Digital + Culture = Creative Economy

Culture Shift Johannesburg – Result!

Over the past 2 ½ days, 50 developers, designers, and cultural & creative people came together at the Hub Johannesburg to build digital tools to challenges presented by cultural and creative professionals. There were highs, lows, and challenges for all six teams who were trying to do the nigh-impossible in just 48 hours.

Here’s what they built.

The Winners: QRiocity

The QRiocity team wanted to understand, explore, and share all the fascinating stories of South Africa. They hit on gathering data about areas in Johannesburg and putting that factual information curated into QR codes & SMS short codes on buildings, statues, and locations – a bit like English Heritage’s Blue Plaques. They then wanted to crowdsource personal stories around those stories – so if you read the QR code you are taken to a place where you can share an individual experience of that place.

The runners-up: Indabo

Indabo is a combination of the Zulu for “event” and “venue”. The Indabo team is building a platform to allow church halls, community centres, and sport fields to manage their venue spaces online, as well as to make that space available, with a revenue share between venues and the Indabo team.

Culture Club

Culture Club brings points-based real-time gaming to finding cultural events; they seek to curate unusual, underground, and interesting events around Johannesburg, and then get individuals to use their mobile app (Blackberry, the major platform in South Africa) to check in at events – further points come from rating, blogging, or reviewing events.


Prescholar builds a range of “preschool in a box” tools – noting that individuals who attend preschool do much better throughout their life, Pre-ScholaR tries to bring an inventive, creative toolkit to mothers and primary caretakers of children aged 3-6 to prepare Early Years children for literacy and creative expression.


Arts-In uses a digital platform to find business mentors and match them up with young, up-and-coming, and emerging artists. Through an online skills-sharing platform and regular networking and mentorship events, the Arts-IN team hopes to bring opportunities and business savvy to emerging artists.

Family Match

Family Match matches families from diverse cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds to promote cultural understanding. Modeled on a programme put in place in reunified Germany, Family Match attempts to bridge the cultural divide within one of the most diverse countries in the world.

Congratulations to all six teams – a lot of hard work went into this weekend (not to mention a fair amount of wine, beer, cider, and food) and the teams did some stellar work. We’re off to sleep now.


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