In this, the final edition of BAB series 2, our host Mark Felstead channels his inner starship Enterprise as he is clearly inspired and extra enthused by two exceptional members of the Berlin ‘events intelligentsia’, the co-founders of the Futurehain agency.
As Mark, in a typical flight of fancy puts it:
Berlin, the final frontier
This is the podcast of the digital agency Futurehain
Their 10-year mission:
To explore digital event formats
To seek out new ideas and innovations
To boldly go where no agency has gone before!!
(With apologies to Captain James T Kirk)
Mark pilots the BAB mothership into the heart of the Berlin start up scene with two of the smartest guys in the city sharing their work, ethos and future plans.
Science and events are at the core of the talk with Matyas Kovacs and Felix Rundel, who relate how their creative agency feeds off the energy of Berlin. Their company Futurehain has sets itself a mission of weaving networks and stories for the global science community and making innovations and scientific discovery more widely known in the wider community, partly through digital events.
From their base in Friedrichshain, Berlin, they collaborate with innovators and catalysts and have produced much pioneering work with emerging technologies, all with the goal, they say, of contributing to a sustainable future.
Mark talks about the intellectual bar of his show being raised considerably by the Futurehain input and nearly resists his own urges to make a ‘quantum leap’ into the scientific discussion, which ranges from the falling of the Berlin Wall to the Mars Explorer and back again in time for tea.
Futurehain is a new-model agency dedicated to creating and structuring events, whether digital or physical, that bring together top scientific minds and themes to the creative maelstrom that is Berlin.
Matyas and Felix also talk about the exhilaration of Berlin’s ‘Wild West start-up scene and describe a fast-evolving environment for new style events. They use an analogy of ‘Explorers, Pioneers, Settlers’ that are taking advantage and making their mark on Berlin as a hub of innovation.
Creating meaningful experiences digitally is one of the challenges discussed and the search for a master narrative. They warn that excitement can wane when it comes to digital events, but say Futurehain is working to define a new path to convene purposefully and sustainably.
The guys point out the events sector is in this new situation together, coping with psychological fall out but getting smarter in the process. It is an environment that is stretching and challenging, they say, and subscribe to the philosophy that says, ‘If you’re the smartest person in the room, then change the room!’ ‘Keep learning and convening together’ is another of their messages.
Felix believes, that, despite the pressures of the pandemic, the events community has done incredibly well. “All of us have adapted to the new situation within a few months. The result is not the final polished product, but the industry has established the baseline for running incredibly cool events. There is now a massive range of platforms. We can create new shapes for events in digital and hybrid,” he says, and the guys walk the walk with their own cool and unusual office design space which their say provides an environment for creative freedom. “After all,” they say, “you don’t remember conferences when they are all cut from the same cloth.”
Mark advises us to check out the team’s previous work with the international science community at Falling Walls also.
Now Futurehain is working with Elon Musk’s XPRIZE foundation and looking to provide new ways of convening to help scientists communicate the benefits of their discoveries to a broader audience, using events as an ideal vessel to spread their word and knowledge.
With Tesla also active in Berlin, the Futurehain team points out that Elon Musk has said there will be a rave cave in the factory when the project is complete – maybe the only place cooler than the Futurehain office!