What the arts can learn from Silicon Valley

While the arts sector faces challenges to secure funding and capture audiences in the digital age, the leading hub for technology and entrepreneurship, Silicon Valley may hold the key to innovation.
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Image: Facebook office Menlo Park, Silican Valley

It’s challenging to contemplate the future predictions that will change our world. The UN is predicting that up to 47% of middle class jobs will become redundant over the next decade due to robotics and new technologies. We will grow from three to eight billion connected humans online. How will this effect creativity and innovation?

To investigate these changes and challenges, I had just had the great privilege of attending and performing at the Executive Program of Singularity University based in Silicon Valley. Founded by inventor and futurist Ray Kurzweil and XPrize Founder Peter Diamandis, leaders across all sectors from over 24 countries attended the intensive one week program.

SU’s mission is to educate, inspire and empower leaders to apply exponential technologies to address humanity’s grand challenges. We learnt from some of the leading thinkers in the world about topics including artificial intelligence, 3D printing, driverless cars, nanotechnology, the future of work, innovation and biotechnology.

While tech entrepreneurs pour their riches into the next big technology thing, we artists tend to struggle to embrace these technologies​ and stumble when trying to figure out how to build a fan base and monetise our work in a world without theatres and record stores.

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Tania de Jong
About the Author
Tania de Jong AM is a leading Australian soprano, inspirational speaker, social entrepreneur, spiritual journey woman and creative innovation catalyst. She founded Creative Universe, Creativity Australia, Music Theatre Australia, Pot-Pourri and The Song Room and works with diverse communities through the ‘With One Voice’ choir social inclusion programs. Tania sings around the world as a soloist and with her group Pot-Pourri releasing 7 CDs. She is Founder and Executive Producer of Creative Innovation Global. Tania’s TED Talk How Singing Together Changes The Brain has sparked international interest. Tania has just released her solo CD Heaven on Earth. www.creativeuniverse.com.au www.taniadejong.com www.ci2015.com.au www.creativityaustralia.org.au