Thanks for introducing this line of discussion. Brighton Fuse, a recent
study (apologies if I've mentioned it before) on arts & humanities and tech
From the website:
The findings identified a new category of business, referred to as
'superfused'. Superfused firms are continuously innovating business models,
services, and products and fusing technology, the arts, humanities, and
design with creative, digital, and IT skills. These companies show
double-digit rates of growth in turnover and employment, despite the
Supporting superfused business
The report radically challenged conventional wisdom about the importance of
arts and humanities to the creative and digital economy and points to a
future business model that could be further developed nationwide. It also
suggested that government intervention to support small and medium
enterprise in this sector might be better targeted at the later stages of
cluster development, giving it time to establish and provide support once
its growth needs have been identified.
Entrepreneurial key players
Findings showed that the entrepreneurial key players are just as likely to
have an arts and humanities (A&H) background as science, technology,
engineering or maths (STEM). They network frequently, place great emphasis
on creativity and collaboration and bring an A&H skillset that enables them
to succeed at problem solving, innovating, and adding value in the creative
Policy relevance and implications for education and skills
The fusion of arts, humanities and technology knowledge and skills is
producing high-growth, superfused businesses that are leading the expansion
of the creative economy. However, there is a constraint on the development
of interdisciplinary talent. We came to the following conclusions.
Arts and humanities skills are helping drive economic growth, and
should not just be seen as a luxury supported by science, technology,
engineering and maths.
Interdisciplinary skills are key to the continued growth of the
creative digital economy. Higher Education (HE) funders should review the
extent to which systems supporting education discourage interdisciplinary
work and keep digital and creative skills in silos. Deep disciplinary
expertise needs to be balanced with the ability to draw on expertise across
To address the 'fused' skills shortage, Local Enterprise Partnerships
(LEPs) and Sector Skills Councils (SSCs) should work with small firms to
articulate their demands for skills and training and communicate these to
HE and FE institutions. The higher education system needs to be more
innovative in its course design and models to meet the needs and support
the continuous upgrading of skills of the CDIT sector.
Innovation policy needs to reflect the fact that the UK is
predominantly a service economy, where innovation is driven by design,
process innovations, software-intensive new service offerings, and softer
organisational and marketing changes.
What policymakers and LEPs can do to influence growth in existing SMEs
Although difficult to create artificial clusters from scratch, evidence
suggested that once up and running bottom-up policy initiatives can provide
effective support in removing constraints.
Policy makers and LEPs should consider policy interventions to improve
infrastructure, address barriers, improve co-ordination and investment,
poor labour and commercial markets. Even in our digital age, the advantages
to local organisations working at a variety of scales and in close
proximity remain significant.
A diverse ecosystem of private firms, together with public sector and
university involvement, can assist in reusing and diffusing knowledge
within a local context – particularly if independent 'brokers' (such as
Wired Sussex) are able to assist in co-ordination to generate mutual
economic benefits and champion a cluster's sense of identity and brand to
regional and international audiences.
Innovation is a process of creating value, but firms and local regions
also need to be able to capture value in order to prosper and survive.
Innovation policies should address the relatively low emphasis given to
value capture compared to value creation.
How firms capture value is a key part of their business model. A
significant number of superfused firms engage in all modes of innovation,
including staff training, new products and services, new processes, content
for copyright, new code, and new business models. Policymakers have a key
opportunity to address this to support the continued high growth of the
UK's digital creative economy.
The project has successfully revealed some surprising and informative
insights that advance our understanding of the processes of collective
innovation in a modern, dynamic industrial cluster.
On 13 Mar 2017 19:18, "roger malina" <email@example.com> wrote:
> scott hartley has his new book, the fuzzy and the techie, coming out
> in april and i asked him
> to tell us a bit about it= and engage him in our discussion
> one thing of interest here is that scott brings the perspective of
> venture capital= and as we discussed
> with john maeda one of the things that has ripened the stem to steam
> discussion is the convergence
> of interests of the arts and tech community, the academics with the
> growing number of Phds in art and design
> as well as the corporate community with its call for "t" shaped
> individuals a la 'ideo'- you will remember
> maeda's comments a few years back that venture capital companies were
> buying up design companies
> combined with the arguements from research in creativity and
> innovation ( see robert root bernsteins
> work on arts avocations of succesful STEM professionals
> what is interesting to see is the development of these reciprocal
> arguments with the arts/design/humanities
> in service of STEM, but also STEM in service of the arts/desiogn/humanities
> scott argues below that products and companies are those that
> contextualize the new tools within a problem of real importance
> and i guess i would add to that that these new tools help us build a
> world we actually want to live in !!
> scott - our discussion seeks to provide concrete evidence that stem to
> steam has desirable outcomes
> ahead of reading your book maybe you can give us one or two really
> good exemplars !!
> roger malina
> Dear Friends and Colleagues,
> Roger was kind enough to suggest that I post here for all of you a
> quick note about my forthcoming book with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt,
> The Fuzzy and the Techie (Link: http://Bit.ly/FuzzyTechie). My book
> looks at this faux opposition between STEM and the Liberal Arts, how
> this ought to be a conversation about bringing together the "two
> cultures." The terms Fuzzy and Techie are used at Stanford University
> as lighthearted monikers for those who study the arts, humanities and
> social sciences, and those who study the computer sciences or
> engineering. Obviously though, much is shared between them.
> As a Silicon Valley venture capitalist, the observation I've had is
> that the best products and companies are those that contextualize the
> new tools within a problem of real importance. And often the critical
> self inquiry, creativity, passion, etc. to find and refine that
> problem against which technology can be applied, is something
> holistic, learned through broad study rather than narrow vocational
> focus on the tools alone. Therefore my book argues for the vital
> technical skills, but also for the breadth of exposure from the
> Liberal Arts. This generally means adopting technology in the
> classroom, but doing so in a blended fashion where the teacher becomes
> coach, and much can be shared amongst the students.
> STEAM is a perfect example of this notion of bringing together both
> the fuzzy and the techie, accepting the need for technical skills but
> also embracing the breadth of exposure and holistic learning from the
> Liberal Arts. I wanted to share it with this community.
> Moreover, as our technical tools move toward higher levels of
> abstraction, closer and closer to natural language processing, and as
> my engineering colleagues say, "off the metal," these broad complex
> problem solving and communication skills become of vital importance,
> and the the truly non-redundant human skills in an increasingly
> automated world.
> I welcome your thoughts and feedback, and please pre-order a copy of the
> Scott Hartley
> Scott Hartley
> The Fuzzy and the Techie (Coming April 25th!)
> Scott Hartley is venture capitalist and author. In 2016 he was a
> finalist for the Financial Times and McKinsey & Company's Bracken
> Bower Prize for the best business book proposal by an author under 35.
> He has served as a Presidential Innovation Fellow at the White House,
> a Partner at Mohr Davidow Ventures (MDV), and a Venture Partner at
> Metamorphic Ventures. Prior to venture capital, Scott worked at
> Google, Facebook, and Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet & Society.
> He has been a contributing author at MIT Press, and has written for
> the Financial Times, Forbes, Inc., Foreign Policy, and the Boston
> Review. He holds three degrees from Stanford and Columbia, has
> finished six marathon and Ironman 70.3 triathlons. He is a Term Member
> at the Council on Foreign Relations,
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