding that the answer to all dialogue concerning digital innovation / start ups / entrepreneurship / market disruption etc is not always “it’s an app which….”. The event managed to step outside of what is becoming an increasingly tired and self serving conversation – “you’re either digital evangelist or you’re against us” – and highlighted innovation large and small, digital and physical.
I was given the task of discussing “creativity meets technology for competitive advantage”………in 12 minutes (the slides are here). However to echo the point above, part of what I wanted to get across was the importance of user experience and appropriate use of technology, rather than technology for its own sake. In fact I highlighted the example of balloon mapping Guimaraes as appropriate “tech” to achieve a desired outcome.
Across the day a series of amazing speakers shared their experience, from Astronaut Jean-Francois Clervoy to big wave surfer Garrett McNamara, alongside new start ups in nuclear energy, sustainable personal energy generation (see Genneo and Sole Power) and a personal favourite, wearable tech from Machina.
The day ended in the amazing Estufa Fria (the picture at the top) with the Lisbon Challenge distributing €150k to start up competition winners linked to a series of business development visits to Sao Paolo and London.
And I finally made it onto one of those live conference illustrations, so proud…