TEDxTauranga News

A Recount of TEDxTauranga 2016: What fits your future?

by Heather Logie on 22 November 2016

in News

It started with a shady looking character wondering onto stage… he’s our stand-in MC for the day?

He clears the stage for our mihi from Pahu Akuhata, our respected local Kaumatua from Ngati Ranginui and Kapahaka performance from Arataki School. The bright smiling faces and thumping feet build energy in the room and we’re all focused for the day ahead.

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Our eyes are drawn to the big screens where we see the Arena doors open and two very smart machines stealthily roll into the break out area. The winners of the “win a ride to TEDxTauranga in a Tesla” competition are here and we’re ready to roll.

The day started with a confronting question: who is truly to blame for the environmental damage caused by farming. The farmer or us?

New Zealand highly values its clean, green image and its multi-million-dollar tourism industry. But regulating farming conflicts with the business context in which farmers operate. It’s like controlling air pollution by telling all car salesmen in Tauranga they’ve reached their quota of sales in August, and can’t sell another vehicle until January!

Mike and Sharon Barton challenged us all to think about what we as consumers are willing to pay for the true cost of our meat – meat that is produced on farms which actively protect the environment? What if we aren’t willing to pay? Either our water will degrade or food production will be pushed offshore to countries which don’t value their environment. Encouragingly it seems we are willing to pay a little bit more. And maybe awareness is the first step.

At the end of the first break I find myself sitting next to Gordon. He tells me that the real cost of a McDonalds hamburger is something like $30! I had an inkling but I’m still a little stunned. In the days since TEDxTauranga, I’ve told at least 5 people about this little discovery. And I’m googling… meatonomics tell me that each time someone buys a McDonald’s hamburger, society is out of pocket more than $7 USD for the associated healthcare costs to come, animal cruelty issues to be dealt with, and environmental damage that can’t be undone!

I’m left quietly uncomfortable by Mike and Sharon’s final question: who is the real polluter?

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Darwin’s daughter Anne died of an infection which, 70 years later, would have been easily treated with antibiotics. In the years since antibiotics were discovered, our overuse of them, and the natural ability of bacteria to evolve and develop resistance, has led us almost full circle. Now it’s superbugs!

Something I didn’t know? The Majority of antibiotics used today are used in the agriculture sector – trying to keep animals healthy in sub-optimal conditions! Oh great… now I’m thinking about the real cost of hamburgers again?

But Dr Heather Hendrickson gives me hope. She is hunting bacteriophages – tiny naturally occurring viruses which attack bacteria. Where antibiotics are blunt instruments in the treatment of infection, and kill as many good bacteria as bad; bacteriophages are very specific and targeted. The most exciting thing is that we’ve discovered very few so far, and they’re not hard to find. They’re in the playground! And they’re providing hope in that agriculture sector as well. Bacteriophages are being used to combat PSA.

As we settle in for the third talk, I hear a lady behind me ask if this might be an option for pregnant women who can’t risk taking anti-biotics? Her friend suggests they go find Heather in the first break and ask. That’s what TEDxTauranga is all about.


Dr Johan Morreau posed a simple question: just how important are the first 1,000 days of a child’s life? It seemed a simple question but within 10 minutes, most of the audience was in tears.

While the health system has delivered advances in the treatment of medical conditions over the past 40 years, it is still failing our children in those critical first 2 ½ years. Dr Morreau highlighted the importance of a child’s learning attachment and affection, empathy, fun and self-worth in those first 1,000 days of life. If they don’t, there is a very good chance things will go wrong in the next 32,000 days. He presented a harsh reality for the increasing number of children living in poverty (now estimated at 25-30% compared to 10% in 1980): children with parents who are financially struggling and stressed with no good parenting models and supports, living in damp, cold housing with inadequate food, and no fun.

It was a very sobering picture when compared to countries like Holland which provide all new parents with free in-home support in the first weeks of a baby’s life, and a social welfare safety net which ensures a parent can still parent, even if other parts of their lives don’t go to plan.

Johan’s take home message? We should be investing in parenting, not in prisons. When I get home I google “Holland, prisons”. The first article that comes up?  Netherlands doesn’t have enough criminals to fill its prisons as crime to drop. “New Zealand, prisons”? NZ’s prison population booming. I’m already drafting a letter to … anyone who’ll listen. And I’m hoping the TEDxTauranga community will be right behind me!

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I was really excited to hear from our fourth speaker Donna Miles-Mojab. She promised to challenge what I knew about a women’s right, or lack thereof, to wear a hijab. While the papers were peppered with articles about the French burkini ban, I remained naively ill-informed.

I didn’t know that a law mandating the unveiling of women could be just as damaging as a law to cover up. In fact, it could sow the seeds of extremism to follow! Forced modernization of Iran in 1939 did just this. Women were forced to remove their veils and were subsequently abused and marginalized, becoming prisoners in their own homes. This cultivated a hatred of westernization, which contributed in 1979 to the fall of Iran to an extremist Islamic regime, which then forced women to again wear the hijab and loose clothing. 

I am convinced then that we need to trust women’s own choices. Donna shares the individual choices women make about why they choose to, or not to, wear the hijab. In a world where a women’s worth is determined by her sexual allure, covering up can be freeing. And given the likelihood that force in either direction is only likely to fuel reactionary responses, surely trusting women to decide for themselves is the only sensible option?

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It’s time for our first break! There are delicious goodies on offer but it’s hard to politely eat while holding a serious conversation about valuing social capital! I’m munching down a frittata but before I know it, Justin Timberlake is crooning over the load-speakers and we’re all scurrying back to a new seat (under strict instructions to sit somewhere different in each session).

