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04/16/2018

By: Abbey Tate

Now in its sixth year, the Global Education & Skills Forum (GESF) brings together thought-leaders and visionaries seeking solutions to achieving education, equity and employment for everyone. Over the course of two days in Dubai, more than 2,000 representatives discuss new and innovative ways for education to transform our world.

As the Experience Director of the Technicolor Experience Center (TEC) I spend many hours a week educating guests who come into the facility about immersive media. I was invited to speak at GESF, which I saw as an opportunity to project the mission and value of the TEC to hundreds of new people including world-renowned activists, publishers, and government representatives.

As a panelist discussing ‘Teaching Digital Skills Through Storytelling’, I sat alongside KizCode’s Director and Founder, Mujde Esin, as we reflected on our most powerful memories experiencing immersive media. A perfect example of this is an experience I was able to see at GESF called Becoming Homeless: A Human Experience. The experience takes the user through a journey of having a home and career, then through the stages of losing everything. This experience gave me a startlingly poignant sense of perspective as I stood among a bustling conference in Dubai.

It’s a core part of the TEC’s mission that education and immersive go hand-in-hand, and that the two should be combined thoughtfully. By understanding tools and allowing students to develop their ideas and explore their creativity, this enables the next generation of thinkers. It is a priority of Technicolor, a company which employs thousands of digital artists internationally, to show children the endless professional possibilities that form when technology intersects creativity.

While at GESF, we showcased one of our newest collaborative works, Awavena, as a proof-point to our earlier discussion about the use of immersive media as a tool for education. Awavena is a mixed-reality experience created by Emmy award-winning artist/director Lynette Wallworth and Technicolor. The story highlights the life of the first woman shaman of the Yawanawa tribe; the indigenous people of the Amazon. This piece is the second in a series of mixed-reality works by Wallworth and producer Nicole Newnham and explores how the Yawanawa viewed immersive technologies as a tool to document their vibrant lives in the Amazon.

Immersive media is a powerful storytelling tool which gives people the chance to view the world through a different set of eyes. And when put into the hands of our children, it offers endless possibilities.