Innovate Now - eLearning

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hedgehog lab

Generator Studios

Trafalgar Street

Newcastle Upon Tyne


United Kingdom

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Apply for tickets at innovatenow.tech.

Event Description:

The sixth edition of hedgehog lab's flagship event, Innovate Now, is set to see us refresh things a little. This time, we'll be focusing on eLearning and the technologies revolutionising training experiences.

As well as analysing how training is becoming more effective with the integration of tech, we'll look at how businesses are saving money, increasing staff satisfaction and boosting productivity by capitalising on the revolution.

To cover all bases, we're aiming to host a number of 'lightning talks'*, providing a quickfire insight into the theory, application and benefits of eLearning.

*Subject to change.

Speaker Profile - Vin Sumner (Clicks and Links):

Vin Sumner founded and runs Clicks and Links Ltd based in Manchester, who specialise in immersive technology. The company have a long history working with virtual worlds ever since being founded in 2000, when they were one of the first to host virtual concerts in Second Life - a long way from what is considered to be immersion today.

More recently, the company has been focussing on bringing the exciting potential of virtual reality to new industries, and has carried out work with large infrastructure projects including rail, construction and nuclear decommissioning, as well as immersive training experiences with the likes of EDF Energy, TfL, Murphy Group and the Coop.

What Clicks and Links find is always the same - the more immersive the applications are, the more value they add to their client's organisation. This is particularly true of our VR bike which allows you to try cycling around Manchester and other cities.

In summary, Vin will demonstrate why the quote “Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn” rings true.

Vin's previous roles include: Head of E-Government for First Software, UK Business Development Director, Central Government Business Director for the Sema Group and Consultant with Logica, and he also degree in Physics from St Catherine’s College, Oxford.

Speaker Profile - Dr. James Gupta (Synap):

Dr. James Gupta is the Founder & CEO of Synap, an intelligent online training platform that helps companies deliver personalised, effective and engaging training at scale. James studied Medicine at the University of Leeds, and holds an MSc in Health Informatics.

Along with his co-founder, he created Synap as a way to train more effectively during his own time at university. Since graduating last year, Synap has gone on to win a number of high profile awards including Leeds Startup of the Year, Northern Stars, and being named in the 10 British AI Companies to Watch by Business Insider.

With 90% of what companies invest in training essentially wasted because it's delivered in a way that is not conducive to the way our brains want to learn, James' talk , titled "How 'microtraining' can help your team learn more in less time", will explore the concept of microtraining: training in short, easily digestible chunks, and how that can be used to radically improve the way training is delivered.

Speaker Profile - Dominic Lusardi (Animmersion):

Dominic is Owner and Managing Director at Animmersion, and has been working in the field of Computing and Digital Media for over 20 years. He has worked on projects across games, web, manufacturing, engineering and advertising.

A keen believer that 3D has use beyond films and games, Dominic is helping businesses to reap the benefits, using virtual reality, holograms, animation and interactive displays to explain processes and visions, amongst other uses.

For over a decade Animmersion has created animated content for multiple platforms, and pride themselves on their ability to distil complex products and processes and communicate them more effectively. They have done this for clients in sectors such as heavy industry, chemicals, aerospace and healthcare.

Their in-house modelling and animation teams have produced animated content responsible for educating and training nurses, first responders, firefighters and technicians across diverse sectors such as semiconductor production, marine training, oil and gas production and construction.

Speaker Profile - Daniel Sydes (UTC Futures):

Daniel joins us from North East Futures UTC, where he was recently appointed as Principal Designate. The UTC is a state-funded technical school, aimed at 14-19 year olds seeking a future in IT and Health Sciences.

Prior to his move to Newcastle, Daniel was the VP of UTC Reading, where he gained experience in managing education facilities.

After presentations, Daniel will join our fellow speakers on the panel in the latter half of the evening, providing an insight into the current education system and how it is embracing innovation and emerging technology.

Event Schedule:

Timings subject to change.

6:00pm - 6:30pm: Registration & Refreshments:

Guests collect their welcome pack on arrival and are free to help themselves to a drink, chat with fellow delegates and enjoy the build up to the panel discussion.

6:30pm - 7:30pm: Lightening Talks*.

Our expert talkers will present individual lightning talks, each providing a unique insight into the theory behind eLearning, technologies that are enabling application of improved training and first-hand experience of the benefit of such initiatives.

7:30pm - 8:00pm: Food & Networking:

As keen supporters of local food vendors, we'll be supplying more unbelievable food for you to have a chat over.

8:00pm - 8:40pm: Panel Discussion and Q&A:

We'll bring together our speakers to host a quick panel discussion and Q&A, helping you to gain an insight into best practices of integrating eLearning solutions.

8:40pm - 9:00pm: Close & Networking.

Enjoy the opportunity to pose one-on-one questions to those on our panel, interact with fellow delegates and ensure you have a clear idea of how you can implement or follow up on your learnings.

Get Involved:

Website: innovatenow.tech

Twitter: @InnovateNowTech

Facebook: Innovate Now

Instagram: @InnovateNowTech


How can I contact the organiser with any questions?

If you have any questions for us, please do feel free to get in touch via any of our social media channels (listed above). Alternatively, we'd be happy to hear from you on events@hedgehoglab.com. Whatever your query, we'd love to help you out!

What is the nearest station to the event venue?

The nearest train station to hedgehog lab is Newcastle Central Railway Station, located just an 8-minute walk from the station. Manors Metro station is the closest inner-city rail service, but if arriving via train it is advised to walk or get a taxi for convenience.

Is there any parking available?

There will be free limited parking spaces outside Generator Studios on the night of the event. Car park users should request a parking pass from a volunteer upon arrival. Alternatively, there is a multi-storey parking facility just around the corner.

Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event?

You do not have to bring your printed ticket to the event, however, there will be a registration process upon arrival (see the event schedule above for more), and as such you will be required to have notified us of your intent to attend to guarantee your seat.

Will there be food and/or drink?

Of course. As hosts of the event, hedgehog lab will provide a range of soft drinks, beers, coffee and locally-crafted food to make sure you don't go home hungry or thirsty!

Does the event actually start at 6pm?

In a word, no. As per the event schedule, there will be a 30-minute registration and networking period prior to us getting underway, so don't worry if you're unsure if you can make it for6pm sharp. We do ask that you are here by6:30pm so we can get underway promptly.

I've been given a ticket but can no longer make it. What should I do?

We understand that plans change, but as this is an exclusive event we do ask those who can no longer join us send us a courtesy message or email on marketing@hedgehoglab.com. Doing so will prevent your name from reaching a ban list, filled with those who have 'no-showed' us, so it's well worthwhile if you fancy joining us at a later date!

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hedgehog lab

Generator Studios

Trafalgar Street

Newcastle Upon Tyne


United Kingdom

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