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Partnership to explore how creative agencies can leverage automation

A recent ceremony has seen an advertising agency from Shanghai signing on to become the first industry partner in China for innovation style projects.

As reported, the University of Sydney will be partnering with J. Walter Thompson China to focus on technology and digital transformation to develop creative solutions for current and future business issues.

The partnership will kick off in December 2018 with an Industry and Community Project Unit (ICPU).

The University introduced ICPUs earlier this year, to provide units of study based around authentic problems and issues set out by industry, community and government organisations.

Coming from interdisciplinary areas, the students will be forming small teams to develop creative, ethical and context sensitive solutions.

16 University students will be answering questions such as “What will the future of work look like for creative agencies?” and “How can technology be applied to the creative process?”

The ICPUs are offered as four-week intensive courses. The students will be based in Sydney for the first week.

While in Sydney, they will work through the project brief as well as conduct background research on the project and country.

During the second and third weeks, students will be working in Shanghai with the advertising agency.

They will be given the opportunity to navigate the political, economic, socio-cultural, technological and legal context of unfamiliar international markets.

The fourth and final week will be spent virtually, wherein they will be writing up their assessment task and undertaking interactive workshops.

It promises to be an exciting partnership by bringing together innovation, creativity and education.

The first project will seek to find out if technology can be applied so that it elevates the creative process in business functions and processes.

Ultimately, the partnership will work towards what actions creative agencies can take now to deliver efficiencies across their business.

It will also guarantee that creativity is able to effectively adapt to the implementation of artificial intelligence (AI) and new technologies.

There is particular interest in exploring the connection between human and machine learning and how this will change roles in the future.

Hopefully, this will be the start of many innovative and future facing topics that both the agency and the University can work together on solving for the creative industry.

Magic begins from having interdisciplinary groups. Students from different disciplines are brought together to work on a common problem

With 16 students working in four groups to explore how creative processes can be automated at the agency, each student group will be bringing a fresh perspective and new way of tackling the challenge.

Under the supervision of academic and industry experts, the students will consider if design thinking and machine learning can be used to strike a balance between automation and retaining the human element.

The ICPU initiative has been enthusiastically received by both industry and students, and to date 1000 students have been involved in 35 projects.

Next year, the University will double the number of places offered to the students to 2000, with the number of projects increasing to 50 in Australia and internationally.


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