Tag Archive for communication

Join us to celebrate Social Media Day with ‘Diversity in Innovation’ #smday

Join us for Social Media Day: Diversity in Innovation, co-hosted by Community Brave Foundation and Social Innovation Sydney, at Vibewire in Ultimo on Saturday 30th June 2012.

We are really excited by the lineup of speakers who will cover issues related to diversity in social media. It’s an angle that not often addressed in the fast paced world of social media.


Speakers and Sessions

  • Introduction – Kate Carruthers from Social Innovation Sydney
  • Mark Pesce: ‘The Next Billion Seconds
    Mark Pesce is an inventor, writer, entrepreneur, educator and broadcaster.
  • Ben Mulcahy: ‘Gay & Lesbian Australia loves technology
    Ben is Managing Director of Pink Media Group, Australia’s Gay & Lesbian media network.
  • Tim Noonan: ‘Sexuality, Diversity and People With Disabilities: Creating Accessible Innovation for Social Inclusion
    Tim is a voice, Usability and Accessibility consultant, inspirational conference speaker and the founder of Vocal Branding Australia. Over the last 25 years Tim has blended his interests in technology, speech, telephony and accessibility, to bring printed and online information to life for people who are blind or print disabled. In 2011 Tim was engaged by the NSW Electoral Commission as the lead Voice Usability Designer and accessibility expert for iVote – regarded as the most advanced and successful telephone and online voting implementation in the world.
  • Tom Dawkins: ‘How peerfunding can help you launch your innovative projects
    Tom is the co-founder of fundraising platform StartSomeGood.com and before that was founder of Vibewire and the Vibewire Hub. In-between he was Social Media Director for Ashoka and HopeLab in the US. He’s also run music festivals, Burning Man theme camps, conferences, film festivals and indie magazines and advised corporations, governments and non-profits on communications and community-engagement strategies.
  • Brodie West: ‘Engaging with a Gay Man: Why you need to work for their pink dollars
    Brodie has been with DNA magazine since 2010. DNA is Australia’s best-selling magazine for gay men. He has an extensive knowledge of social media, and has helped integrate the DNA business model with their social media marketing strategy. Brodie also handles the magazine’s key advertising accounts and has worked with many brands to reach the DNA target market through traditional channels, as well as through events and product launches.
  • Mikey Leung: ‘Digital Storytelling – a new collaborative network of storytellers
    Mikey, a guidebook author, ex-journalist, video producer and WordPress web designer, and founder of the new Digital story tellers network. He’ll tell the story of how we’re using storytelling at BushTV to create engagement, interaction and take full use of the interactivity of today’s multimedia tools.
  • Amanda Keeling: ‘Diversity and Distance: How technology has changed the notion of community and the way we do business
    Amanda is on the Board of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Business Association and is the Director of Media and Communications. She is also on the board of Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras and currently chairs the SGLMG Community Engagement Committee. Amanda holds a Masters in Communication Studies, a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) and Diploma in Project Management. Working as a media and communications consultant, Amanda’s experience ranges from marketing, research, strategy and business development, to client relations, production, media and communications.
  • Peter Urmson: ‘Creative vs. Data Analytics
    Peter has been the CEO of the Online Marketing Group and recently sold that business and merged it into Fairfax Media. He is now the GM across the Online Marketing Group, all of Classifieds across Domain, MyCareer, Drive, General Classifieds and Trader both print and digital. Prior to this he was General Manger for Domain.com.au. He has also worked as CEO across Returnity, an Email Marketing and Data Analytics Agency and also The Population, Australia’s first Social Media agency, where he integrated that business into C4 a web development agency.
  • Davy Knittle: ‘The Accidental Bully: Asking Queer Questions
    Davy Knittle is a 2011-2012 Thomas J. Watson Fellow, at work on an international research project entitled Cities in Transition: Identity, Narrative and the Changing Urban Landscape, which has taken him to Canada, Ecuador and now to Australia. In the States, he’s worked as a diversity workshop facilitator for many groups including the National Association of Independent Schools.
  • Gavin Heaton: ‘Making Space for Quiet Voices
    Gavin is the author of Servant of Chaos, one of Australia’s leading marketing blogs and is the co-publisher (with Drew McLellan) of the ground-breaking collaborative marketing book series, Age of Conversation. A social business strategist, Gavin has worked in agencies (leading the global digital strategy for McDonald’s) and on the client side (SAP, IBM). He also works with young people as president of local non-profit organisation, Vibewire.
  • Kim McGuire: ‘Fuelling innovation in accessibility: How diversity in abilities enables better design
    Kim is a user experience designer and accessibility advocate within the Westpac Group. She is passionate about delivering experiences that are considerate of the challenges people face on a daily basis, and believes strongly that without diversity, the World would be a boring place
  • Closing Remarks – Rami Mandow from The Community Brave Foundation

Looking forward to seeing you at ourDiversity in Innovation – World Social Media Day.


