April 21st saw World Creativity & Innovation Day celebrate their 20th year of empowering others to showcase original ideas and creative thinking with a #20Years20Hours worldwide summit.
Creativity is Key
Creativity is all around us and being used to enact change; from forward-thinking which challenges conventional perceptions, to finding alternative approaches to reach a common goal. An innovative way of problem-solving can turn an ordinary idea into something never seen before. That is why having a creative mindset, whether instinctual or cultivated, should be encouraged and celebrated.
World Creativity & Innovation Day (WCID) values the importance of creativity and the confidence it gives to others.
Their mission is to ‘encourage people to use new ideas, make new decisions, and taking new steps towards making the world, and your place in it, better through creativity.’
- 2001: WCID was founded on May 25th in Toronto, Canada, by Marci Segal, who began studying creativity in 1977. The significance of April 21 is as a ‘placeholder in time’ to consider all creative ways of thinking before Earth Day on April 22.
- 2002: The first WCID celebrations occurred in five countries spanning the globe, with a wider community from many more beginning to form online through Yahoo.
- 2006: WCID extends to a week-long event, noting the beginning date as April 15, the day of Leonardo da Vinci’s birth. He holds great importance as a creative thinker through both art and science.
- 2017: WCID becomes a UN International Day of Observance. April 21 is officially recognised to encourage problem-solving in all issues related to achieving the 17 Sustainable Development Goals for 2030.
- 2021: WCID celebrates 20 years of impacting change through creative thinking, with online events from 81 countries worldwide. Watch a few of the presenters of WCID 2021 discuss how creativity and innovation improves their work lives on a daily basis:
Getting Involved with WCID
Every year, WCID promotes the need of a creative mindset to further the 17 Sustainable Development Goals and encourages use of various mediums to highlight these, where anyone can get involved. WCID recommends looking at the goals and choosing one or more which inspire a creative approach to change and building from there. Just a few suggestions of participation include videos, articles, webinars, games and discussions, which individuals and organisations from a multitude of countries have used as a basis to present and brainstorm their innovative ideas.
The WCID have shared values to uphold when organising projects and events:
- Collaboration Inviting others into the innovation process.
- Empathy Making meaningful connections with one another.
- Empowerment Welcoming and appreciating differences and cultivating creative confidence.
- Mentorship Finding the next generation of leaders and valuing learning through failure.
This year marked 20 years since the founding of WCID, and although celebrations were mostly in digital format for the second year, the wave of support could be seen globally. WCID HQ created their #20Years20Hours summit at Miami University, which included a livestream with guest speakers and activities.
Some highlights from the World Creativity and Innovation Week include:
1) The Playful Creative Summit, created by David Chislett and Alyea Sandovar in the Netherlands. The event featured over 50 international experts discussing their backgrounds and creative processes and sharing tips for improving creativity in both life and work.
2) In Switzerland, the Ingenuity Cup was created for competitors to develop a “groundbreaking innovation in 40 days” with the help of an Innovation Coach. (Keep your eyes peeled, the winners will be announced on June 22!)
Clearly, what WCID is doing, resonates with many of our previous changemakers and their stories. In fact, in our article on Nadim Choucair's Global Goals Jam, we delve deeper into the topic and introduce the creative working method of design thinking, which promotes entrepreneurial innovation processes.
Header Picture: "My Life Through A Lens"/ Unsplash