Where creativity collides

Having more questions than answers feels just right for a group focused on creativity, says Professor Jennifer Windsor.

She chairs the steering group for Cultivating Creative Capital, one of Victoria’s eight distinctive themes, and says “uncertainty, flexibility and imagination” has been an ideal place for the group to begin its work.

“We think creative solutions rely on asking great questions, to explore and foster collaboration and inspiration—and that’s where we have started.”

Jennifer, who is the Pro Vice-Chancellor of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences and Faculty of Education, says the thirteen Victoria staff on the steering group reflect many different aspects of creative capital.

“We have people with expertise in architecture and design, art history, creative writing, education, languages and cultures, museum and heritage studies, music, science history and theatre. For some at the University, cultivating creative capital is launching new creative works, for others it is collaboration and experimentation in research and teaching and for others fostering entrepreneurship.

“The consistent theme is imagination, innovation and risk-taking.”

Victoria has a very rich tradition and history of staff and student creativity, Jennifer says.

“We want to make our capability and contributions more visible and meaningful, nationally and internationally.”

Partnership and tangible projects will be central to the group’s work. “We’ll be talking broadly across Victoria University as well as with Wellington community leaders to understand their needs and how they imagine cultivating creative capital—and then we will get to work on new initiatives.

“Victoria has a unique contribution to make in a city rich with creative practice. We are a community of pre-eminent researchers, educators and practitioners who can help create new ideas and experiences for students and staff, and partner in new ways with Wellington communities and businesses.

“I think we can make Victoria top of mind for creative thinking—we can make it the place of choice to explore and practise creativity in all its forms.”