We are delighted to announce the inaugural Global FUTR Lab in FutureEverything’s 20th year. We have partnered with the British Council’s Creative Economy team to select 10 of the world’s most innovative, interesting and irrepressible young creatives to take part in the festival and showcase their work.

Through a competitive application process, we are thrilled to welcome ten international innovators from Japan, Pakistan, South Korea, Nigeria, Ukraine, UAE and the UK to take part in FutureEverything’s festival programme, bringing a wealth of interdisciplinary approaches across art, technology, and innovation.

The ten participants will join the festival for an exclusive 5 day process, beginning with a two day lab and design sprint, facilitated by researchers from Strange Telemetry, using Manchester as inspiration. They will move past the ‘creative cities’ narrative to explore how industrial and cultural heritage influences their own practice.

The programme will form part of a larger discussion around critical approaches to innovation, seeking to move beyond assumed ideas on the value of ‘disruption’ to a richer understanding of the existing socio-technical systems and challenges which young entrepreneurs have to grapple with around the globe.

The 2015 Global FUTR Lab Participants
From Nigeria, Adebayo Adegbembo’s collection of interactive African culture teaching apps and videos – Asa (meaning culture in Yoruba) – aims to preserve, educate and creatively deliver the rich heritage of the continent.

Looking at the importance of sharing community data, Areeb Karman’s Noustix project (Pakistan) is a unique platform for collecting, visualizing, and analyzing “Geo-Spatial-Temporal” data, which can be used to plot maps used by the community and elsewhere.

Also using data in their work, Ukraine’s Ivan Pasichnyk project Ecoisme aims to create better relationships between customers and energy providers, using sensor data and cloud technologies to encourage better attitudes and tools for sustainable energy.

Chronically Driven (CD) is a digital social innovation, created by Bhavani Esapathi (UK), which is aimed at bringing awareness of chronically debilitating illnesses to the forefront of social media. Using social media and online platforms to create better community support and communicate with the wider public, CD works to encourage positive social impact on the medical community, leading to increasing medical support.

From the UK, creative technologist Dan Williams’ Postcards from a Supply Chain is a necessary exploration of the manufacturing, production routess and supply chains of the world’s personal electronics. Told in first person, Dan’s project is a result of the Unknown Fields exploration which saw a team of writers, researchers and technologists embark on a cargo ship through one of China’s major shipping channels.

From the United Arab Emirates the interdisciplinary designer, and a maker Salem Al-Mansoori will be presenting his explorations into social cartography and online wayfinding systems. Salem’s passion is generative, data-driven, narrative-based works, with a focus on creating digital fabrication to data visualization to algorithm-based visual art installations.

Often the way we can feel out systems, or understand their limits, is through physically playing with them. Korea’s Hee Eun Kim has developed an interactive installation, Net Disruption, to facilitate a new approach to our experience and perception of network space through a series of transformative strings.

With play and curiosity and the heart of the organisation, Leila Johnston (UK), is bringing her multidisciplinary art and research Hack Circus to Global FUTR lab. Part magazine, part event, part experimentation, Hack Circus works at breaking down boundaries between performers and audience, artists and technologists to disrupt assumptions about identity.

Exploring new ways to use exhibition spaces, Japan’s Nozomi Matsuyama has developed a collaborative approach to curation, Sckell Building Exhibition. Using three floors of a building as series of interfaces to bring interdisciplinary practitioners and disciplines together, this project causes an exhibition to function as a crossing point of daily life and images

Indonesia’s Venzha Christ is currently looking to change the innovation and making landscape of South East Asia, using his time with the Global FUTR lab to develop one of his ongoing proposals, including creating the first FabLab in South East Asia. His other project, Transformaking 2015, is a push to induct the first International Summit on Critical and Transformative Making in Indonesia, 2015.

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