The theme of ‘Co-Creation’ is very much in the air these days.
Co-Creation has been the spring board by which Derby Museums Trust is set to attract funding to regenerate Derby Silk Mill into a venue of which Derby will be proud. Co-Creation is also at the heart of ground breaking community development activity in some of the most challenging areas of Derby.
Co-Creation seems to have the power to unlock solutions that might be hidden from sight for someone working on their own.
What are the essential ingredients of Co-Creation? When is it applicable? What are its limits?
What better place to explore this than at Lunar21, which has had Co-Creation at its heart from the outset: the original Lunar Society was made up of a number of friends, industrialists, scientists and artists – who clearly had different backgrounds and disciplines which they used to explore ideas which they shared for mutual enlightenment; and by making Lunar21 open to the public, to explore 21st Century concerns, we have been keen to involve, yes, friends, industrialists, scientists and artists – and others with different backgrounds and disciplines so as to explore ideas.
Working across disciplines and interests was considered by Jim Dixon when he considered his working life “at the edge” in a Derby TEDx talk given in 2014.
Using his knowledge of environmental science, Jim quotes Howard Odum who, in 1971, noted the tendency for increased variety and diversity of species at the edges of one environmental condition where it met another, and combined to create something new – for example where the sea meets land. And thanks to the power of the moon, the tidal margins create a much larger range of ‘edge’ conditions than would otherwise be the case!
Can Lunar21 create a larger (tidal) range of edge conditions through discourse?
TED Talks are really good at giving a wide audience for expert insights but, as powerful as TED Talks can be, University of Derby’s Professor Philip Moriarty explains some of their limitations, ironically in his Derby TEDx talk he concludes that some of the best learning, when we really have to grapple with difficult concepts, can only happen when our brain hurts! The typical image of a thinker – as in Rodin’s sculpture – is someone on their own trying to puzzle their way out of a problem; in other words an introvert – someone who gets their energy from being alone and who can think on their own. However, for extroverts who need social stimulation to thrive, isolation won’t produce the results. Perhaps for these people they really do need to experience being on the edge of themselves, where they work with others to create something from the unique sharing environment?
Which, again, sounds just like Lunar21 where we have presentations followed by an open session, where we can enjoy questions, comments, and discussions from the floor. Could this be the Power of Co-Creation to examine the Power of Co-Creation?