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Celebrating the first decade 2001 to 2011

celebrating the first decade The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

What is The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui? It’s where people find the tools, networks, opportunities and inspiration to grow their “big ideas” into viable careers, projects and businesses in the creative sector.

Cover image: Conquer by Claire Nicholls The home of New Zealand’s creative community – a contemporary and dynamic online resource

Launched on 3 December 2001 and now celebrating 10 years – The Big Idea website has become a place where the depth and diversity of New Zealand’s arts and creative enterprises are showcased to the world. It is a virtual community where creative people connect, celebrate and network with each other. celebrating the first decade

Visitors to The Big Idea website experience a comprehensive understanding of the creative sector through features that include employment listings, up-to-date industry news and showcasing of members’ profiles. Centred around delivering a constant source of vital, current information, The Big Idea signals changing trends and shifts across all segments of New Zealand’s creative community. Now an institution, The Big Idea is an essential piece of infrastructure that offers broad views of New Zealand’s creative ecology and all that

The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

makes it hum.

In 2011 The Big Idea website had over 1 million visitors and currently has more than 30,000 members



I’m usually popping in to check something, and I usually end up staying to read something else. :o) – Miriam Barr

A guiding star – where the The Big Idea logo came from The mattang – a navigation device There were no maps for our Polynesian and European ancestors who travelled to the ends They studied their environment and built their own way finding tools, such as the mattang and the chronometer. The Polynesian mattang is a fitting metaphor for understanding how creative careers and businesses are built. Unlike other areas in the economy, there are few established pathways in the creative sector. So people need to navigate and build their own pathways using their skills, talent and connections as well as

celebrating the first decade

of the earth. They looked to the stars.

The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

the power of their passion and ideas.

Our mattang is the navigation tool for all in the creative sector

A night on the beach by Grant Buckley




On the high seas – how it all began Back in the 80s and 90s, creative sector

With the launch of the new website, individuals,

confidence was taking a battering. Established

organisations and companies in the creative

creative practitioners and emerging graduates

sector could identify and relate to each other in

alike faced ‘lumpy’ income, transitory contracts,

one, online home for the first time. The website

isolation, financial stress and the urgent need

connected people, allowing important networks

for more income-generating opportunities.

to develop on personal, local, regional and international levels. Creative talent could now

The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

celebrating the first decade

Our very big idea

link with industry, science, commerce, health or agriculture and The Big Idea could promote the

To provide:

a genuine platform for collaboration

• • • •

a connected creative community

building of relationships across sectors.

through the web a way-finding tool for the creative sector a place to see and be seen, find and be found a place where the success of the creative sector, its businesses and organisations are applauded

The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui website went live in 2001, launched by the then Prime Minister, the Rt Hon. Helen Clark.

More than 50,000 unique visitors each month and 50% of those visitors keep coming back Google Analytics

Subsee by Chiaradina Cerweny

The Big Idea Charitable Trust A charitable trust was established in 2003 to govern The Big Idea and achieve its vision

Our Vision/Purpose:

To drive creativity into all sectors of New Zealand society by being an enabler and a broker of ventures that create real


To design and deliver innovative services, celebrating the first decade

tools and programmes that support practitioners and organisations in New Zealand’s creative community to meet their

creative and professional goals. To support emerging and established arts practitioners in New Zealand’s creative sector affected by high levels of underemployment and low income-generation.

The Big Idea Trust Driving creativity into all sectors of NZ’s economy

Our services: The Trust runs two innovative communitybuilding projects that service a broadly based

1) The Big Idea Website – which has fast become the online home of New Zealand’s creative community.

The Big Idea Website

TBI Assist

Facilitating creative solutions

2) TBI Assist – The face to face social enterprise arm, a creative consultancy offering web, business and facilitation services – see page 14.

Our Goal: To be a viable and strong leadership organisation that has the capacity and confidence to generate, promote and champion leading edge thinking, projects and practice that accelerate the growth and development of the arts and the creative sector.




The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

artistic/creative community:

A port, not just for storms - creating networks and resources No person’s journey establishing their creative career, organisation or business is the same. celebrating the first decade

People navigate their own way based on what they know and are aware of. The Big Idea was launched to make a difference and to expand people’s knowledge. It has always been our focus that practitioners and organisations in the creative sector are empowered to find and navigate the resources crucial to their long-term viability. On The Big Idea website , people determine their own path in the creative sector inspired by the

The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

depth and breadth of content found there.

When I was starting out it let me know that I could become part of this creative industry before I was already a part of it, helping break that Catch-22 that used to seem so hard for up and comers to get past. - Craig Parkes

Abundance Basket by Caroline Robinson (photo by Simon Devitt)

celebrating the first decade The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui Our Goal To be a viable and strong leadership organisation that has the capacity and confidence to generate, promote and champion leading edge thinking, projects and practice that accelerate the growth and development of the arts and the creative sector.

