TED Fellows Go Big at Swall Institute

In the spirit of the TED Fellows program mission to help “trailblazers spread world-changing ideas”, the second annual "Think Weird Go Big" workshop hosted 7 TED fellows to turn their creative visions into big realities.
By: Phanai Media Group
2011 TWGB workshop. (Photo by J. Adam Huggins)
2011 TWGB workshop. (Photo by J. Adam Huggins)
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Anita Doron
Adam Huggins
Jessica Green
David Gurman
Camilo Rodriguez Beltran
Eric Berlow
TED Fellow


Boston - Massachusetts - US

Sept. 19, 2011 - PRLog -- In an era of social media and a preponderance of virtual interaction, the Think Weird Go Big (TWBG) workshop capitalized on real human interaction. Set at the Swall Institute near Yosemite National Park, the inspirational setting of this sustainably designed incubation space provided a unique space for the sharing of creative thinking and problem solving. The workshop blended focused round-table discussions, cooking, and informal dialogue during hiking sessions along the pristine landscape of the national park. The intimacy, play and traditional face-to-face discourse fostered collaborations and deeper understandings that would otherwise be impossible.  

The TWGB workshops, organized by TED Fellows Eric Berlow (complexity scientist) and Jessica Green (microbial ecologist), facilitate the TED Fellows program mission to help “trailblazers spread world-changing ideas” through collective brainstorming and dialogue that encourages participants to articulate progressive new ideas and seek the input of fellow participants. In addition to Eric and Jessica, this year’s workshop included: filmmakers/explorers Anita Doron and J. Adam Huggins, change agent Tian Huggins, poet/pharmacist Iyeoka Ivie Okoawo, artist/designer David Gurman, and Camilo Rodriguez Beltran, a man who eludes all description.

This year’s ideas included:

- "Lyrics For Literacy", a project that creates a bridge of awareness and action to encourage the preservation of the Esan language, an endangered native dialect of Nigeria, through storytelling, proverbs and music.

-"Nodes for community-based participatory research", a project that intends to provoke community empowerment through science in developing countries.  The initiative follows the philosophy of a different science developed in Rodriguez-Beltran's upcoming documentary film "Autrement".

- “Data driven problem mapper”, a platform that helps simple systemic solutions emerge from complex problems using a combination of analytic and visualization tools.

- “Talk Derby to Me”, a film that explores the invisible human connections uniting us all.

The TED Fellows program helps world-changing innovators from around the globe amplify the impact of their remarkable projects and activities. Fellows are drawn from many disciplines that reflect the diversity of TED's members: technology, entertainment, design, the sciences, the humanities, the arts, NGOs, business and more.

More about the TED Fellows program: http://www.ted.com/pages/fellows
More about the Swall Institute: http://www.swall-institute.org/

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