On The Edge is a podcast all about making unexpected connections. It features conversations with people who are living and working on the boundaries of organisations and places, and who see the world a little differently. Hosted by compulsive connector Roland Harwood from Liminal.
#023 Steve Xoh - The Art of Not Knowing
In this episode I had great conversation with Steve Xoh (pronounced Steve Zore - and also known as Steve Chapman) who is an artist, writer and speaker interested in creativity and the human condition. He has spoken around the world on the subject of human creativity and culture and has exhibited his artwork alongside the likes of Pablo Picasso and David Shrigley. He is visiting faculty member on a number of culture change Master’s programmes and he says he is at his best when he isn’t quite sure of what he is doing.
I first met Steve for the first time about a year ago at an event called Basecamp, in something called the Tent of Not Knowing which we discuss in this episode. Since then I’ve enjoyed following his work, including watching his very popular TEDx talk about confronting his inner critic. And we began our conversation taking about a podcast series he recently completed called Sound of Silence which is an exhibition of collected silence recorded face to face with 100 guests over a 2 year period.
I really enjoyed that and was struck by what he said about:
The intention of art being to create moments of doubt in the realities that we’ve come to believe
The moment we start to believe something as concrete, we loose the ability to wonder
I make, to work out what I’m making, once I’ve made it = learning by doing
I hope you enjoyed listening too and if you want to find out more about Steve then check out the links below:
Dracula Interview Image: https://www.instagram.com/p/CH4_3eGMSzF/
Podcast: www.soundofsilence.org.uk Gallery: www.spongleheim.com
TEDx Talk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lnf-Ka3ZmOM
Steve's Profile Picture Credit: Steve Marshall.
This podcast was brought to you by Liminal - a collective intelligence community that seeks to solve hard problems that fall between the cracks of existing organisations, places and institutions. To find out more about Liminal or to join our community, please visit
Thanks for listening.
#022 Imran Khan - Humanising Science
In this episode I had great conversation with Imran Khan who is Head of Public Engagement for the Wellcome Trust who is an independent global charitable foundation, the 4th largest charitable foundation in the world, that supports science to solve the urgent health challenges of mental health, global heating and infectious diseases.
Imran leads Wellcome’s efforts in helping the public trust, use, and inform health research. In previous roles he was Chief Executive of the British Science Association, and a science journalist and as a political researcher. His other roles include serving as a trustee of Nesta, the UK’s social innovation foundation.
I have learned a lot from worked with Wellcome and Imran and his team a few times over the last few years and have been impressed by the breath, depth and scope of the work they support. And it feels like that in the midst of the covid pandemic and with global heating top of almost everyone’s agenda, it feels like an important time to consider the role of science in our changing world.
#021 Deepa Prahalad - Inclusive Innovation
In this episode I had a really insightful conversation with Deep Prahalad who is a author, speaker and activist about all things to do with Inclusive Innovation.
She is author of Predictable Magic which was one of Fast Companies best design books of the year, as well as being a frequent contributor to Harvard Business Review, strategy+business, Businessweek. She is on the Advisory Boards of the Global Peter Drucker Forum, ArogyaWorld and ModRoof, an innovative, sustainable roofing company in India and actively supports several global efforts in memory of her late father, Dr. CK Prahald, the famous Professor of Corporate Strategy at The University of Michigan and co-author of "The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid".
Now based in San Diego, Deepa recently gave a really inspiring talk at the launch of a new programme that we at Liminal are currently facilitating called Scaling Out for Impact 2020 which consists of over 40 Pioneering Companies from 2 Innovative Countries - UK and SA - facing 3 Urgent Challenges over 6 Immersive Weeks to create 1 Global Community of businesses interesting in combining both social impact with commercial impact.
So I knew I wanted to find out more, so I started out by asking her what is inclusive innovation and why does it matter. Enjoy.
Thanks again for listening. Until next time, please keep on connecting people and ideas - if you do you never know what might happen.
#020 Rohan Gunatillake - This is Happening
In this episode I enjoyed reconnecting with Rohan Gunatillake who is a digital innovator and entrepreneur in the field of health, wellbeing and mindfulness.
He is creator of the best-selling app Buddhify, author of the book Modern Mindfulness, and host of the surprisingly good Meditative Story podcast. In addition he also works with the National Health Service in Scotland making digital technology for clinicians, care workers and citizens.
Based in Glasgow, Rohan and I first met over a decade ago at the UK Innovation Foundation Nesta, where we worked together on harnessing social media for social impact. And more than most people I know, he really strives to live in the present moment and focus on what is really happening right now. I really like the way he effortlessly switches between everything from parkour, to cooking, to digital technologies, to practical mindfulness, leading to deeper insights about life, the universe and everything, all in one conversation.
In particular I loved what he said about seeing a coil of rope instead of a snake, so that the impossible becomes possible. And I also really liked the bit towards the end about building thresholds, and that which connects us also divides us.
Anyway I hope you enjoyed it too and if you want to find out more about Rohan and some of the things we talked about then please visit:
To find out more about Liminal or to join our community, please visit https://www.weareliminal.co/
#019 Babusi Nyoni - From Dance to Diagnosis
In this episode I really enjoyed speaking with Babusi Nyoni who is a self taught design-strategist and innovator.
He works in the fields of Artificial Intelligence and big data innovation with a particular focus on developing solutions for Sub-Saharan African communities.
He was born in Zimbabwe and grew up there before moving to South Africa and worked for a decade in the advertising, finance and technology industries, before relocating to the Netherlands a few years ago where he now specialises in developing meaningful innovation by translating technology from one domain to another.
So I started out by asking him how he came up with a new innovation that went from dance to diagnosis? Enjoy.
Patana AI App Store https://apps.apple.com/us/app/patana-ai/id1500814498
Patana AI Google Play Store https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.silahealth.patana&hl=en_US
#018 Douglas Rushkoff - Find The Others
In this episode I enjoyed a wide ranging conversation with Douglas Rushkoff, who is an author, academic and documentarian who studies human autonomy in a digital age, and said to be one of the “world’s ten most influential intellectuals” by MIT. He is also host of the Team Human podcast and author of the bestselling book Team Human, and many other books on media, technology, and culture.
In this conversation we talked about the need to make choices that build a future that bridges the inherently polarizing nature of our connected world. We also talked about more distributed ways of organising to be effective, and the fact that we are on the edge of nothing less than the end of civilisation right now and what we do about it.
So I started out by asking him. why, on the back of his Team Human book, there are only three words, namely Find The Others?
If you want to find out more about Douglas and some of the things we talked about then please visit https://rushkoff.com/
This podcast was brought to you by Liminal - a collective intelligence community to address complex and collaborative challenges of our connected world. To find out more or to join the community, please visit www.weareliminal.co.
#others #human #teamhuman #rushkoff #conspire #rapport #digital #collectiveintelligence #ontheedge #weareliminal