Tedx is coming to Providence on April 15. I recently met with one of its co-founders, Peter Haas, to discuss the upcoming event.
What is TEDX?
TEDx is an independently organized TED style event operated under a license from TED. According to TED:
“TEDx was created in the spirit of TED’s mission, “ideas worth spreading.” The program is designed to give communities, organizations and individuals the opportunity to stimulate dialogue through TED-like experiences at the local level. At TEDx events, a screening of TEDTalks videos — or a combination of live presenters and TEDTalks videos — sparks deep conversation and connections. TEDx events are fully planned and coordinated independently, on a community-by-community basis.”
What impact will having TEDXProvidence have? What do you hope to achieve by bringing it here?
The first TEDXProvidence event is scheduled for April 15, 2012 and has been sold-out for weeks. Providence already has a few fantastic ideas conferences, such as: Business Innovation Factory’s Summit on Collaboration (now in its 8th season; aka, BIF-8), the Brown and RISD student-led conference on socially conscious design, A Better World by Design (celebrating it’s 5th year in 2012), and the recently sold-out SEEED, a national summit on building and strengthening social enterprise ecosystems and communities; and TEDXProvidence will allow us to explore in depth the great work that is going on, specifically, in this city. TEDxProvidence aims to highlight the fantastic and inspirational stories coming out of Providence. We want to be the local ideas festival for the city, and builds on our city’s reputation as a global leader for being able to coalesce student and professional populations in order to both celebrate and create real change.
Like all of the other conferences previously mentioned, TEDXProvidence plans on serving as a platform for bringing students, academics and professionals from the private and public sectors together.
Please check out our web site, www.tedxprovidence.com. And follow us on Twitter at @TEDxProvidence or through our Twitter hashtag to follow the stream of dialogue coming out of the upcoming conference at #tedxpvd.
Who are the other players involved in TEDXProvidence?
The organizers are myself, Tino Chow, Caroline Mailloux, and Catherine Laine. We have a number of volunteers. We’ve gotten a lot of the support from our community from local food trucks (e.g., Fancheezical, Rocket Fine Streetfood and Mijos Tacos); Twobolt our printing sponsor; Providence Monthly our advertising sponsor; and VideoZ Corporate Film & Video Productions is doing our filming.
How did you get involved in the TED Movement?
I am a TED Senior Fellow, so I have been going to TED for several years on that fellowship. TED fellows have specific projects they are doing to make the world a better place. For example, my senior fellowship project has been training masons how to build earthquake resistant construction in Haiti. To date we’ve trained over 4000 masons.