Zenith Partners With SBS & UTS For ‘Innovation Sprint’

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Zenith Sydney has partnered with the University of Technology, Sydney’s Bachelor of Creative Intelligence and Innovation (BCII) to host an ‘innovation sprint’ that featured a real-world business challenge from SBS for students to solve.

Held over two days this week, the Creative Practice and Methods workshop attracted around 200 students studying a range of degrees including communications, business, engineering, IT, design, science, health and law.

The BCII is designed to drive innovation across multiple sectors, and this year Zenith was asked to set the subject’s agenda, incorporating its own proprietary marketing and innovation models to innovate around a specific and real client challenge.

The sprint, undertaken during the BCII summer school, makes up part of a four-year combined degree, tackling everything from creative and critical thinking to problem-solving, future-thinking, invention, complexity and entrepreneurship.

In this particular transdisciplinary school, students explored creative methods from across all the disciplines as well as industry.

The sprint kicked off with a substantial brief from SBS head of group marketing Uma Oldham regarding a real-world business challenge.

Zenith chief innovation officer Kate Evans taught problem-framing techniques, disruption methodology, ideation techniques and a disruptive storytelling canvas, and was joined by Zenith Sydney strategy director Mark Krebs in teaching how to build and use consumer insights.

As well as all these methods, students worked with Zenith’s proprietary tool for touch points and how to use media with the agency’s business director, Alice Duong.

Students were divided into 31 groups to pitch their ideas to a range of tutors. Five finalists then presented to Oldham and SBS head of digital transformation Sarah Yassein, UTS course director Bem Le Hunte and Zenith Australia CEO Nickie Scriven.

The winners received an internship at Zenith and SBS to help realise their solution to the broadcaster’s business challenge. The winners were Lauren Ashley, Lex Barlin, Victoria Fernandez Jones, Ciara Mulkeen, Omer Patel, and Alice Zhang.

Le Hunte said: “It’s a genuine privilege for students to work on such a challenging brief from SBS and Zenith, and learn about creative methods and innovation processes that are being used in Australia’s leading organisations.

“There’s electricity in the classroom, the stakes are high and everyone’s inspired to achieve amazing results.

“We’ve curated a very porous learning environment within the BCII so that brilliant industry partners like SBS and Zenith can help us make the impact universities must have to prepare our students for the challenges and opportunities of the future.”

Oldham said: “It was incredible to observe the journey the students took in two days. This sprint-based, time-boxed approach to solving a business problem delivered lateral and innovative solutions to drive consumption of SBS digital platforms.

“I was impressed by the fresh insights, ideas and storytelling skills of the first-year students, and am looking forward to working with them.”

Evans said: “This innovation sprint attracted some of the most intelligent young minds in Australia, and the diversity and skill shown with some of their ideas was outstanding.

“At Zenith, we have a culture of innovation to help our clients’ brands grow and succeed, and it was a great pleasure to share our knowledge with students. We look forward to welcoming our new interns in 2018.”

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