Up first is a fresh, lively session from the Jason McIver Collective, a trio based in Auckland who warmed the crowd up and had everyone toe-tapping, clapping and head bobbing along!

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We then turn to the big screens for a TED video which is a modern, very human perspective on the refugee experience in Europe – a story which unravels the mystery behind two wetsuits washed up on beaches in Norway and the Netherlands. An eye-opening talk from Anders Fjellberg: Two nameless bodies washed up on the beach. Here are their stories, and one which is well-worth sharing.


Psychopaths…what we know about them comes almost entirely from the criminal justice system: they are the Ted Bundy’s and Mark Chopper-Reid’s of the world. But what if we were to see it as a spectrum of psychopathic traits? And accept that those traits are functioning in society in ways we know very little about? This is the possibility raised by our next speaker Dr Armon Tamatea.

When we get down to it, we know very little about psychopaths who manage to function in society because they do not come into contact with the systems which document their behaviour in detail. Psychopathic traits include superficial charm and charisma (ability to engage and build networks), fearlessness (resilience to stress and the ability to make tough decisions), and lack of empathy (an ability to pursue goals without regard for relationship costs). Dr Tamatea posits that these traits can be channelled to productive pursuits and that a better understanding of psychopaths can tell us what we are willing to tolerate as a society.

I can almost feel the collective buzz in the room. It’s a lightbulb moment. How can asking “what would a psychopath do?” help us make to make tough decisions in our own lives?

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Just as everyone in the room starts examining their loved-ones for psychopathic traits, Jody Jackson-Becerra steps onto the stage to open our minds to the power of Fagogo – traditional Pacific island story-telling.

She rolls out her pandanas mat and starts to weave a story. But we play a part and as the story unfolds, the audience is carried along with her. We can see island sands, coconut trees, bountiful feasts, dark caves, disgruntled elders, little people… and by the end we’ve all absorbed a very important lesson but we’re not quite sure how: be careful what you wish for!

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Our last speaker in this session Michael Hershman has flown direct from Rio where the world’s best are battling it out for sporting glory. Michael Hershman clearly loves sport and believes that the spirit of competition inherent in sport, must be protected.

He is clearly disheartened by the influence which money has had on fundamental ethics and values in sport, and the corruption which he has seen trickle down from big sponsorship to infect athletes themselves. He reminds us to teach our children to play for the fun of it; “to win with humility and lose with dignity”.

At the end of his talk, Hershman offers a shared moment of recognition for the sportsmanship demonstrated by New Zealand Olympian Nikki Hamblin in her qualifying heat for the 5,000m. It’s a welcome reminder that the kiwi sporting spirit is alive and well.

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After a short break during which I drool over the Tesla Model S parked outside (I cannot work out how to open the fancy electric door handles?)

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… we are back into session 3 which kicks off with a provocative poetry session from the amazingly talented Te Kahu Rolleston. He challenges us to make the TEDx concept more accessible to a wider range of people, and to question how the education system might better value traditional forms of knowledge.

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Then an enlightening TED video by Tabetha Boyajian: The most mysterious start in the universe.


As Tabetha finishes, our MC Mark Wright welcomes Joshua Konowe, a start-up veteran who believes that trust is the cornerstone of success in business.

I’ve never previously thought how defeatist it is that we start new ventures by first preparing for their demise? It’s like getting the divorce out of the way before the relationship has even begun. And yet we know that so many of our decisions in the market-place are built on recommendations from family or friends – built on trust? Somehow we have developed enough trust in companies like Amazon and AirBnB for them to hold personal information on us? How did they do it?

He proposes three essential ingredients for business success: transparency (fiscal at least), purpose (clarity about the problem you are solving or the pain you are removing) and execution (the ability to measure results). I decide to only work for trustworthy companies from now on. We’ll see how that goes.

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Shama Sukul Lee obviously had a perfect life. Or at least, the version of perfection she’d always thought she was chasing. Until she realized it wasn’t enough and she began to shed her adopted personalities. She describes her journey from atheist, vegan feminist (in her own words “a very angry person”) to someone with clarity of self and purpose: belief that she could do or be anything, gratitude for the grace and strength of women in her life, and a deep love and respect for animals.

Her honest and real story about a journey toward vegetarianism had us all in fits of laughter. But out of that journey came an incredible mission: to make meat from sunshine and plants by deconstructing the food chain and skipping the animal. It sounded impossible, but she’s done it. And I can’t wait for green-pea chicken to hit the shelves of our supermarkets to I can alleviate some of my “mostly-vegetarian” guilt.

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The last speaker in session three, Robin Youngson was able to share his own story toward campaigning for compassionate healthcare. Over twelve years spent trying to educate and campaign for better treatment of patients emotional healing within the healthcare system, Robin was able to share some insightful learnings about how to best engage in change.

He has learned what does not work: being a moral crusader taking the high ground, being an evangelist filled with rational arguments and lots of evidence, being an expert amidst people who clearly know their profession, focusing on problems rather than solutions, and trying to do all this within a standard business model. His take away message is that successfully influencing people is about finding connection rather than creating separation (them and us).

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As we all head into the last break out session, the bar-leaner conversations are becoming more expansive. We are welcomed back to the musical stylings of local cover band Ink-kahoots,

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and then the hilarious musings of James Veitch: What happens when you reply to spam, our final TED video.    


Bryan Winters gave us a unique insight into the importance that numbers and percentages play in our lives. Tracing a quick history of both via the decimal system, he suggests that numbers have dramatically shaped our beliefs and politics. I hadn’t previously thought about how the reduction of people to percentages and statistics might have brought with it an ability to see guilt as social rather than personal. Through being able to count the poor and generalize their condition, it became possible to use this evidence as a tool to shape and change society.