2 + 5 3 4

Casting the net wide – building community A message from the Executive Director

supporting learning communities in which people cluster for long or short periods to collaborate, to innovate, to exchange peer support and to make change.

celebrating the first decade

While we need innovative, creative artsThe Big Idea is grounded in collaboration,

led thinking to solve world problems, we

innovation and community, in that people

believe that it is only through strong creative

actively working together can create or add

communities that these ideas can be realised.

value to something that is very much bigger

In these challenging times The Big Idea

than what any one person could achieve

community has a big role to play in that.

working alone. At an individual level, collaboration is important because it’s the space where people

Elisabeth Vaneveld, Executive Director,

share their aspirations, their concerns, their

The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui Charitable Trust

knowledge and their skills; and it’s also the place where people find what they may be looking for. In community, people are not alone; change

The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

happens. That may be for individuals, for groups and for seemingly intractable challenges that only large numbers of people working together can impact upon. The development of community is central to how The Big Idea works, be that online or in ‘real’ time. Our big interest is creating and

Engage with creative ideas & inspiration

Find jobs & opportunities

Show creative work Get relevant news

Learn something new

Showcase a project

Advertise an event

Find solutions

What people do on The Big Idea

Build a profile


Realise a goal

Test a new idea Ask a question

Grow a project

Benchmark against others

Connect with a huge arts collective

Engage with a specialist

Feel part of something REALLY big

The Big Idea is a fantastic place to show work, build a profile and advertise news, exhibitions and events. I have used the website many, many times over the years - it’s always the first place I visit. I know the content is current and relevant. – Deanna Gracie




TBI Assist

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The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

Sh o




Fo r



Co lu bl mn og s s &

celebrating the first decade

TBI Assist is a creative consultancy offering web, business and facilitation services.

TBI Assist has provided services to: ART (Arts Regional Trust): ART Venture Programme. Auckland Council: Draft Auckland Plan Sector Consultation. Auckland Council: Howick Local Board Arts & Culture Plan. Auckland Council: Arts Centre Review. Auckland City Council: Artstation. Auckland City Council: Community Planning. Auckland City Council: Economic Development. Auckland Dance Festival Trust. Auckland Museum. Auckland Theatre Company. Booksellers New Zealand. Community

For TBI Assist enquiries contact: Elisabeth Vaneveld | Senior Consultant p | 09 813 3085 m | 027 490 7113 e |

We accelerate organisation, team and personal

TBI Assist offers

effectiveness by harnessing innovation and facilitating creative solutions. Our work is

Web Services: Strategic content partnerships.

influenced by creativity, the arts, business,

Strategic events (on The Big Idea website).

technology and culture.

Targeted niche promotions. Project management. Requirements research. Website

Business Services: Coaching & mentoring.

Crea com tive mu resea nity rch

& Governance. Financial management. Marketing strategy. Facilitation Services: Organisational

ry st tes du a In voc ad

strategy. Group planning. Conflict processing. Team effectiveness. Workshop delivery. Project evaluation. Community consultation.

ive & Surv e – Thriv l a annu m foru

r rato Gene line - on nal essio prof opment l deve ssist TBI A ing rn - lea nity mu com

ing ribut l Cont siona ofes n to pr pment i lo deve reative the c tor sec

The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

g in ic ild eg Bu rat us st foc

c gi te ht ra g hip St ou rs th de a le

Conn orga ecting n with isations crea t com mun ive ities

Business strategy. Business planning. Leadership

celebrating the first decade

development. Open-source solutions.

Energy Network. Corban Estate Arts Centre. Creative Coalition. Creative Northland. Creative New Zealand. Department of Labour. Dunedin Fringe Festival Trust. Going West Festival Trust. Hikurangi Trust. Huia Publishing. Mairangi Arts Centre. Lake House Arts Centre.Mana Retreat Centre. Matariki Festival Trust. New Zealand Comedy Festival Trust. New Zealand Dance Company. North Shore City Council. Q Theatre. Silo Theatre. The BizDojo. Waitakere City Council. Wellington City Council.




