2014 SXSW Interactive Session Spotlight: Permission Engines - Facilitating Creativity

Written by Megan Collyer | Friday, Feb 28, 2014

At SXSW 2014, Will Chase tells what businesses can learn from groups like Burning Man

Will Chase has been part of the Burning Man team for 11 years. He currently serves on the Communications Team. His focus has been to understand the community and the cultural dynamics that make Burning Man tick, and to reflect and amplify those dynamics back to the community and the world at large. At SXSW Interactive, he’ll host “Permission Engines - Facilitating Creativity,” the focus of this installment of the Session Spotlight. Attendees can connect with Chase via @willchase prior to his Saturday, March 8th panel.

SXSW: What does your panel address?
Chase: How do organizations such as Burning Man, Google, Maker Faire and The Flux Foundation enable people to consistently make such incredible inventions? What can businesses learn from these wildly creative and successful groups? By creating permission engines.

SXSW: Is this a topic you’ve spoken about previously?
Chase: I've spoken on this topic at various talks about Burning Man to a variety of audiences. People invariably respond to it with great curiosity, interest and wonder - they're often inspired to attend Burning Man as a result.

SXSW: Who else will be joining you for this panel?
Chase: Robert Wong is the Vice President of Creative at Google Creative Labs, where they allow for 20% time, a built-in permission engine to enable workers to take on pet projects they're interested in. Upwards of 60% of Google's products have come about as a result of 20% time. Louise Glasgow represents Maker Faire, the premier showcase for doers, creators and makers, working independently on inspired projects of all types. Jess Hobbs is co-founder of the non-profit Flux Foundation art collective, dedicated to collaborative art efforts, wherein newcomers to the experience of creating art are offered the opportunity to learn valuable skills as they work on large-scale interactive artworks. Often these people go on to create their own art teams and works of art.

SXSW: Who should attend your panel discussion?
Chase: This session will be valuable to anybody interested in looking for novel ways of fostering inspired creativity in their employees - or anybody, for that matter.

SXSW: Will anyone be able to follow your session? What will they need to know going into the panel?
Chase: SXSW registrants will be able to follow the discussion of this topic, regardless of one's experience with the concepts involved.

SXSW: What excites you most about hosting this session at the 2014 SXSW Interactive Festival?
Chase: We're excited to share the tangible, real-world results of implementing a permission engine in your organizational structure, because it amplifies the creativity of any individual or organization, while leaving people happy, inspired and confident -- and excited for their next project -- as a result of their creative efforts.

SXSW: Have you previously attended SXSW Interactive? What did you think?
Chase: I attended SXSW Interactive in 2010, and it was an incredible and eye-opening experience on a number of levels - professionally and personally.

Watch this website for more installments of the 2014 SXSW Interactive Session Spotlight. Click here for the complete list of programming for March in Austin. For tips on interesting sessions to attend, visit the new Recommendation page. Register now to attend “Permission Engines - Facilitating Creativity” and other incredible programming at SXSW Interactive 2014.