Bryan’s final comment hits home: decimal is truly the only language which the whole world understands. I’m brought back to Dr Morreau’s presentation and feel again the impact of hearing that 25 – 30% of New Zealand children are now growing up in poverty. I’m grateful that we have this knowledge, and that our Government shares a global language which makes it accountable for these statistics.

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Our MC takes the stage to recognize the winner of the Enspire challenge supported by TEDxTauranga. This year’s winning entry is a short film by Christine Khor. She presents a challenge to planners and builders throughout the country – to think smaller as a way to address the rising cost of housing and increasing inability for young people to enter the market. It’s a fantastic lead in to our next speaker.


Engineers are trained to drain wetlands and bury streams so that we can build roads, shopping malls and houses in our tightly packed urban landscapes. But engineer David Boothway reminds us what price we pay for all that hard surface: increased risk of flooding and landslips as well as more devastating damage when those events do happen. And the costs of recovery from these events are astronomical for our local and regional governments!

He challenged us all to become more aware of the urban spaces we journey through each day, to remap the blue lines which are underneath all that concrete and bitumen. And if we are brave enough to go the next step – to open up these waterways and re-green our urban spaces, there will be associated benefits as well – like a reintroduction of community green spaces in which children can play and the social fabric can be strengthened.

It brings me hope that there are engineers and planners who are choosing to work with the natural environment, rather than against it. 

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Our last speaker for the day is a US trained ER doctor who moved to New Zealand 3 years ago. Dr Michael Jones came from a health system which aggressively treats patient pain as a first step in treatment. It’s also a system which has in-built policies which rewards doctors for good patient feedback – of which pain management is a key measure. The result? Lots and lots of prescription opioid (narcotic) pain medications. The sad statistical consequence? Accidental overdose from prescription medications has become the leading cause of accidental death in the USA – it’s an “opioid epidemic”!

By contrast, an 80-year old Taranaki farmer came into the ER with his leg gouged open by his bull. He would only accept Panadol as his leg was patched closed again. And he was back out in the paddock again the next day!

The conclusion? Pain is universal. But our response to it is an individual choice. But if this is the case, what at a societal level is happening that results in fewer kiwis individually choosing to lose it over pain? Dr Jones presents some interesting observations. Perhaps we have a culture of toughness? Or maybe it’s our connection to nature and acceptance that pain and healing must run their course? Or maybe it’s that we empower our nurses to moderate in the treatment of patients?

There is also the policy explanation. In New Zealand, it’s just generally a lot more bother and hassle to prescribe these types of medications. And so doctors are less likely to offer them. Whatever the reason, it’s clear we should be thankful for our kiwi response to pain.

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Rubbish! One of the goals of TEDxTauranga is to become a zero-waste event. Marty Hoffart, a speaker from the 2014 event is an expert on the matter and he helped the team achieve a nearly zero-waste event, and a quarter-filled rubbish bag was all that went to the landfill. A pretty remarkable achievement!

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We also had a hilarious revelation, our hilariously shady MC dressed as a janitor revealed our very own professional actor Mark Wright. The audience was quite surprised as he peeled off his moustache and began to recite Shakespeare! Mark definitely added the element of comedy to the MC role this year.

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By the end of the day, my head is full to bursting. I know that the threads from today are going to travel with me for days and weeks to come; into conversations with friends, family and co-workers. I already know that some of my personal beliefs have been nudged and I wonder how I’ll carry the burden. Because you see, being a part of TEDxTauranga comes with responsibility… responsibility to carry those ideas beyond the ASB Arena. Every one of us was so privileged to be here. What will you do with that privilege?


Photo Credits : Richard Robinson and Natalie Murdoch

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What Have We Got Planned for TEDxTauranga 2016?

by Heather Logie on 12 August 2016

in News

TEDxTauranga 2016 is fast approaching. For those of you who have tickets already we’ll see you next Saturday! For those who haven’t had a chance to get your tickets yet head to Eventfinda where you can buy online, or find out how to buy tickets over the phone or in person.

9:00am Arrive early, grab a coffee, and meet and greet some fellow TEDx supporters.
10:00am Be in your seat ready for Speaker session 1: Sharon & Mike Barton, Heather Hendrickson, Johan Morreau, and Donna Miles-Mojab
11:40am Break for a rejuvenating early lunch. Grab a vegetarian frittata and a bliss ball, stretch your legs and check out some of the exhibits in Tech Alley
12:50pm Head back to your seats ready to be entertained. Then move in to Speaker session 2: Armon Tamatea, Jody Jackson-Becerra, and Michael Hershman
2:15pm Break for afternoon tea. Replenish your energy levels with a plate of samosas and a fresh fruit smoothie, find a comfortable corner, and dive into a discussion about which talk has left you filled with more questions.
2:45pm Head back to your seats in time for a musical delight and then in to Speaker session 3: Joshua Konowe, Shama Sukul Lee, and Robin Youngson
4:20pm Break a refueling snack of hot soup and bread as you ponder what might come next.
4:35pm Speaker session 4: Bryan Winters, David Boothway and Michael Jones
5:50pm Closing perspective and thoughts from the day

Times are approximate and subject to change on the day.

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Talk Teaser – Michael Hershman

July 26, 2016

Reports of drug cheating splash across our headlines every week. Systemic in Russia, crossing disciplines, its presence is felt throughout sport. Anti-Corruption pioneer Michael Hershman will shine a light into the dark corners of this world wide practice.