Tangible connections for a creative community

Pipi Basket by Dorothy Ramae MacKinnon

The journey so far World Wide Web consortium founded by Tim Berners-Lee


Email use becomes widespread especially in business settings

1996 Auckland based Arts Work Project develops the idea of building an online hub as a way of being in and connecting with the arts and creative industries


The Big Idea Web is launched and a ‘virtual’ team runs the website


The Big Idea Charitable Trust established


Broadband available to home users and Facebook is launched

2004 The Big Idea Trust’s depth of knowledge and understanding of the creative sector is offered to other enabling organisations through TBI Assist

2006 TBI Assist commissioned to design and implement a development programme investing in creative entrepreneurs on behalf of Arts Regional Trust

2007 The Global Financial Crisis hits. The arts sector is especially hard hit as many grants organisations suspend their funding programmes

2008 The Big Idea Trust works closely with the website team to maintain operations as cuts take hold due to the impact of the global financial crisis

2008 TBI Assist commissioned to create online professional development suite including smART Talk Forums, Generator, Connections, SoundOut


First digital artist residency on The Big Idea


The Big Idea Web has over one million visits in 12 months


The Big Idea celebrates turning 10 years old


It’s where I go when I want to know what’s on, what’s hot, what’s not. I go there when I want to know what’s happening in the arts, when I want advice or professional expertise. – Jackie Hay

On the map – getting results Our big idea works In the 12 months to March 2012 the website recorded:

• • • • •

over one million visits

• • •

on average, 2.7 pages are viewed per visit

over 400,000 unique visitors celebrating the first decade

over 30,000 community members over 70% of the visits are repeats each visitor stays for an average of 3.2 minutes average 300+ new members each month over 50,000 different visitors each month

Over the last 10 years:

• • • • •

26, 000 jobs advertised

50 creative entrepreneurs have been

14, 000 articles published 6,000 works of art shown 23,000 events listed over 30 significant organizations have

The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

accessed the services of TBI Assist accelerated through ART venture

We launched The Big Idea website not knowing whether New Zealanders would adopt it – it was a leap of faith. We’ve grown by word of mouth and our community has become increasingly digitally savvy. Our thinking for the next 10 years is focused on pushing the boundaries to expand opportunities, markets and services for the arts, creative people and New Zealand’s economy. Sandi Morrison | Foundation Trustee | The Big Idea Charitable Trust




Windswept by Ben Foster

The Big Idea Charitable Trust A financial summary 2010–2011 Where the money comes from Grant funding


Service contracts


Self generated income [TBI Assist/Enterprise]


Donations/Fundraising 1% $576,634 celebrating the first decade

Total Income for year ended 30 June 2011

Where the money goes Delivery of service to online community


Delivery of service contracts


TBI Online Enterprise


TBI Assist delivery costs


Management & administration Total Expenditure for year ended 30 June 2011

12% $560,346

Services to online community – 21% The cost of providing editorial services The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

& support for our extraordinary community of practitioners, organisations & enterprises in the arts & creative sector. Keeping our virtual ‘home’ intact by maintaining functionality & IT support. Delivery of service contracts – 49% Delivering excellence and innovation in programmes and services to our major clients. For example, The Big Idea is the delivery partner for a suite of programmes resourced by ART (Arts Regional Trust). TBI Online Enterprise – 9% Promoting and testing ideas and opportunities with our creative community, profiling jobs, ‘happenings’ and events; encouraging enterprise and innovation and attracting one million eyeballs over the year. TBI Assist – 9% Providing project leadership, expertise and creative solutions with our colleagues in local government & the remarkable range of organisations in NZ’s arts, creative and community sectors. Management & administration – 12% Our living & management costs - rent, insurance, commodities, office equipment & our part-time executive staff.




The Invisible City photographed by Peter Kurdulija

Through hard work in the sector, The Big Idea now generates $5.30 for every $1.00 received in grants. The Big Idea Charitable Trust is committed to role modelling the entrepreneurial behaviour we have been championing. As a Trust, we have pushed the boundaries, promoting strategic and thought leadership, recognising all the while, that growth and innovation

As a new Board Member appointed to lift fundraising capacity in 2011, I invite you to consider the amazing value delivered by The Big Idea to the creative sector. Over the past decade the organisation has pushed itself strenuously to reduce funding dependency and increase business sustainability for the longterm. We are delighted to celebrate walking the talk, and grateful for the grants received over the years - many of those pitched towards arts organisations with an ambition to become sustainable – however, we

in our social as well as economic

still need financial support from donors and the

lives embodies challenge and risk.

community we serve.

We do all this while maintaining

Lisa Bates | Trustee

rigorous financial management.

The Big Idea Charitable Trust

It has been wonderful to support TBI as a

but many issues still remain pressing for the

Trustee and to be a member of this thriving

creative sector in NZ. Public policy, investment

on-line community. As a music manager I

practices and weak infrastructure all still

spend my days on the business of creativity: TBI

conspire to hold back the sector’s development

helps keep me in touch with news, views and

and growth.

developments in the creative industries.

We need new ways of thinking; innovative

Lorraine Barry | Trustee

solutions to complex issues.

