And we're off! Tech Futures Lab's Master's programme kicks-off

Tuesday February 7 saw a diverse group of individuals gather at the Tech Futures Lab headquarters to start the new Master’s programme, a programme that is re-defining post-graduate study.

The first 12 weeks of the Master of Applied Practice – Technological Futures are immersive, with the candidates on-site at Tech Futures Lab attending a range of sessions. Then, for the following 38 weeks, they take the seed of an idea and grow it into their very own business plan.

Each of our 10 candidates is a challenger in their own way – they’re looking to disrupt traditional companies, themselves, or create a whole new type of business. All from very different backgrounds, they’ve begun the programme with the bud of an idea, a long-standing passion, or a desire to join the innovators of the world.

Big topics, bright minds and bringing ideas to life

With the overarching focus ‘Business Disruption and Innovation’, week one kicked-off with an introduction by Frances Valintine, the founder of Tech Futures Lab and a thought-leader in emerging and disruptive technologies.

With everyone gathered at the lab, Frances introduced the programme, what the candidates could expect over the weeks to come, and a key element: Kaupapa Maori. New Tech Futures Lab team members, Kiri Dell and Robyn Kamira, will implement the Kaupapa Maori philosophy in various ways during the programme and in doing so keep people thinking about ethical implications and the cultural component of what they're learning.

Frances led foundational sessions during the week, along with Priti Ambani and Roger Dennis. Priti is an expert in business disruption and co-founder of The Next Billion, while Roger advises companies around the globe about cultural transformation.

These three bright minds gave insight into the new world of business, including disruptors, the disrupted and new successful business models. These sessions shared the latest on big data, IoT, robots, virtual reality and the sharing economy, and made such topics tangible and relevant, encouraging new ways of thinking.

The latest news, ethical conversations and special guests

The morning Tech News Conversations are a chance to look at current events via an article, interview or video, and discuss what's happening around the globe and how it impacts us. Some topics this week included Jack Ma’s thoughts on trade and globalisation, Cards Against Humanity’s Super Bowl advert, universal basic income and the sustainability of Uber's business model.

This week also saw our first two guest speakers come in to share their experience and views on innovation. Sonya Crosby, Chief Innovation Officer at SKYCITY, revealed what it takes to innovate from within an already successful company, while Paul Cameron, CEO and Co-Founder of Kiwi start-up Booktrack, shared his perspective on launching a business venture, and the trials and tribulations along the way.

Next week will see the candidates deep-diving into a subject that's becoming more relevant for businesses in every industry: data. Stay in the loop by connecting with us on social media, and be sure to come back here every week to see what's happening with our Master's candidates.

If you want to know more about the Master's programme click here, or get in touch with the team.


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Tech Futures Lab is an education facility of The Mind Lab, a NZQA registered Tertiary Education Organisation under the provisions of the Education Act 1989. Candidates who are studying on a programme delivered by Tech Futures Lab are enrolled with The Mind Lab.

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