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Introducing Joshua Konowe and Armon Tamatea

June 27, 2016

It’s time to announce our next two speakers! One is a highly successful and awarded entrepreneur coming all the way from New York and the second is both a clinical psychologist and a senior lecturer in psychology at the University of Waikato. Get your tickets now for TEDxTauranga 2016 through Eventfinda. Joshua Konowe TEDxTauranga 2016 […]

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Introducing Our Next Two Speakers

June 25, 2016

The TEDxTauranga 2016 volunteer team is proud to announce our next two speakers for this years event on the 20th August. Get your tickets now through Eventfinda. Mike and Sharon Barton TEDxTauranga 2016 Speakers Firstly we have Mike and Sharon who are heavily involved in the science and policy driving protection of Lake Taupo’s water […]

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TEDxTauranga 2016 On Sale Now!

May 10, 2016

  We are very pleased to announce that tickets for TEDxTauranga 2016 are now on sale via the Eventfinda website. You can also purchase tickets by phoning 0800 BUY TIX (289 849) or visiting an Eventfinda ticketing outlet. Head to tedxtauranga.com/news for all the latest details on TEDxTauranga 2016. We look forward to seeing you on the 20th […]

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TICKETS ON SALE TUESDAY!

May 5, 2016

TEDxTauranga 2016: Tickets on sale Tuesday WE KNOW THE DATE WE KNOW TWO OF THE SPEAKERS AND NOW WE KNOW WHEN THE TICKETS ARE ON SALE This Tuesday, at 9am, tickets for TEDxTauranga 2016 officially go on sale. The TEDxTauranga volunteer team is excited to bring you 10 live speakers, 3 TED videos, live entertainment […]

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This Year TEDxTauranga is Bringing the World to You!

April 29, 2016

This Year TEDxTauranga is Bringing the World to You! We at TEDxTauranga are absolutely thrilled to announce Michael Hershman as our second speaker who will be live on stage on the 20th August. Michael Hershman, based in Washington D.C., is an internationally recognised expert on matters relating to transparency, accountability and corruption. Michael has also been recognised […]

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First Speaker Announcement for TEDxTauranga 2016

April 20, 2016

First Speaker Announcement for TEDxTauranga 2016 We are excited to announce the first of our speakers for TEDxTauranga 2016:- Bryan Winters Bryan Winters has survived several Information Technology revolutions in his thirty years in the industry around the world. With experience ranging from the once largest company on the planet to being self employed, he […]

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NEWSFLASH – AUGUST 20th 2016

April 13, 2016

NEWSFLASH – AUGUST 20th 2016 What’s special about August 20th? It’s the new date for TEDxTauranga! The team have been working feverishly to bring you a better than ever TEDxTauranga! What’s up next? April 19th we’ll be announcing the first three of our speakers for 2016. Tickets go on sale 10 May so mark the […]

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TEDxTauranga 2016: Speakers Update

February 24, 2016

TEDxTauranga2016: Speakers Update Nominations for Speakers for TEDxTauranga 2016 have now closed and we are well into meeting and interviewing speakers for the event. The quality of nominations this year has blown us away and it has generated some keen discussions on who should be progressed to the next stage. Our “speakers team” have been […]

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If you were invited on stage for TEDxTauranga 2016, what idea would you share?

December 18, 2015

If you were invited on stage for TEDxTauranga 2016, what idea would you share? If not you, then who do you know that has an idea worth spreading? Nominate a speaker for TEDxTauranga 2015 or, Apply to Speak yourself! Who are we looking for? Someone who can tell us an idea worth spreading Someone who […]

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Stephen Lethbridge + John Boone + Phil & Tilley: Last 3 Videos From TEDxTauranga 2015 Now Online

November 28, 2015

Good news! I just updated our video page with the last 3 videos from TEDxTauranga 2015! Stephen Lethbridge: “How to create a workforce that can answer ungoogleable questions” Watch on our video page Watch straight from YouTube John Boone: “Can 1000 people who just met, make music together?” Watch on our video page Watch straight from […]

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Jason Edgecombe + Michael Quintern: 2 More Videos From TEDxTauranga 2015 Now Online

November 21, 2015

Good news! I just updated our video page with another 2 videos from TEDxTauranga 2015! Jason Edgecombe: “Do you always read the label? When diagnosis can suppress recovery” Watch on our video page Watch straight from YouTube Michael Quintern: “The 600 million year old technology beneath our feet” Watch on our video page Watch straight […]

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Who Would Make A Great Speaker for TEDxTauranga 2016?

November 18, 2015

Nominations/Applications are now open for speakers for TEDxTauranga 2016! We are looking for speakers who are either based in the Bay of Plenty or have close ties to our region. Who should we talk to next? Nominate a speaker for TEDxTauranga 2015 or, Apply to Speak yourself!   Who are we looking for? Someone who […]

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Sir Ray Avery + Catherine Iorns: 2 More Videos From TEDxTauranga 2015 Now Online

November 14, 2015

Good news! I just updated our video page with another 2 videos from TEDxTauranga 2015! Sir Ray Avery: “Disruption, Innovation, Spin-offs. 3 reasons New Zealanders are better at turning dreams into realities” Watch on our video page Watch straight from YouTube Catherine Iorns: “How to use human rights law to protect New Zealand’s natural environment” […]

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Rachel van der Gugten + Marcus Winter: 2 More Videos From TEDxTauranga 2015 Now Online

November 7, 2015

Good news! I just updated our video page with another 2 videos from TEDxTauranga 2015! Rachel van der Gugten: “Fart free for life: Why good digestion is essential” Watch on our video page Watch straight from YouTube Marcus Winter: “The Battle of Gate Pa, told in sand” Watch on our video page Watch straight from […]

