Neville Vincent Scarfe, the first Dean of Education of the University of British Columbia, considered “play” to be essentially “the highest form of research.”

At Tanween, Ithra’s annual creativity season, the concept of PLAY aims to unlock innovation and creativity in audiences by engaging people in creative research across the fields of science, art, architecture, design, technology, and culture. Across four main tracks - Play Process, Play Products, Emergent Play and Play Spaces, the importance of PLAY is redefined and reexamined as a key component to discover and achieve.

PLAY to think, to process, to discover, to explore, and to learn

To echo Albert Einstein’s theory that “combinatory or associative play seems to be the essential feature in productive thought,” Tanween offers its visitors activities tailored to provoke their creative thinking and tackle Saudi and global topics. Experience and innovation go hand-in-hand to deliver on the creative promise.

Innovation on a general scale is often viewed as some form of accomplishment. At Tanween, innovation is explored as a daily possibility, as the ability to change, enhance our processes and create at work or across our everyday lives. How will we accomplish this exploration at Tanween 2019? Through the following:

Ready to Play? will offer participants an open discussion on how essential play is in revealing diversity of perspectives when dealing with complicated situations. Panelists will focus on how play can stimulate imagination in children and awaken it in adults.

At the Play Process track, participants will hear expert testimonies on how being playful can be a vital tool in our everyday lives.

The Bio Lab exhibit, participants will discover new bio-based materials and technologies from a group of scientists from the Netherlands and Saudi Arabia.

Tanween offers visitors the platform to explore how employing play into their life can change how they do things and how they live their life.

At the Creative Intelligence workshop, participants will learn how to employ play in addressing the ever-accelerating pace of artificial intelligence’s use in today’s world.

And at the Emergent Play track, speakers will highlight scientific studies in demonstrating how emergent play as a concept has the power to create unexpected outcomes in addressing the increasing need for contemporary solutions to a world where digital systems are becoming more autonomous.

PLAY to design

Tanween strives to give established and aspiring designers a playful platform to employ their creativity in becoming catalysts for sustainable behavior in the design world. The outcome: they will PLAY to innovate and to create sustainable change.

The Sustainable Design workshop aims to equip designers with play methods, styles, and mechanisms to create more environmentally-friendly designs using natural materials. At this workshop, participants will explore how design can affect the continuity of life and that designers bear the responsibility of providing design products capable of withstanding the test of time while preserving the environment they emerge from.

At the Playground Design workshop, designers will be challenged to repurpose an existing playground and redesign it into a new accessible playground for kids ages 2-12 years old.

Tanween 2019 offers place for game designers. At the Serious Game Design workshop, participants will learn how to inject their creativity in gaming design by drawing on past experiences.

PLAY to heal

Contemporary American psychiatrist, Dr. Stewart Brown stipulated that “Those who play rarely become brittle in the face of stress or lose the healing capacity for humor.” Innovation can be utilized to create change in quality experiences.

Tanween’s Improve the Child’s Experience of Hospital will challenge participants to employ play in designing tangible healthcare solutions to improve hospital quality and enhance kids' experience.

This challenge is designed to envision a healthcare experience for those who are the most playful and most vulnerable among us; children!

PLAY in the face of adversity

At thePublic Play Practices: Tactics of Resistance challenge, participants will explore the concept of PLAY as a new research method to explore and map out public spaces and communities and to resolve conflicts and enhance, alter or transform their communities for the better. 

At Tanween 2019, you will discover how the power of PLAY can lead to the power to innovate across any field and for a multitude of purposes. These key elements are essential as we explore how to extend possibilities, foster healthier team spirit, and offer fresh perspectives to problem-solving. 

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