We would like to thank Vibewire for providing the venue, Rolls on Oxford for the delicious food. We’d also like to thank all of our guest speakers for taking the time to share their ideas and passion with us.

Please feel free to join us for a drink and a quick bite at The Pump House after this event.

Opening speaker & logistics for Social Innovation Sydney Unconference 12 May

We’re looking forward to seeing everyone at the unconference tomorrow.


We will be kicking off at 10am in Central Lecture Block (E19) with a talk about Social Innovation as Storytelling from Davy Knittle

Bio: Davy Knittle – is a 2011-2012 Thomas J. Watson Fellow at work on a project entitled: Cities in Transition – Identity, Narrative and the Changing Urban Landscape. He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Wesleyan University, and a documentary poet whose work can be found in Swink, 580 Split, Euphony and Radius, among others. In Sydney, he is conducting research with Food Connect and with the City of Sydney’s Cycling Team.  You can find Davy on Twitter @versetheft

Social Innovation as Storytelling

Each resident of an urban community relies on a key set of spaces, people and experiences to define their city within the greater expanse of the urban framework. Those experiences – in grocery stores, in school playgrounds and at frequently traveled intersections help those residents to tell stories about who they are and how they contribute to their community. When new features become part of their regular practice of urban life, the story they use to explain and guide themselves changes. As we develop social enterprises that rely on drawing in and retaining new constituent communities, how do we build ourselves into the central story held by an individual? a family? a community? How can we use the principles of storytelling to develop and maintain new, strong communities as we expand the client base of our social enterprises?


A few logistics items to cover:

  • At 10am the opening session will be at the UNSW Kensington Central Lecture Block – Building E19 (see pdf map here)
  • From 11am the remaining sessions will continue over at the UNSW Design Studios – Matthews Building F23
  • We will break for lunch at 12.30pm
  • We expect to wrap up the day at about 4pm
  • Please bring your own water bottle (coffee is available nearby if you need it)

If you get lost or need help getting in please Tweet to @sibsyd & we’ll come and find you

Talking Sydney – Social Innovation Unconference 12 Nov 2011

Talking Sydney:

Sydney is a dynamic city. It is diverse in cultures, rich in natural beauty and growing at a fast pace.

This growth presents as many opportunities as it does problems around providing servcies such as transport, energy and water as well as access to housing, education, food and medical care.

Join Social Innovation Sydney at the Unconference to explore the opportunities presented in our growing city.

More details to come.

Also, please note that the location may change, waiting on confirmation of a new and exciting venue.

Register Now for SIBSYD Unconference

Thank-you to our ‘lightning talks’ speakers #sibsyd

Huge thanks to the speakers at our ‘lightning talks’ at our recent unconference, we really appreciate their efforts in sharing their remarkable and inspiring stories:

2011’s great start preps community for the May BarCamp – coming?

Thanks again for being a part of all of the recent Social Innovation Sydney events.

It’s been a great start to 2011, a stronger community, connections, collaborations and opportunities for us all to strengthen Social Innovation in Sydney.

The February Barcamp was a great success: recap here

The sold out Economics of Happiness film screening brought together a new section of the community, & the panel gave us their unique perspective on localisation:panel film details
Sorry to the people who had to sit in the aisle (didn’t want to turn people away). It was great to see so many people keen to be a part.

The StartUp Camp over the weekend brought together 25 budding and experienced Social Entrepreneurs to work on Social Innovations. Great people, fluid content and fun learning combined to leave us all motivated and ready for the next steps in building our social enterprises. Wrap-up details here

The May edition of our now famous Social Innovation BarCamp #sibsyd.

We’re still working on the finer details but, as a past participant, thought we’d let you know to ensure your space as the spots are filling fast.

Register here

The Social Innovation Sydney team are definitely receiving very positive feedback from some of you and from the world wide community. We’re happy to see the impact and know it’s only just beginning.

See you at the next BarCamp.

Contact us at info@socialinnovationsydney.org www.socialinnovationsydney.org

Elevator Pitch for Social Innovation Sydney #sibsyd

One of the exercises that we did with the group at the recent Social Innovation Startup Camp was to create elevator pitches for our ideas.