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Bronwen Connor + Harold Hillman: Another 2 Videos From TEDxTauranga 2015 Now Online

October 31, 2015

Good news! I just updated our video page with another 2 videos from TEDxTauranga 2015! Bronwen Connor: “How to turn skin cells into brain cells” Watch on our video page Watch straight from YouTube Harold Hillman: “Should you fit in or stand out? Finding your authentic voice” Watch on our video page Watch straight from […]

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First 2 Videos From TEDxTauranga 2015 Now Online: Ellis Bryers + David Pattemore

October 19, 2015

Good news! I just updated our video page with the first 2 videos from TEDxTauranga 2015! Ellis Bryers: “Our cultural identity as New Zealanders. Our Kiwi-Tanga” Watch on our video page Watch straight from YouTube David Pattemore: “The pollination puzzle. Unexpected alternatives to honey bees” Watch on our video page Watch straight from YouTube Also in that […]

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A Recount of TEDxTauranga 2015: Think, Thrive, Transform

July 26, 2015

A sold out crowd. 1010 lanyards collected. 1010 faces turned towards the big screen. We were ready for TEDxTauranga to begin. I found myself sitting next to one of last year’s speaker’s who was able to describe how charged the speakers will be feeling and how many weeks and months of polishing had gone into […]

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A Few Hours Left To Get Your Ticket For TEDxTauranga (10am to 7pm Saturday 25 July 2015)

July 24, 2015

We have about 70 tickets left (out of 1,000) so this is your last chance to get your ticket for TEDxTauranga (if you haven’t already). (If you have your tickets, that’s great, but don’t just sit there, spread the word for us!) Do the people in the collage below from our 2014 event look happy? You […]

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“What Did TEDxTauranga Do For You?” Interview with Heather Vail

July 18, 2015

We are mere days away from TEDxTauranga 2015! Click here to grab a ticket before they disappear. Today we speak to a previous attendee about why you should come! Interview with Heather Vail Q: “Who are you and what keeps you busy?” I’m Heather Vail – an educator, family member, someone who is curious about […]

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If You’re Interested in Big and Important Ideas, You’re Going to Want to See This

July 4, 2015

Today we are 3 weeks away from our community’s opportunity to think, thrive, and transform at TEDxTauranga on 25 July 2015. This event links Tauranga to the global phenomenon of TED where ‘ideas worth spreading’ unite people around in the world through inspiring stories. TEDxTauranga will feature 10 speakers on stage with 3 live entertainment acts. (And we’ve […]

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How would you explain TED, TEDx, TEDxTauranga to someone?

June 26, 2015

Did you know that I struggle explaining TED, TEDx and TEDxTauranga to brand new people? It’s pretty easy when they’ve heard of TED Talks or watched a few talks from TED.com, because I can just say “Well, watching those videos is great, but it’s even better to watch them live, right in front of you […]

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“What Did TEDxTauranga Do For You?” Interview with Jason Whitelaw

June 19, 2015

In the lead up to TEDxTauranga 2015, we talk to some of last year’s attendees to find out why you should come. Get the full run down of the TEDxTauranga 2015 event here. Interview with Jason Whitelaw (Tauranga) Q. Who are you, and what keeps you busy? I’m Jason, my business partner and I run […]

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Speakers Announced for TEDxTauranga 2015 (25 July)

May 25, 2015

Great news! For TEDxTauranga 2015 (25 July) we will have the following 10 speakers live on stage. (Got your tickets yet? Buy Your Tickets For TEDxTauranga Now) In alphabetical order, they are: 1. Sir Ray Avery Sir Ray Avery, a leading New Zealand scientist, innovator and inventor. Avery’s inventions include: Acuset IV Flow Controller: A device […]

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Have you watched the video of reactions to last years TEDxTauranga?

April 25, 2015

Hi, my name is Roberta, and it has been a great privilege working with the team putting together the 2015 event. Volunteers are so amazing and the passion for TEDxTauranga make this one of the most exciting groups I have ever worked with. I’m going to ask you to do one thing today: Just put TEDxTauranga […]

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Second Speaker Announced for TEDxTauranga: Find Out How To Turn Skin Cells into Brain Cells with Professor Bronwen Connor

April 21, 2015

The future of medicine has reached new heights with scientists now able to take mature human skin cells and “reprogram” them back to stem cells to replace tissue lost through disease or injury. Photo Credit: Fiona Goodall, East & Bays Courier This is Associate Professor of Neuroscience at the University of Auckland, Bronwen Connor. Bronwen has […]

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First Speaker Announced For TEDxTauranga: Disruptor, Inventor, Innovator, Sir Ray Avery

April 15, 2015

Photo Credit: Newstalk ZB This is Sir Ray Avery, a leading New Zealand scientist, innovator and inventor. And we are confident that he will challenge you and prompt you to Think, Thrive and Transform when you see him live on stage during TEDxTauranga on 25th July 2015. You might be interested in his TEDxAuckland talk in 2010: […]

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4 TED.com Videos That Amazed Me This Week And Stretched My Mind

February 13, 2015

I’ve watched over 1000 TED.com videos, but I watched 4 in a row this week that amazed me! I could actually feel them reconfiguring my brain 🙂 Here’s a 5 minute video summary of my favourite bits: Want to watch the full videos? Enjoy! Sheldon Nesdale Lead Organiser of TEDxTauranga

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98 Reasons Why The Nominations For Speaking At TEDxTauranga 2015 Have Now Closed

