Technologies have already reached almost every sphere of our lives, and its proper use simplifies and transforms them for the better. Thanks to their connection with creativity, the metropolis of East Slovakia becomes a place for a worthwhile life. The cooperation of these two – at first glance quite different – sectors contributes to the development of the city in which it is nice to live, work and study. Find out below why Creative Industry Košice (CIKE) is a member of Košice IT Valley: the result of this collaboration are projects that convinced the talented young Slovaks to stay not only at home but even in the East for further innovation.
Košice IT is one of the best-developed sectors of the city today. The CEO and Statutory Representative of Košice IT Valley, Pavol Miroššay (or just Pali), recalls that work in the IT sector was once considered less attractive. This area began to develop in parallel with the idea of the European Capital of Culture 2013. The culture created the necessary counterbalance to IT and thanks to it Košice could become a promising place for the life of both – specialists and creative people. CIKE sees great potential in their interconnection because cooperation can produce innovations which are beneficial not only for companies but also for the general public. Such interconnection of CIKE has led to several successful cooperations.
Even seemingly big problems can be solved by non-traditional solutions. Art and creativity, an unrecognized view of a problem or an extremely interesting topic can attract creative energy to those places that will benefit artists, companies and also society.
IT + Creativity = Innovations
This is how the Creativity for Business program for companies and institutions in Košice was founded in 2011, whose processes and their leaders are open to innovation. Artists, scientists, students, sociologists or experts in artificial intelligence can be the ones who raise their profile by a business. In this way, we build a background for our talents and prevent them from going abroad. Because only fresh human resources can make Košice and the east of Slovakia a better and more popular place to live.
We can only bring similar innovations if we master tech and think differently, creatively. The result can be better healthcare, gastronomy, metallurgy, or transport services. By engaging creativity, we can also innovate coexistence or empathy in society. For example, Boris Vaitovič, a media artist, has created a unique hospital rehabilitation tool that allows patients to tolerate treatment more positively. Innovation does not always have to be merely material. It is often about improving the quality of life that people perceive through their sense.
How we connected Košice IT Valley with Adam Rybák
In response to the need for IT Valley re-branding, cooperation with Adam Rybák was established. On the occasion of their 10th birthday, they decided to innovate their own brand, support talented people and publicly present the talent and potential we have here. Adam has been led by an experienced mentor Martin Jerkovič for six months, joining companies, region, students and innovation in the form of exponential curves in a new logo. He says that something has been there before and thanks to IT Valley it can grow.
Adam then travelled to Erasmus + in Vienna, where he worked on application development. After Erasmus, he was offered to work for this company in Vienna, which he rejected. When asked why Adam says, “It would be a decent job, but it would cost me the community I have in Košice.” He further says he decided to take the chance he got at home, working on local projects that he enjoys a lot more. He says that he has noticed a greater amount of young people in Košice who stay here after school because the IT sector is at a good level and has all the prerequisites to make it even better.
Today, Pali says that as an association they got a new look, but it certainly was a great school of life for Adam. He got new contacts, tried out professional networking and attended the Web Summit in Portugal, which they gave him as a reward. According to Pali, the greatest advantage of the program is the fact that the artist is not business-oriented. Therefore, he can bring fresh ideas to the company and at the same time, he will learn to work more professionally with the business client. “If we were any other company and produced other products, it would be even better because the creative person would make our marketing campaign quite differently. Nevertheless, we got a completely different view in our association and caught a new wind in the sails,” concludes Pali.
In addition to rejecting a job offer in Vienna, he decided not to continue his studies at university but to take a year off and work as a freelancer. Today, Adam does not regret this decision and says himself that during the Creativity for Business he gained many contacts that brought him new job opportunities. After a year of freelancing, he moved to a higher level and began working as a product designer at Vacuumlabs, a Slovak developer, with seven subsidiaries in Europe and more than 50 clients worldwide.
Art & Tech Days to give people another reason to stay here
CIKE’s cooperation with IT Valley didn’t end with one successful exchange. For IT specialists, creators and curious people, we organize a six-day Art & Tech Days media festival, where foreign speakers not only point out good practice of linking art and technology but also present the latest technologies to the general public in an understandable way. Among all its formats, the international Art & Tech Conference, which will focus on language and communication and the challenges they present to art, the creative industry and business, and what they mean to us in our everyday lives, is the dominant event of all coming up this November.
Watch a video from last year and join us in November.