We are excited that the project started to get attention from leaders in the BBC and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, as well as journalists writing Media Power Monitor and academics in the Global PSM Experts Network.
We met again in Warsaw January 6–8, 2017 for a project meeting. During the two days in the Polish capital we firstly discussed book chapters we have submitted for a Peter Lang’s collection titled “Public Service Media Renewal and Digital Network Challenges”. Our chapters will present the first findings from our study; I have written about the successful and innovative high technology clusters in capital of Estonia and Lizzie about predictive analytics and behavioural targeting as a potential way of nuancing the delivery of public service content.
We discussed plans and milestones for the project to do with data analysis, future events such as European Media Management Association conference in Ghent (May 2017) as well as preparations for the field trips to Copenhagen (February 2017), Austin (March 2017) and Detroit (April 2017).
Next we conducted field work observations of winter festival “Otwarta Ząbkowska” (Open Ząbkowska) – an open air street event involving animators, artists, clubs, NGOs, municipalities and theatres in the Praga district of Warsaw. The weather was extremely cold, - 13 Degrees, cold enough for ice sculpturing.
The Praga district is a good example of creative initiatives growing in the Polish capital. Later in the Spring we will conduct interviews in Warsaw and London and this will end the period of data gathering.
Finally, we have made first preparations for the ‘MAKER’ event which will be organized at OMEARA – venue set up by the lead singer of the band Mumford & Sons (June 2017). The event is to construct models for public service media for and by Generation Z.
The MaRS Innovation District in Downtown Toronto is one of the oldest high technology clusters with the exception of Silicon Valley in the US.
MaRS is also one of the largest and highest concentrated clusters with many small to medium-sized businesses. In common with the clusters we have visited In Cambridge/Boston US, they are focused on generating social impact as much as wealth. They say they bring together "educators, researchers, social scientists, entrepreneurs and business experts under one roof”. I visited other innovation centres and co-working spaces, but MaRS certainly was one of the most ‘corporate’ looking with it’s sleek glass-sided high rise towers.
Last September (2016) I interviewed the George Spezza, who is Head of Business Growth Services for the City of Toronto as part of our trips collecting data in North America and Europe for the project. He believes Canada needs to expand its ‘traditional’ business links with America to include Europe.
The city of Toronto is interested in worked with the city of London in the UK to build links as there are common interests and a trade delegation from London had been visiting that week, to see the MaRS Innovation District, and to make links. FCAD, Ryerson University’s Faculty of Communication and Design has a new partnership with London South Bank University’s School of Arts and The Creative Industries. The two universities are undertaking joint research into - for example - virtual reality and hyper-local news–gathering. Partnership working, and particularly trans-atlantic partnerships where there is a five hour time difference requires new kinds of communication techniques. We are finding this works when there is a common work culture. As we work through the data the specific elements of what that is should emerge.