January 30, 2015

Good news, we have closed nominations for speakers for TEDxTauranga 2015! It’s good news because we’ve had 98 nominations to work through this year which is awesome! There are 5 stages in our speaker selection process: Nomination Phone Interview Face-to-Face interview (which we call “Meet & Greet”) Practice Talk (where our semi-finalists present their 15 minute talks to us […]

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Hooray! Another Video From TEDxTauranga 2014: Dr. Rodney Ford

September 26, 2014

I just updated our video page with the 9th (and final) video from TEDxTauranga 2014. Dr. Rodney Ford: Daily Bread: Can ANY human body handle gluten? Watch on our video page Watch straight from YouTube Yay! In other news, I have assembled my team for TEDxTauranga 2015. I have 32 amazing volunteers with me this […]

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2 More Videos From TEDxTauranga 2014: Nicole Masters + James Ross

September 15, 2014

I just updated our video page with another 2 videos from TEDxTauranga 2014. Nicole Masters: Down and Dirty; a pile of reasons to fall in love with soil Watch on our video page Watch straight from YouTube James A. Ross: Learning Differently: What if words in every book leaped up and came to life? Watch […]

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2 More Videos From TEDxTauranga 2014: Vikki Kelly + Dr. Liza Schneider

September 4, 2014

I just updated our video page with another 2 videos from TEDxTauranga 2014. Vikki Kelly: The three second kiss – why our future depends on it Watch on our video page Watch straight from YouTube Dr. Liza Schneider: Sustainable healthcare for our pets- why the answer is not in the bag Watch on our video […]

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Reactions to TEDxTauranga 2014

August 25, 2014

Below is a list of testimonials & reactions that we’ve collected over the last 5 weeks since TEDxTauranga (you can add your own to the comment section at the bottom). 4 things for you to do next: Note the date for TEDxTauranga if you haven’t already: Saturday 25 July 2015 Volunteer to join the 2015 […]

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TEDxAuckland 2014: 18 Hours of Awesomeness

August 18, 2014

TEDxAuckland ran from 10am to 6.00pm on Saturday 16 Aug 2014: 8.0 hours of awesomeness.   But my day started at 6am because I drove up from Tauranga for it, and got back home at midnight. I’m still counting the 5 hours driving because those were awesome too. I was either talking to my car buddies […]

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2 More Videos From TEDxTauranga 2014: Puawai Cairns + Dr. Ian G. McLean

August 18, 2014

I just updated our video page with another 2 videos from TEDxTauranga 2014. Dr. Ian G. McLean: Love your children? Keep their enemies close Watch on our video page Watch straight from YouTube Puawai Cairns: Forgotten grandfathers: Newly discovered stories from the Maori men of World War I Watch on our video page Watch straight […]

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First 2 Videos From TEDxTauranga 2014 Now Online: Ben Warren + Marty Hoffart

August 6, 2014

I just updated our video page with the first 2 videos from TEDxTauranga 2014 (+ the 3 official TED videos we played). Ben Warren: Modern lives are longer lives? Why that might NOT be true for you Watch on our video page Watch straight from YouTube Marty Hoffart: Still a Clean, Green New Zealand? Three […]

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Can you help put together a TEDx event in Hamilton or Rotorua?

July 25, 2014

Hi! During TEDxTauranga on Saturday I talked to several people from Hamilton that were interested in putting a team together to make a TEDx event in Hamilton. I also talked to a few people from Rotorua who wanted a TEDx event for Rotorua. To help get both of these events started, I’ve arranged a meeting in each […]

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TEDxTauranga 2014: How did the 2nd TEDx event in Tauranga go?

July 21, 2014

Well, well, well, what can I say about yesterday’s TEDx Tauranga Event?  Nothing other than AWESOME would be the only answer!! I know that we organisers had one heck of a great time seeing 9 months of work come to fabulous fruition, and it looked to me like the audience had a great time too?  […]

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Our Speakers Announced: 9 Great Reasons To Join Us For TEDxTauranga

July 7, 2014

We are super stoked to announce our line-up of speakers for TEDxTauranga 2014! Hooray!   1. Puawai Cairns Talk Title: Forgotten grandfathers: Newly discovered stories from the Maori men of World War I. Puawai is a Curator at Te Papa Tongarewa. Let her take you on a journey discovering the motivations and emotions of the Maori […]

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TED Talk: George Takei: Why I love a country that once betrayed me

July 7, 2014

When he was a child, George Takei and his family were forced into an internment camp for Japanese-Americans, as a “security” measure during World War II. 70 years later, Takei looks back at how the camp shaped his surprising, personal definition of patriotism and democracy. http://www.ted.com/talks/george_takei_why_i_love_a_country_that_once_betrayed_me Recommended for you by Elyse Wyatt

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TED Talk: Bill Gates, Melinda Gates: Why giving away our wealth has been the most satisfying thing we’ve done

June 23, 2014

In 1993, Bill and Melinda Gates took a walk on the beach and made a big decision: to give their Microsoft wealth back to society. In conversation with Chris Anderson, the couple talks about their work at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, as well as their marriage, their children, their failures and the satisfaction […]

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TED Talk: Parul Sehgal: An ode to envy

June 16, 2014

What is jealousy? What drives it, and why do we secretly love it? No study has ever been able to capture its “loneliness, longevity, grim thrill” — that is, says Parul Sehgal, except for fiction. In an eloquent meditation she scours pages from literature to show how jealousy is not so different from a quest […]

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TED Talk: Michel Laberge: How synchronized hammer strikes could generate nuclear fusion

June 9, 2014

Our energy future depends on nuclear fusion, says Michel Laberge. The plasma physicist runs a small company with a big idea for a new type of nuclear reactor that could produce clean, cheap energy. His secret recipe? High speeds, scorching temperatures and crushing pressure. In this hopeful talk, he explains how nuclear fusion might be […]

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TED Talk: Bastian Schaefer: A 3D-printed jumbo jet?

