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Win one of ten pairs of tickets to 'Will Innovation Save Us?'

Each year, SFU Public Square hosts a week-long Community Summit to investigate and co-create practical solutions to pressing issues in B.C. and Canada.

Last year's summit featured an evening of dialogue with leading economist and thinker on income inequality, Robert Reich. This year's featured public discussion -- happening at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre on Wednesday, Oct. 22 -- features a trio you won't want to miss.

(If you enter our contest before midnight on Monday, Sept. 29th, you might be one of ten lucky Tyee readers heading there with a guest for free.)

  • Richard Florida: professor, urbanist, and international best-selling author of Rise of The Creative Class and other titles.
  • Ray Kurzweil: author, inventor, futurist, and director of Engineering for Google.
  • Amanda Lang: CBC's well-known former co-host of the Lang & Leary exchange will moderate a discussion between the two speakers on the question 'Will innovation save us?'

Enter to win tickets in the form below, then read on to learn more about the week of events awaiting you at SFU Public Square's 2014 Community Summit.

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Innovation: The Shock of the Possible

The SFU Public Square 2014 Community Summit is titled Innovation: The Shock of the Possible. Four central themes -- Economy, Environment, Education and Health -- will be explored through the lens of innovation. The goal of the summit is to raise awareness, generate discussion and explore the opportunities and challenges presented by innovation.

Young Innovators Crawl: Showcasing YVR's innovators 30 & under

Date & time: Sunday Oct. 19, 12-6 p.m. (plus 19+ after-party 7–11 p.m.)
Locations: Various locations, to be announced

Vancouver is home to many talented young people who are passionately innovative. On Oct. 19, join SFU Public Square on a lively and interactive journey, as we travel together through the creative hubs of the city exploring studios, workshops, installations, dialogues and exhibits.

Hosted in partnership with the City of Vancouver, the Vancouver Economic Commission, Vancouver Public Library, and RADIUS, the Crawl will culminate in a celebratory after party.

Cost: Free, but spaces limited
Website & registration:

RISE: An ideas competition addressing sea level rise in Metro Vancouver

Recent reports predict the ocean that surrounds our Metro Vancouver communities will rise by one metre by 2100, putting housing, transportation and ecosystems at major risk while causing significant economic losses. The RISE open ideas competition -- launched September -- provides a platform for people in Metro Vancouver communities to develop innovative ideas to ensure we adapt and thrive -- faster than the waters that surround us.

The Grand Prize is $35,000, with four category prizes of $10,000 each, including a crowd-favourite cash prize, deciding by online voting. Teams can register now for free, and submit their ideas by Oct. 6. Up to 100 teams will get to pitch their ideas live to the public and an esteemed jury on Oct. 19. Winners will be announced Oct. 22 at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre event.

Cost: Free
Website & registration:

Will Innovation Save Us?

Date & time: Wednesday, Oct. 22, 7–9 p.m.
Location: Queen Elizabeth Theatre

SFU Public Square, in partnership with Vancity and Vancouver Foundation, is proud to present this evening of thought-provoking and provocative discussion featuring Ray Kurzweil (author, inventor, futurist and Google's Director of Engineering), Richard Florida (professor, urbanist, best-selling author of Rise of the Creative Class), moderated by CBC's Amanda Lang.

The world is changing, and the rate of change is accelerating faster than ever before. How will communities and people survive and prosper in uncertain times ahead? An authentic curiosity and open discussion about innovation encourages us to keep our eyes wide open and imagine the future. What kind of life do we want for our children? How will we address the world's great social, economic and environmental challenges? What kind of creative people do we need to meet these challenges? How can new technologies such as artificial intelligence enrich and expand human capabilities? Will we merge human biology with technology? Should we?

Talking about innovation raises important questions to which we must find answers. Before it's too late. Prompting the ultimate question: Will innovation save us?

The evening will include presentations by each of the speakers, followed by a moderated thought-provoking and authentic debate on the issues at play, and audience participation.

Cost: $19
Website & ticket sales:

Business Innovation in the Local Economy

Date & time: Thursday, Oct. 23, 8 a.m. – noon
Location: Downtown Vancouver, TBC

Vancity, in partnership with SFU Public Square, presents a morning event dedicated to building Business Innovation in the Local Economy where Vancity asks -- and businesses prove -- that values-based business is viable.

Join us for thought-provoking insights from Michael Shuman (author and cofounder & research director, BALLE) on the Power of the Local Economy; get practical tips through peer-to-peer presentations on Growing your Business by taking a values-based approach; and roll-up your sleeves at interactive how-to sessions that promise no trade-offs when you Build your Bottom Line while Building your Community and the Local Economy.

Cost: Free
Website & registration:

Breaking the Mould: Innovations in Undergraduate Learning

Date & time: Wednesday, Oct. 22, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Location: SFU Burnaby

This dynamic, one-day conference, presented in partnership with the SFU Faculty of Education, will bring together leading academics, policy-makers, and innovative educators. This conference will explore the theme of innovation in student-oriented learning. Innovations in pedagogy, technology, and programming will all be explored.

Collaborative peer learning, workshops facilitated by leading scholars, inspirational case studies, and a festival of new ideas in undergraduate learning, Breaking the Mould will open the window to a world of new and exciting ideas in undergraduate learning.Breaking the Mould features an impressive line up of today's education innovators and includes a keynote presentation delivered by Dr. Robert Page, provost of Arizona State University.

Cost: Free
Website & registration:

Zero Waste: Innovation to Drive the Circular Economy

Date: Monday, Oct. 20, 2014
Location: Room 1200, SFU's Segal Building, 500 Granville Street, Vancouver

Waste management presents increasingly significant challenges to Metro Vancouver and much of the world. SFU has responded to the challenges by developing some successful models for waste management. Now we have begun to explore systems for going beyond diversion that tackle sources of waste before they need to be managed. In doing so we're ready to drive closed loop systems that support the Circular Economy.

Join us at this SFU Public Square Event where experts will lead a dialogue on how to foster a climate for zero waste innovation in Metro Vancouver.

Cost: Free
Website & registration:

Open Textbooks: New Models in Textbook Production

Date & time: Thursday, Oct. 23, 1-2 p.m.
Location: Room 1600, SFU's Vancouver Harbour Centre Campus

Open textbooks are innovating and disrupting the traditional model of textbook publication. In celebrating Open Access Week, SFU Library is delighted to bring together a range of perspectives on open textbooks.

Students spend roughly $1,000 per year on textbooks, and are increasingly advocating for freely available textbooks. In this province, BCcampus has been overseeing the Open Textbook Project, which involves creating 40 open textbooks in a variety of disciplines, and many faculty members have started to adopt or adapt open textbooks for their courses.

Join us for an interactive session featuring three speakers actively engaged in the production, adoption, and use of open textbooks. Bring your questions and comments to this open discussion.

Panelists are Mary Burgess, director of Open Education at BCcampus; Dr. Rajiv Jhangiani, psychology professor at Kwantlen Polytechnic University; and Chardaye Bueckert, president of the Simon Fraser Student Society.

Gwen Bird, dean of SFU Libraries, will provide opening words and Lisa O'Neill from the TLC will moderate this event.

Cost: Free
Website & registration:

In this Tyee Presents series