We still talk about it very, very little. With the usual time lag that forces us to chase others, and that brings innovation in bel pesse with a guilty delay of 5/6 years, here we are finally starting to think about things in Italy too . Thinking about new ideas inside and outside of business. In a word, the most interesting and impressive frontiers of design innovation are visible here too, even if timidly.
A good definition of design innovation says that it is “about generating ideas that are humanly desirable, technically feasible, and financially sustainable”. Design innovation as a process aims to support life in a continuously renewed system. Specific methods and processes that support design innovation can ensure relevant innovations that support the survival and prosperity of the system. This is an idea that applies to people from all walks of life and all backgrounds. As simple as this may seem, it is actually not at all.
Tomorrow and Saturday, November 17 and 18, about sixty of the best talents of Italian digital creativity, winners of the Faber Prize, will meet in Turin for the FaberMeeting: this is the sixth time in 15 years. Before them, two very intensive days of workshops, talks, round tables and networking to get to know each other, explore and plan together, meet and start collaborations.
FaberMeeting is one of the longest-running but precious initiatives on innovation and creativity in Italy: each edition includes languages and themes that have begun to become mainstream over time, such as Machine Learning, Web 2.0, Smart Mobility, blockchain, crowdfunding, virtual reality, artificial intelligence or gaming.
Why is FaberMeeting always ahead? “Because paradoxically he does not chase trends” Carlo Boccazzi Varotto, creator of the contest/program and one of the most interesting innovators of the Italian scene, tells Quifinanza. Faber’s idea was born out of a simple need in 2005. “In an era when the training system was lagging, companies wanted to find young talents who were self- or virtually trained. He downloaded manuals of programs like After Effects or Director at night and approached visual and graphic design, or the web, mainly out of passion. There was immense freedom of expression. There, many companies realized that a flyer for an event or university fanzine ran the risk of being more interesting than a commercial product.
And what did you do Bokazi?
We wanted to accelerate this meeting between new talents and businesses. The idea of mine and that of Musi Bollini, currently deputy director of Rai Ragazzi, was to work on two fronts: on the one hand to bring out talents through competition and on the other hand to call professionals to evaluate these works. Finally, invite the winners and professionals to Turin to get to know each other and work together for two days. The content of FaberMeeting has always been co-planned with partner companies to explore all the possibilities of cooperation, and perhaps it is this approach that allows us to anticipate the new social and cultural needs of this special area – innovation design. gives. Expresses design thinking and communication of advanced services.
What specifically are these needs expressed by businesses?
I would say nothing new but emerging. A common thread that connects many FaberMeeting events is the desire to really think about how digital creativity, design, communication, etc. can provide answers to big societal challenges, such as population aging, business, and impactful social issues. Coherence between issues. D&I (Diversity and Inclusion), Climate Emergency. Innovate by bringing together social impact and economic opportunity. A topic that has been present at FaberMeeting for years, which in the past has expressed a desire, an aspiration, of young participants, so much so that in 2018 with Laura Cossa, who curated that edition with me, we dedicated a roundtable to this To the aspect. Today this is certainly a request shared by companies, so much so that we have decided to call this edition “Creativity, Business and Impact” and invite as partners some third sector companies that are very important for the Turin Social Are part of the Impact Network.
What will we find at FaberMeeting 2023?
There will be several workshops with a limited number of places, and two round tables open to the public: on November 17 “Designing for the Silver Wave: The potential of the silver economy on the UX of the future”, which brings together key national players, benefits and non-profits on the topic of inclusive design, from companies like Triple Sense to Hackability. and “Cities in Transition: Empowering Creative Communities and Their Social Impact” on 18 November to highlight how creativity and design-related experiences face new social and cultural challenges as well as economic challenges.
It is often widely believed that profitability and social impact run on two parallel tracks…
Absolutely, and this is exactly a stereotype that we want to eliminate from our daily actions that also create visible effects. I will give you an example. Today in Italy, men and women over the age of 65 represent 24% of the population and will reach 35% by 2050. They have fewer children but most of all they live longer. With businesses today and public administration tomorrow, there are a lot of goods and services to reimagine. We cannot put it off any longer, because it is a huge social need but also a rich economic opportunity for the people who will work there.
Where is the meeting place?
Improving services and products by engaging communities – what Andrea Barbero of So Simple Group calls “influencer marketing for audience engagement” – potentially has a social purpose as well. Just as there is also an economic objective in imagining products and services for a multi-ethnic society or “innovation for development in international cooperation,” described by Fulvio Barsanetti of the Fondazione Compagnia di San Paolo in our two-day meeting. has done it. all examples of frugal innovation, From which, paradoxically, Italian companies can learn. And then there is the infusion of social enterprises that are becoming increasingly important: Stackers Design, Libre, ORSO. And Essersee has dedicated us a working table, as has Loris Fionda of Limo, to reflect on the difference between the promotion and value proposition of a product.
So what will we see in this sixth edition of FaberMeeting?
Behind closed doors, we propose 16 workshops, 6 roundtables and 6 talks. Companies like Zendegu, Merakin, and So Simple talk about innovative and productive digital marketing from different perspectives; TOP-IX explains how big data can be used, Bianco Tangerine focuses on how it can be described and visualized; Domino, Francesco Bombardi, FabLab Torino propose new ways to design products and services; Eggers, Valentino Megale and Francesco Ronchi of Synesthesia talk about new applications of artificial intelligence.
But we will also talk about sports thinking…
Yes, Marco Mazzaglia of Tiny Bull Studios will talk about how to use game thinking in social design. Maurizia Sereni and Giovanna Bo will bring production experience from successful TV series such as ZeroCalcCare. Matteo Rostagno, who among other things won the Faber Prize in 2008, comes especially from London to talk about XR – extended realities.
All this is completely free.
Everyone made themselves available for free to help the system grow. Even Carlo De Marchis, not only an Italian, but one of the great gurus of interactive television would come over to play records during our networking aperitifs. There is also a lot of enthusiasm and a lot of availability for paid internships and internships being available as bonuses. I find this extraordinary. I myself, in agreement with Veco, the social enterprise implementing the initiative, have decided to donate all my compensation for the curatorship to a non-profit.
All tangible signs from the world of digital creativity, design, communication that want space for discussion, even intergenerational…
FaberMeeting is exactly that, in a world that does not make concessions, and addresses thorny issues such as gender issues, the organization of work and even forms of precarity. In short, we are far from a shining message. We want to free ourselves from the image of a para-artistic bohème: in fact, we want to symbolize the new “knowledge work” and, in this way, be able to generate new social needs to which we can respond. Let’s try to discuss social innovation and impact.