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Collaboration: Just a way to make more money?

Day 9 of our Festival


Bobby Kolade spoke to us from his fashion design studio in Kampala, Uganda with Rasheeda Nalomosa joining us from Nairobi, Kenya to talk about the circular economy in Uganda and  wider in East Africa, and  ways that creative enterprises are tackling climate and  sustainability challenges. They gave insights in to the need to unlearn, that running successful creative companies for them is finding new ways to develop creative offers and  then different ways of doing business. Much of the learning from universities and  text books did not offer new disruptive approaches that were world withing (Haraway, 1988) so they were creating radically different ways of working.


Rasheeda spoke of the optimism that she had about the new networks across the continent, and  the opportunities to think bigger and  acknowledge the potential through and  with others. Bobby told us that his optimism was fuelled by his team, but that when he reflected on collaboration he first thought of the collaborations between large scale brands, and  how these were less about mutual exchange and  more about ways to increase sales and  encourage people to buy more.


The session reminded me that the optimism I have for the creative industries and  for ways of “doing” business better, more ethically with less harm to people and  the planet come from the radical but gentle, innovations in East Africa.

In the afternoon Ashley Evenson gave a workshop that encouraged participants to find new ways of developing relationships with clients, customers and  other collaborators by finding ways to tell stories with alternative main characters. Ashley reflected that compassion is about taking yourself out of the main character role, and  about meeting people where they are.

Tomorrow we start with George Gachara, creative industry strategist, a fund advisor, and an investor in creative industries in Africa. He is also a senior entrepreneurship fellow and a founder. We will reflect together on notions of Good Business. He will be followed by our final festival guest, Dr Raven Bowen  from National Ugly Mugs, and  we will explore notions of sustainability and  support for a charity that supports marginalised people.


Siân Prime

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