TEDx brings pursuit of knowledge to Victoria

Local News

On Saturday, Nov. 22, the fourth annual TEDxVictoria will take place at the McPherson Playhouse. Adapted from the large-scale TED conference, the independent TEDx program was designed to allow communities to independently organize their own TED-style conferences in the hopes of sharing ideas at a local level.

According to its creative director, Dylan Wilks, the show attracts “everyone from high school students to octogenarians, every conceivable background and career,” and it is once again expected to sell out. 

TEDx Victoria is organized by a team of dedicated volunteers whose stated goal is “to inspire action and promote connection through the sharing of ideas.” Most of the speakers at this year’s conference are Victoria locals, several of whom work and study at UVic. The lineup includes researchers, students, performers, creators, advocates, and more, all addressing this year’s theme, “The Pursuit of Knowledge.”

Ticket prices start at $89, but Wilks explains that the price is necessary to distribute the talks online for free. In addition, Wilks continues, “everyone who works on TEDxVictoria, including myself, is a volunteer—we do this because we are passionate about spreading ideas and building community.”

Despite this voluntary workforce, the funds raised from ticket sales only cover two-thirds of the expenses, which include marketing, venue rentals, post-production costs, and more. Sponsors cover the remaining third.

Wilks remembers “what it is like to be a starving student on loans,” so TEDxVictoria will offer a limited number of discounted tickets to those with demonstrated need. For an even more cost-effective option, TEDxVictoria plan to distribute a free simulcast of the talk online, but details have not yet been finalized. Like the larger TED conference, many of the talks will appear online two to three weeks after the live event.

Students who want to become engaged in the TEDx community can attend other TEDxVictoria events, such as Salons, which allows attendees to network and watch curated selection of talks, and Live Simulcasts, including one of TEDGlobal 2014 in Rio de Janeiro on Oct. 8. Details can be found on TEDxVictoria’s website or Facebook page.

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