#TEDxWeekendTaipei2019: APAC celebration of 10 years of TED

#TEDxWeekendTaipei2019 surpassed all my expectations! Taipei was one of five cities in the world selected by TED to help celebrate their 10 year anniversary with an exclusive event for TEDx organisers.

I travelled to Taiwan representing TEDxCanberra and joined TEDxers from 40+ nationalities. We learned from each other, gained new inspiration to create more and better events, networked like crazy, formed new strong friendships, and had the most amazing fun that those 3 days allowed.

49058527881_f21d554132_oTEDx is everywhere, it is decentralized to every city, but TEDxWeekend is kind of (an) anniversary, for (the) celebration of ten years of TEDx. So, this year we have five cities, five places, (and) TEDxWeekendTaipei is representing the of Asia region.

Luke Lee
TEDxAmbassador / TEDxWeekendTaipei Organizer / TEDxDaanPark Curator

Day 1

The opening ceremony included performances, navigation talks, and the introduction of the theme of “tribe”, and this concept stayed with us throughout the whole weekend. The venue was outstanding, roaring with loud music. And the presentations and performances were beautifully curated, including arts, technology and design.

49053134598_ab3f9a2b7a_oThe orientation sessions were all related to Innovation and Sustainability. “Digital Governance & Maker X”, for example, gave an interesting mix of government affairs and entrepreneurship stories; while “Regional Revitalization” gave us an insight of the strategies used by the local government when working with smaller communities, gaining trust and making them tourist destinations.

We were split on to groups to visit different local companies, only to reunite at the “welcome dinner“, a big show which featured traditional food, music and dances.

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Day 2

It started with the Breakout sessions, which included: TEDx workshop and community, Sustainable partnerships, Diversified presentations, About your motivation, TEDx Future, and the one I was able to attend, “Audience Experience”, which included great examples of how to produce high-quality events and pre-show engaging experience.

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49058519726_2a9b5c8b40_oWill Davis, TEDx Applications Manager @ TED, gave a short but powerful presentation called “state of the X”. After this, we had a “Cultural Experience” which took the participants on to different tours around the city at the same time. The logistics to make this happen in time were amazing, especially because all the groups had to finish their tours at the same time and destination, the National Museum, where the TEDx party was happening.

Day 3

After a quick visit to a temple, it was time for the “placemaking and community walk” activity, which took me to a street market, a small traditional temple, a hipster suburb, a ride in the local metro and I got my first taste of “bubble tea”.

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Idea Spotting” was the event’s last session. As usual food during lunch was new and outstanding, a large buffet with a wide variety of options. The session gave a few chances to jump on stage to share the experience we had during the event and some new ways to keep sharing ideas at future events. The event ended with a surprise goodbye performance from a local dance group.

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I was surprised to find many similarities and parallels between the culture of Taiwan and Peru, as well as in the city layout.

When I think about what made this event special, I think it was the human factor, the chance to creating new connections, partnerships, future collaborations, living through this experience together, emotion, the unexpected friendships that just happened and last to this day, that was the power of this event.

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And what is it about experiences like these that create such strong connections with a brand, with a moment, and with each other? It’s our human brain, we are emotional creatures, we feel! and that’s why marketing uses an emotional appeal in advertising, to create deep emotional connections in the mind of the customer.

If you ever get the chance, don’t miss a TED or TEDx event, you will feel it and you won’t regret it.

Congratulations again to TEDxTaipei on producing an excellent event. Some of the footage used was kindly provided by event organizers in the “2019 TEDxWeekendTaipei” channel.

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