This February, fans of big ideas gathered in the State Library of Queensland for the second edition of TEDxSouthBank, a TEDx event dedicated to Queensland, Australia’s ideas worth spreading. The theme of the event was “#ChallengeAccepted” and the team behind TEDxSouthBank put in effort to make sure talks, activities and discussion centered on challenges for a more creative, more innovative, more daring Queensland.
In a first for TEDxSouthBank, all of the talks were interpreted live into Australian Sign Language (Auslan) and the livestream included picture in picture signing so that “members of the Deaf community around Australia and New Zealand (who also use Auslan) could watch a TEDx event live in their own language,” says organizer Juanita Wheeler.
The event also featured a talk completely in Auslan by Drisana Levitz-Gray, a Deaf rights activist who was named Young Australian of the Year for her work advocating for Auslan education in Australia.
When attendees weren’t being wowed by talks, there was plenty to do at TEDxSouthBank, from sampling food and drink provided by local businesses to taking a power nap in a futuristic “nap pod” donated by a tech-forward hotel, NEXT Brisbane. University of Queensland Business School asked attendees to challenge education norms with puzzle-heavy adventures and Deaf Services Queensland gave mini Auslan lessons during breaks.
Attendees also contributed to a “Before I die wall,” an “Ideas for a Better Queensland” wall and had their Instagram photos printed in real time with their #ChallengeAccepted and #ChallengeExecEd ideas thanks to an onsite photo printer.
By the time the event was over, 16 speakers and performers had shared their ideas for Brisbane and the world on the big stage and online – over 900 people had tuned into the livestream, says Wheeler, from places like France, Hong Kong, Italy and Japan.