In the spirit of this Michelle has been working on an elevator pitch for Social Innovation Sydney. We’d love to get some feedback on it:

“Hi, I’m Michelle and I’m from Social Innovation Sydney, a platform where changemakers meet to discuss the issues and solutions; and also to create new models with a social and/or environmental benefit.

We predict, based on overseas examples and trends, the tools available, the successful sustainable business models that can be copied and the increasing urgency of the environmental and social issues that we now face that social innovation will grow exponentially within the next 2-5 years.

Currently, the Social Innovation movement in Australia is quite fragmented, struggles to define itself, and has therefore not been able to provide the tools, support or people required to collaborate for increased growth.

Social Innovation Sydney is a series of events, gatherings and an online community that is bringing people together to create an eco-system for this movement to grow, use and share resources, support and empower each other.

Creating this space continues to demonstrate new opportunities, solid businesses, strong connections and collaborations.

We’re looking for people who connect with this message, who see the potential and opportunities in this movement to bring about positive social and environmental change and to encourage them to feel free to express themselves, to pursue projects and find solutions for the issues that they are passionate about.”

The Guest Panel for the Economics of Happiness, Sydney screening

While the Economics of Happiness film explores the effects of economic globalisation it also uncovers solutions through localisation (tickets and details here).

We would like to introduce the special guests who will take part in the panel following the screening:

Helena Norberg-Hodge is the co-director of the Economics of Happiness. Helena is the founder and director of the International Society for Ecology and Culture (ISEC) and its predecessor, the Ladakh Project. She is the author of Ancient Futures: Learning from Ladakh and co-author of Bringing the Food Economy Home. Her articles have appeared in numerous journals such as The EcologistResurgence, and YES! magazine. Norberg- Hodge’s ground-breaking work in the Himalayan region of Ladakh is internationally recognized, and earned her the Right Livelihood Award.

Jon Dee
was the 2010 NSW Australian of the Year. He is the Founder & Managing Director of Do Something! and in 1991 he founded Planet Ark with Pat Cash. Projects initiated by Jon have inspired millions of Australians into making positive social and environmental change. Recently you may have seen Jon on various news broadcasts as a key advocate of the banning phosphates in Laundry Detergents campaign. Aldi have now agreed to phase out by 2013, at no added cost to the consumer.

Gareth Johnston, Managing Director of the Live Local Foundation, Non Exec Director. GEM Financial Group Ltd, Co Founder Future Ready P/L, Community Beekeeper.  Gareth believes resilience is critical for community. He enjoys living in a diverse healthy community in inner Sydney, practising his “local living.”


Lauren Anderson, Collaborative Consumption. Lauren is an Innovation strategist and project manager for CC Lab. She played an instrumental role in building the Collaborative Consumption brand and the growing movement.
Lauren has worked with a range of cutting-edge organizations in the Social Innovation sector, including the Australian Social Innovation Exchange, Project Australia and the Brightest Young Minds Foundation, as well as recently the Vibewire Enterprise Hub.


Make sure to purchase your tickets soon as we have limited capacity.
Tickets here

some sage insight from @johnquiggin: Why do social networks work?

Here are some thoughts from back in 2006, when Facebook was still the province of early adopters, from Professor John Quiggin. This piece was originally published on Crooked Timber, reproduced here with kind permission from Prof. Quiggin.

He raises some interesting questions about why people participate in the creation of goods by means of social production and the implications of this for business and government. It is still worth thinking about this today, especially in the context of social innovation.

Why do social networks work?

by JOHN QUIGGIN on MAY 30, 2006

Yochai Benkler’s The Wealth of Networks: How Social Production transforms Markets and Freedom is full of interesting things to discuss, but the point that interests me most is the question of why people contribute to social production and what economic and political implications it has, for states as well as for markets and freedom. Benkler previously discussed the same question in Sharing Nicely, and I’ll talk a bit about this as well.

To the extent that there is a conventional wisdom about these things, it’s Eric Raymond’s idea of a gift economy, derived from his participation in the open source software movement. Raymond focuses exclusively on reputation as a motive for contributing to social production, seeking to assimilate all other motives (such as craft values) to reputation. It’s precisely this kind of totalising logic, I’ll argue, that is absent from social production.

On the contrary, there are a wide variety of motives which might lead people to contribute to networked social capital, for example by participating in various aspects of blogging (make posts and comments, linking and blogrolling, improving software, various kinds of metablogging). Possible motives include altruism, self-expression, advocacy of particular political or social views, display of technical expertise, and a desire for social interaction. Particularly in relation to a collective, and largely anonymous, product like Wikipedia, Raymond’s central focus on reputation does not fit the facts.

