Creative Disruptions, Distruptive Creatives

FCAD Forum for Cultural Strategies

2017 Summer Institute:

#CreativeDisruptions, Disruptive Creatives

Date: May 23-24, 2017

Time: 9am to 5pm

Location: The Learning Zone Centre,

Ryerson University, Toronto ON


As we enter the era of ‘augmented humanity’ where technological innovations, according to tech futurists and tech companies, will make us better human beings, there are a plethora of ways in which discourses around disruption are wanting.  Too often the fetishization of consumer tech products obscure a multitude of issues that ‘technological progress’ do not solve. Quite easily one could argue the extraction of coltan has dramatically disrupted the lives of Congolese youth, yet such terminology is rarely the language deployed in these contexts. #CreativeDisruptions, Disruptive Creatives, is a Summer Research Institute invested in exploring how we might become more creative in our analyses, our research and our knowledge mobilization. At this contemporary moment as the algorithmic age transforms our cognitive habits, we need to move beyond technological disruption as the template for how we imagine innovation and ‘progress’.  We are in dire need of research and analysis which pivot away from some of the assumptions that underpin our technologies, away from the computational bias of Silicon Valley.

Our 2017 theme for the FCAD Forum’s inaugural Summer Institute explores how we might envision methods, frameworks, and paradigms that encourage analysis of the creative sector that intertwines technological, demographic, financial and political concerns into fresh multilayered approaches. The following questions have provided some direction in our approach:

What does the language of the 4th industrial revolution produce and how might this positioning of technological change orient or obscure the trajectory of our research and analyses?

Given that one can read the social, environmental, political and economic impacts of exponential technologies as deeply intertwined what other kinds of analyses of our contemporary moment can we produce? In what ways can we creatively disrupt theories of disruption and exponential change?

If we centred the Artist and Creatives in our conversations around technological disruption how might this approach alter the ways in which we think about disruption within the creative industries?

By dividing the Summer Institute into seminars, workshops, keynote lectures, and creative events we seek to cultivate a dynamic awareness of the multiple ways in which we might facilitate scholarly engagements across the cultural industries.  We explore design thinking, co-design, machine learning, knowledge mobilization and several other theories, methods and tactics to both reframe ‘wicked problems’ and develop new directions in research.