Your Favourite Ten Keynotes From Pause 2019

In its ninth year, Pause Fest launched their talent-stacked roster for the festival held on 6-8 Feb 2019 at Federation Square in Melbourne. The festival’s theme was ‘Intimate Future’ and it focused on the topics that analyse human interaction with technology, how it’s challenging our social fabric and what are the consequences of this future.

‘We live in a world where anything is possible. The Digital Revolution has sparked the new gold rush, where entrepreneurs have the ability to rewrite how we live. All you need is an internet connection and a phone to access tools that are more powerful than those that put a man on the Moon’, says George Hedon, Founder of Pause Fest.

Pause Fest is an independent, industry-driven movement with a mission to bring diverse intelligence together to fuel the next generation forward. Pause Fest has been described as 'Australia's SXSW', 'Octoberfest for business' and 'Woodstock for digital natives’.

Here are your top ten and most engaging sessions from the 2019 event.


Designing for humanity

Billy Seabrook, Global Chief Creative Officer, IBM iX

AI will change a few things, especially jobs. ”Some jobs will be gone, some new ones will be created.” Billy Seabrook of IBM iX reminds us that AI will alter what our jobs look like but the human component remains key.

Billy Seabrook is the Global Chief Creative Officer at IBM iX.  He leads a network of over 40 IBM iX design studios to create human-centred experiences that drive business outcomes. Prior to joining the team in 2017, he held executive leadership roles at Digitas, eBay, and Citi where he managed the growth and change of the organisations and the day-to-day activities of global creative teams.


Why creativity is important to any business

Grant Petty, Founder, Blackmagic Design

Grant Petty will discuss how Blackmagic Design used creativity to become a global brand with world-leading technology and design. Grant will discuss how a creative company is different from a regular company, plus how these differences are vital for companies wanting to survive the coming decades.
Grant Petty is the CEO of Blackmagic Design, a leading designer and manufacturer of products for the film and television industries. Since its inception, Blackmagic Design has won 340 industry awards for innovative products, technologies and industrial design, including the Red Dot Design Team of the Year award. Since that time, Blackmagic Design has grown to over 1,000 employees worldwide, all without using external investors, without venture capital and without borrowing money.


Chasing the uncomfortable

Cecilia Ambros, Head of Creative for Amazon Advertising US, Amazon

Intimacy can be created with artificial intelligence. The companionship of technology will soon provide a meaningful and personal relationship. Emotions will be mutually expressed with a digital assistant without hesitation. In this talk, we’ll explore how we can enable self-actualization with machine learning by reflecting on how psychology and entertainment industries have embraced the biases and ethical concerns.

Ambros is the Head of Creative Studios, US for Amazon Advertising. She led Global Design as a Studio. Director at Nike, Inc. for various performance sport categories (NFL, Men’s Training and Global Football). In her prior work as an independent consultant, her clients included Autodesk, McDonald’s Corp, Whirlpool and TÜV Rheinland. She holds a Masters of Design and an MBA and has taught workshops and lectures at at Stanford University, Farmingdale College, Harvard University, Northwestern and IIT Institute of Design.


How to prepare humans for space travel

Dr. Marissa Rosenberg, Senior Scientist, Neuroscience, NASA

Take one small step…into another world. Dr. Marissa Rosenberg, of NASA’s Neurosciences Laboratory, will explore what happens to the human body when we leave Earth. Learn how zero gravity affects an astronaut’s ability to walk, talk and think, and what NASA is doing to prepare our bodies for space travel.

Dr. Marissa Rosenberg is a neurophysiologist at NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. She has a Ph.D. in Astrophysics from Leiden University in the Netherlands and a M.Sc. in Space Physiology & Health from King’s College London. She studies astronauts’ balance and coordination immediately after they return from the International Space Station, and tracks their recovery. She also uses virtual reality to simulate the negative effects of spaceflight, with the intention of developing an astronaut training tool to increase safety on future missions to the Moon and Mars.