June 2, 2014

Designer Bastian Schaefer shows off a speculative design for the future of jet planes, with a skeleton inspired by strong, flexible, natural forms and by the needs of the world’s, ahem, growing population. Imagine an airplane that’s full of light and space — and built up from generative parts in a 3D printer. http://www.ted.com/talks/bastian_schaefer_a_3d_printed_jumbo_jet Recommended […]

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TED Talk: Mark Ronson: How sampling transformed music

May 26, 2014

Sampling isn’t about “hijacking nostalgia wholesale,” says Mark Ronson. It’s about inserting yourself into the narrative of a song while also pushing that story forward. In this mind-blowingly original talk, watch the DJ scramble 15 TED Talks into an audio-visual omelette, and trace the evolution of “La Di Da Di,” Doug E. Fresh and Slick […]

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Quick Update on the Speakers for TEDxTauranga 2014

May 22, 2014

Oooo I’m so excited! I just had to give you this quick update on our speakers. Firstly, did you know there are 23 in our organising team now? We are all un-paid volunteers and we all have to juggle our day-jobs, family commitments and somehow find the time to work on our list of a thousand […]

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TED Talk: Simon Sinek: How great leaders inspire action

May 19, 2014

Simon Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership all starting with a golden circle and the question “Why?” His examples include Apple, Martin Luther King, and the Wright brothers … (Filmed at TEDxPugetSound.)  http://www.ted.com/talks/simon_sinek_how_great_leaders_inspire_action Recommended for you by Saraniyaa Sukumaar

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TED Talk: Manu Prakash: A 50-cent microscope that folds like origami

May 12, 2014

Perhaps you’ve punched out a paper doll or folded an origami swan? TED Fellow Manu Prakash and his team have created a microscope made of paper that’s just as easy to fold and use. A sparkling demo that shows how this invention could revolutionize healthcare in developing countries … and turn almost anything into a […]

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TED Talk: Michael Norton: How To Buy Happiness

May 5, 2014

At TEDxCambridge, Michael Norton shares fascinating research on how money can, indeed buy happiness — when you don’t spend it on yourself. Listen for surprising data on the many ways pro-social spending can benefit you, your work, and (of course) other people. (Filmed at TEDxCambridge.) http://www.ted.com/talks/michael_norton_how_to_buy_happiness Recommended for you by Ellyn Geismann-Brunskill

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TED Talk: Shawn Achor: The happy secret to better work

April 28, 2014

We believe that we should work to be happy, but could that be backwards? In this fast-moving and entertaining talk, psychologist Shawn Achor argues that actually happiness inspires productivity. (Filmed at TEDxBloomington.) http://www.ted.com/talks/shawn_achor_the_happy_secret_to_better_work Recommended for you by Charlotte Yates

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TED Talk: Amanda Palmer: The art of asking

April 21, 2014

Don’t make people pay for music, says Amanda Palmer: Let them. In a passionate talk that begins in her days as a street performer (drop a dollar in the hat for the Eight-Foot Bride!), she examines the new relationship between artist and fan. https://www.ted.com/talks/amanda_palmer_the_art_of_asking Recommended for you by Ana Lucia Dias Vieira-Gall

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TED Talk: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: The danger of a single story

April 14, 2014

Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice — and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding. https://www.ted.com/talks/chimamanda_adichie_the_danger_of_a_single_story Recommended for you by Ana Lucia Dias Vieira-Gall

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In The News: Looking for inspiring Bay speakers (Bay of Plenty Times)

April 9, 2014

[9 Apr 2014] Bay of Plenty Times: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/bay-of-plenty-times/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503347&objectid=11235243 Preparation for TEDxTauranga on July 19 is well under way, says organiser and marketing coach Sheldon Nesdale. But, despite getting plenty of speaker suggestions from around New Zealand, the organisers are still seeking inspiring speakers who have made Tauranga their home. “We want to hear those untold […]

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TED Talk: Lisa Kristine: Photos that bear witness to modern slavery

April 7, 2014

For the past two years, photographer Lisa Kristine has traveled the world, documenting the unbearably harsh realities of modern-day slavery. She shares hauntingly beautiful images — miners in the Congo, brick layers in Nepal — illuminating the plight of the 27 million souls enslaved worldwide. (Filmed at TEDxMaui) https://www.ted.com/talks/lisa_kristine_glimpses_of_modern_day_slavery Recommended for you by Sachiko Kodaira […]

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Tickets Will Go On Sale 12noon Monday 12 May 2014

April 2, 2014

Sales of “early-bird” tickets finished today. You will not be able to purchase tickets until 12noon Monday 12 May 2014. If you’re receiving this message via email, stay subscribed and I’ll email you when tickets go live. Until then, you can help in 2 ways: 1. Spread The Word: Who else can you introduce to […]

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TED Talk: Edward Snowden: Here’s how we take back the Internet

March 31, 2014

Appearing by telepresence robot, Edward Snowden speaks at TED2014 about surveillance and Internet freedom. The right to data privacy, he suggests, is not a partisan issue, but requires a fundamental rethink of the role of the internet in our lives — and the laws that protect it. “Your rights matter,” he says, “because you never […]

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TED Talk: Amy Cuddy: Your body language shapes who you are