The Big Idea Charitable Trust

Increasingly in a post-industrial age, new economies and social systems will depend on

Our ongoing success will be shaped by

knowledge and unique intellectual property

Strong organisation, effective governance,

generated through creativity and innovation.

sufficient funding and other resources, targeted marketing and promotion, continuous

Innovation in New Zealand’s creative sector,

improvement, creative and entrepreneurial

combined with entrepreneurial thinking,

thinking, knowledge management, and skills

represents the step-change needed for the



In 2011, the creative sector made up 6.3% of New Zealand’s total employment and contributed over $8 billion to the economy annually. Creative people think laterally - imaginatively and metaphorically, challenging the conventional. Their signs and symbols have

If I had a mission statement it would be: we need to get right the idea of a country where talent wants to live...a place where talent can thrive because, if we can get that right, creative people will want to live here, work here and export their capability to the world.

the capacity to break down usual ways of thinking and seeing. This, in turn, allows for the development of new visions, ideas, products,

Sir Paul Callaghan - Survive & Thrive 2011: Keynote speaker address

processes and services.




The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

10 years on, in 2012 things have improved,

celebrating the first decade

Into the future – leading the way

The crew – making it happen Conceivers – the original idea


The Big Idea | Te Aria Nui

celebrating the first decade

Liz Civil. Isabel Evans. Penny Hagen. Peter Harrison. Richard Howard. Maggie Gresson.

ASB Community Trust. Auckland Council.

Sandi Morrison. Helen Schamroth. Elisabeth

Andrew & Jenny Smith. Annie Coney. Connells

Vaneveld. Jacquie Clarke. Andrew Clifford.

Bay Sculpture Trust. Creative New Zealand.

Andrew Ferguson. Chris Hegan. Shawn Lee.

Auckland Tourism Events & Economic

Amokura Panoho. Igor Portugal. John Ringer.

Development. Pub Charity. Lion Foundation.

Caroline Robinson. Baruch Ter Wal. Bronson

SKYCITY Community Trust Auckland.


Governors - The Big Idea Te Aria Nui Charitable Trust Board

Believers – who have worked or are working in this project

Lorraine Barry. Lisa Bates. Sandi Morrison QSM. Prashanta Mukherjee.

Mark Amery. Ruia Aperahama. Cathy Aronson. Craig Barlow. Helen Baxter. Chris Bell. Lorraine Blackley. David Booth. Jon Bridges. Mike Chunn. Jacquie Clarke. Jeff Clarke. Andrew Clifford. Ila

We are proud of the role we have played in

Couch. Andrew Ferguson. Anna Fomison. James

projecting New Zealand’s creative sector

Hadley. Cass Hessom-Williams. Mei Hill. Richard

globally, as well as the national coverage

Howard. Sarah Houbolt. Lena Kovac. Erica Law.

achieved. TBI Assist has also contributed

Margaret Lewis. Renee Liang. Ben McNicol.

strongly to the creative community of

Sandi Morrison. Philip Patston. Caroline

Aotearoa and its ability to build capacity.

Robinson. Ande Schurr. Emmy Seccombe. Pip

Looking forward, I expect us to break further

Sheehan. Jason Smith. Timothy Smith. Antony

ground by driving creativity into all aspects

Spalding. Elise Sterback. Jade Tang. Hinu te

of the New Zealand economy - science,

Hau. Elisabeth Vaneveld. Jodi Yeats. Simon

technology, industry, commerce, health and

Young. Simon Zhou.

even agriculture. After all, many of the most advanced societies in the world are turning their focus to the creative sector and its potential to innovate in business. Prashanta Mukherjee | Trustee

We wish The Big Idea many more years of continued success and growth. We salute their innovation, generosity of spirit, inquisitive nature, integrity and passion for the growth of the arts in New Zealand. – New Zealand Dance Company

Were it not for the strategic thinkers, creative workers, tireless helpers, enthusiastic supporters, fearless risk-takers and flexible specialists who have worked with The Big Idea, the ship would have sunk long ago. We thank you all.

CONTACT US: The Big Idea Charitable Trust

TBI Assist

for all queries including advertising and sponsorship

Elisabeth Vaneveld | Senior Consultant

p | 027 446 1071

m | 027 490 7113

e |

e |

The Big Idea would like to thank: Hawkins&Co. for the design & Soar Printing for the printing, of this booklet.




Š The Big Idea 2012

Soul of the Deep by Sofia Minson

The Big Idea celebrates the first decade  

The Big Idea celebrates its first decade - from 2001 to 2011. Based in New Zealand and an idea before its time, is wher...

The Big Idea celebrates the first decade  

The Big Idea celebrates its first decade - from 2001 to 2011. Based in New Zealand and an idea before its time, is wher...