Intention to innovation: the road to real impact

Mark Brand, Board Chair and CEO of MB Inc, A Better Life Foundation

Mark will lead us through his journey and how discovering his guiding principles led him from helping one man to attacking poverty head-on through design, food, and an understanding of values systems.
Mark Brand is one of North America's foremost social entrepreneurs. With 11 businesses under his belt, he is an example of a new form of leadership that pursues purpose with every step. Seven years ago, Brand took over Save On Meats, a Vancouver diner that has provided food security and access for at-risk members of the community since 1957. Since then, more than 2.2 million meals have left Save On’s doors to feed those who struggle. Along with overseeing the five impact companies under MB Inc, Brand is a Stanford fellow, Professor of Innovation at USC, Executive Chef for The American Refugee Committee and Pope Francis's Laudato Si Challenge.


Creating the future we want takes togetherness

Kate O'Keeffe, Founder, Cisco Hyperinnovation Living Labs (CHILL)

Kate O’Keeffe discusses the co-innovation methodology she has developed at Cisco CHILL – the result of a career focused on bringing people together to accomplish great things. Attendees will gain an understanding of innovation best practices, including choosing the right partners for multiparty innovation, the role of rapid prototyping, why end-users are the most important people in the room and more. 

Entrepreneurship and innovation are part of Kate O’Keeffe’s DNA. From technology to energy to fashion – she is driving industry-wide disruption at a blistering pace. As founder of Cisco CHILL, Kate is a pioneer of multiparty innovation that drives ground breaking services, products, and businesses. Her passion to solve bold global problems grew out of her long held desire to find better, faster ways to approach environmental and population challenges. It became clear to her that solving big problems demands a bold, collaborative, multiparty approach to co-innovation. Among other accolades, Kate was named one of Fast Company’s “Most Creative People in Business” in 2016.


A cultural consensus: youth survey

Stephanie Winkler, Digital Strategist, Vice 

In 2018, VICE partnered with analytics and software engineer agency Max Kelsen to use IBM Watson to analyse 15 years of VICE data. In this session, representatives from VICE, Max Kelsen and IBM will present the findings and how they used machine learning to analyse over 500,000 data points.

Stephanie uses data to draw meaningful insights and tell compelling stories for creatives and brands. 


Don't Underestimate the Power of Crazy

Stephen Gates, Head of Design Transformation, InVision

Today, creative people have the opportunity to affect businesses in ways we haven't seen since the Industrial Revolution, but too few of us know how to take advantage of these opportunities. In this keynote, InVision’s Head of Design Transformation, Stephen Gates, will share unique insights on creativity and innovation that he has learned through leading creative teams for some of the world’s biggest brands and working with senior teams at Apple, Google, Facebook and beyond.

Stephen Gates is the Head of Design Transformation at InVision, where he works with their partners to weave together the best methodologies, practices, and tools into comprehensive strategies that elevate the business impact of design within every company. He previously worked at McCann Erickson, Citi and Starwood Hotels building teams that created award-winning global advertising campaigns, multiple Fortune 100 brands, and innovative digital experiences. His work has received over 150 international awards, his app design has been named as one of the World's 100 Greatest Apps, and Apple has featured his work in 10 keynotes and more.


The rise of First Nations entrepreneurship in Victoria

Moderator: John Chambers, CEO, TAPPL

Australia's First Nations people might be our original entrepreneurs, but they haven’t always been included in conversations about entrepreneurship. That’s starting to change ­­– a recent survey by LaunchVic showed that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people made up 2% of founders in Victoria, despite representing 1% of the population. This panel represents a chance to listen and learn from our First Nations entrepreneurial leaders.


Marsha Uppill, Founder, ARRANYINHA
Jirra Harvey, Managing Director, Kalinya Communications
Richard Young, Director, Culturepreneur


Design is bedded in the boardroom

Moderated by:  Mark Bergin, Founder and CEO, DRIVENxDESIGN

A panel of design executives, GMs, SVP, CEOs from top 100 organisations discuss how they're leveraging creativity, design and tech to drive their businesses. Learn how to connect with design executives, and find out how others are building high-performance boardroom culture.


Laura Anderson, International Company Director, Entrepreneur and Global Philanthropist
Kirsten Mann, VP Product Experience, Construction & Engineering Global Business Unit, Oracle
Harriet Wakelam, Director Design Centre, IAG
Andrew Hoyne, Founding Principle of Hoyne, publisher of The Place Economy