As against these various motives, there are the two standard methods that have been relied on to deliver most information production and innovation for the past 150 years: markets and bureaucracies.

Benkler discusses markets, and the associated profit motives, at some length, making the point that narrowly economic motives tend to crowd out alternative forms of motivation. He mentions the classic work of Titmuss on blood donations and some other examples to show that monetary and social-psychological motives are likely to conflict, rather than reinforcing each other. By contrast, different social-psychological motives are usually complementary or at least mutually consistent.

Why is this? At a superficial level, it’s obvious that people act differently, and are expected to act differently, in the context of relationships mediated by money than in other contexts. Behavior that would be regarded favorably in a non-monetary context is regarded as foolish or even reprehensible in a monetary context.

One of the most important general differences relates to rationality and reciprocity. In a non-market context, careful calculation of costs and benefits and an insistence on exact reciprocity is generally deprecated. By contrast, in market contexts, the first rule is never to give more than you get.

This rule applies in market contexts but not in social contexts, where such careful calculation is, as Benkler notes, generally deprecated, because markets create opportunities for systematic arbitrage that do not apply in other contexts. In an environment where exchanges are not carefully calculated, a trader who consistently gives slightly short weight can amass substantial profits. If trading partners assume honourable behavior, none will suffer enough to notice, but eventually arbitragers will drive out their less calculating trading partners.

Similar points can be made about other motives. There are a whole range of sales tricks designed to exploit altruism, friendship, desire for self-expression and so on. Hence, to prosper, or even survive, in a market context, it is necessary to adopt a view that ‘business is business’, and to (consciously or otherwise) play a role as a participant in the market economy that is quite distinct from what might be conceived as one’s ‘real self’. This is a prime example of what Goffman calls an obligatory role.

The crucial feature of economic motives in a money economy is not that they are less noble or desirable than alternatives such as desire for fame, but that a money economy provides a total system of rationality, from which most of the motives associated with social production are excluded.

Markets are not the only total system of rationality that operate in a modern society. bureaucracy and the state have a logic of their own. For most of the 20th century, the central issue of politics and economics was the question of where the boundary between markets and bureaucracies (public and private) should be drawn.

Benkler largely ignores the state. As he says (p. 16) ‘In much of [my discussion], the state plays no role or is perceived as playing a primarily negative role, in a way that is alien to the progressive branches of liberal political thought’. But this position overlooks the critical fact that both the Internet and the World Wide Web were developed primarily by state agencies or state-funded institutions (DARPA, NSF, the university sector, CERN, NCSA and so on). Yet this outcome was not the product of rational bureaucratic planning. Rather, like Topsy, the Net and the Web ‘just growed’.

Like market rationality, bureaucratic rationality implies a complete specification of behavior When dealing with a representative of a bureaucracy, we (mostly) expect consistent application of rules, rather than an adherence to standard social norms such as ‘look after your family/mates before others”. Similarly, and more crucially, bureaucracies are supposed to allocate their resources to the achievement of specified goals, not to do things because they would be fun, or even socially beneficial. All of this seems to leave little room for social production. So how did the state come to give us the Internet? More significantly for our present purposes, what kinds of public policy will facilitate the further growth of social production and the wider distribution of its benefits?

I don’t have a complete answer to either question. However, some obvious implications run counter to current developments in policy.

First, if monetary returns are weakly, or even negatively correlated with the value of social production, there’s no reason to expect capital markets to do a good job in allocating resources to supporting innovation. It follows that the policy orientation of the past thirty years, in which increasing reliance has been placed on capital markets, is going in the wrong direction. The examples considered by Benkler are illustrative. Both blogs and wikis have their roots in the late 1990s, a time when capital markets were splashing hundreds of billions of dollars around on Internet-related projects. Most of these projects came to nothing, while blogs and wikis developed with little or no venture capital money to help them along.

A second implication is that the policies of New Public Management, which attempt to tighten bureaucratic accountability and focus on competitive disciplines and measurable outcomes may be misguided. Rather than seeking to drive people harder in the search for increased productivity, government macro-economic policy should be oriented towards making room for creativity and facilitating its expression. Similarly, while competition has its place, public policy should be at least as much concerned with promoting co-operation. The assumptions we have had about the competitive nature of innovation are, therefore, undersupported in the new environment in which we find ourselves. If governments want to encourage the maximum amount of innovation in social production then they need to de-emphasize competition and emphasize creativity and cooperation.

Source: Crooked Timber 2006, reproduced here with kind permission from Prof. John Quiggin