March 24, 2014

Body language affects how others see us, but it may also change how we see ourselves. Social psychologist Amy Cuddy shows how “power posing” — standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident — can affect testosterone and cortisol levels in the brain, and might even have an impact on our […]

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TED Talk: Yann Dall’Aglio: Love — you’re doing it wrong

March 17, 2014

In this delightful talk, philosopher Yann Dall’Aglio explores the universal search for tenderness and connection in a world that’s ever more focused on the individual. As it turns out, it’s easier than you think. A wise and witty reflection on the state of love in the modern age. (Filmed at TEDxParis.) http://www.ted.com/talks/yann_dall_aglio_love_you_re_doing_it_wrong Recommended for you […]

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TED Talk: Aparna Rao: Art that craves your attention

March 3, 2014

In this charming talk, artist Aparna Rao shows us her latest work: cool, cartoony sculptures (with neat robotic tricks underneath them) that play with your perception — and crave your attention. Take a few minutes to simply be delighted. http://www.ted.com/talks/aparna_rao_art_that_craves_your_attention Recommended for you by Sheldon  Nesdale

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TED Talk: McKenna Pope: Want to be an activist? Start with your toys

February 24, 2014

McKenna Pope’s younger brother loved to cook, but he worried about using an Easy-Bake Oven — because it was a toy for girls. So at age 13, Pope started an online petition for the American toy company Hasbro to change the pink-and-purple color scheme on the classic toy and incorporate boys into its TV marketing. […]

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TED Talk: Anant Agarwal: Why massive open online courses (still) matter

February 17, 2014

2013 was a year of hype for MOOCs (massive open online courses). Great big numbers and great big hopes were followed by some disappointing first results. But the head of edX, Anant Agarwal, makes the case that MOOCs still matter — as a way to share high-level learning widely and supplement (but perhaps not replace) […]

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Who Should Speak At TEDxTauranga This Year?

February 5, 2014

You’ve watched a few TED videos now so you know what it takes, right? Who do you know that we should get up on stage for this years TEDxTauranga? They might live in Tauranga, or elsewhere in New Zealand, or even overseas. The first step is for my team to meet with them in person […]

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TED Talk: Steve Jurvetson: Model rocketry

November 11, 2013

I just came across this old (Mar 2007) TED talk by the “scary-smart” Steve Jurvetson. It’s amazing how much wow-factor he got across in just 3 minutes: Watch the video on TED.com

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Good News: Just got our official TEDxTauranga 2014 licence from TED.com! Yay!

October 23, 2013
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Audience Member Reactions to TEDxTauranga 2013

August 9, 2013

Here’s a collection of feedback about TEDxTauranga which was held on Tuesday 30 July 2013 (if you’ve got something to add, do so in the comments section below): “Participating in the first TEDx Tauranga was an honour. Being an avid online TED talk watcher, it had never occurred to me that I might have something […]

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All 6 Videos from TEDxTauranga 2013

August 9, 2013

Did you miss out on TEDxTauranga, 30 July 2013? Did you attend, but want to relive the evening? Then I have great news for you because here are the videos of each of the 6 speakers on the night: (See this playlist on YouTube) Speaker #1: Dean Parchomchuk & Charlotte Yates: “Tokelau, Bringing Solar Power […]

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TEDxTauranga 2013: How last night went

July 31, 2013

Just a quick note to let you know how it went last night. I was the emcee for the event and I started the night with 5 promises (and at the end of the night I checked with the audience if I had kept them): You will hear new ideas [achieved!] You will meet new […]

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Speakers Announced For TEDxTauranga 2013

July 23, 2013

For TEDxTauranga, 30 July 2013 we will have 4 live speakers and 2 pre-recorded TED talks. 1. Dean Parchomchuk & Charlotte Yates You’ll hear their amazing story of how they changed the lives of the people on a small tropical island of Tokelau by replacing their crippling dependency on diesel generated electricity with solar power. 2. Peter […]

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TEDxTauranga, 30 July 2013 is SOLD OUT!

July 21, 2013

That’s right, tickets to TEDxTauranga 30 July 2013 have SOLD OUT! Did you get a ticket? If so, my team and I look forward to meeting you in 9 days time! Did you miss out on a ticket? I’m so sorry! You can follow our Twitter for live reports during the event 6pm – 9.30pm Tue 30 […]

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Progress Update: Wed 16 July 2013

July 16, 2013

Just 2 weeks until TEDxTauranga! It’s going to be awesome! Good news, we’ve made room in our schedule for a 4th live speaker! So the evening will be made up of 4 live speakers + 2 pre-recorded talks plus 3 sessions for mixing and mingling with other Tedsters like you that love hearing ideas worth […]

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Weekly TED Talk: Ron Finley: A guerilla gardener in South Central LA

July 8, 2013

Suggested by Kimberley Cleland

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Progress Update: Wed 3 July 2013

July 3, 2013

Less than 4 weeks until TEDxTauranga and we are so pumped and excited! Just last night, half of the TEDxTauranga organising team met with half of our potential speakers. It was fantastic hearing their amazing stories face-to-face. We’d love you to hear them all but we have the difficult task of choosing just 3 speakers […]

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Weekly TED Talk: Joe Smith: How to use a paper towel

June 24, 2013

Suggested by Tina Jennen

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Progress Update: Mon 24 June 2013

June 24, 2013

Wow, things are going to move quickly now! Licence?: Yes! We have our official TEDx licence. Date?: Yes! We have the date: Tuesday 30 July 2013, 7pm – 9.30pm (drinks and nibbles from 6pm). Team?: Yes! We have the team: 14 of us meeting every Tuesday morning Speakers?: We have a list of 40 potential […]

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