David Tuganov, Director, Neirostorm

British Council presents: Meet the Delegates – Part 2

Ahead of the BEYOND conference 2023, we asked a few of the international delegates from Wider Europe to share their backgrounds and experiences and tell us what they hope to gain from attending the conference.





Elene Toidze – GEORGIA

Director/Chief Project Officer, Georgian Creative Clusters Alliance/EU funded Creative Compass project to support CCIs in Georgia

Tell us about yourself and your work

With a decade in the creative industries, I’ve led policy planning and implementation in Georgia, from contributing to the first cultural policy document at the Ministry of Culture to heading the Creative Industries division at Creative Georgia. In my efforts to transform Creative Georgia into a leading model for sectoral public agency, I’ve worked on improving public engagement, fostering cross-sectoral collaboration, and promoting transparency in decision-making.

For around 8 years I’ve focused on establishing a foundational model for research in Georgia’s creative industries, resulting in the inaugural baseline study. This document incorporates statistical analysis and qualitative evaluation providing insights into the current state of the sector.

With an MA in Public Policy, my expertise spans consultancy, research, and training, where I advise and train organisations to strengthen their strategic competencies.


What opportunities do you see for collaboration between Georgia and the UK?

The collaboration between Georgia and the United Kingdom in creative industries holds vast potential across various dimensions. Georgia, which is culturally diverse and has very rich creative resources, deems the development of creative industries crucial for sustainable growth and internationalisation. Recently, Georgia has developed a Creative Economy strategy, offering a diverse toolset for public, private, and international organisations to support the creative industries.

In the past, Creative Georgia, representing the public sector, led efforts to set trends for the development of Creative Industries (CI) by initiating various programs. Now, there is a notable shift with the CI sector taking initiative and actively working to establish sectoral Civil Society Organizations (CSOs). These CSOs aim to map sector needs and spearhead sectoral advocacy. This shift has, to some extent, resulted from collaborative efforts between Creative Georgia and the British Council focused on strengthening intersectoral collaboration and networking.

Building on this, I consider that it is both timely and necessary to engage in collaborative initiatives supporting CSOs in creative industries.


What about the UK creative industries interests you the most?

The United Kingdom’s position as a global leader in creative industries has been a continual source of inspiration throughout my career. My focus has consistently involved learning from the UK’s rich experience in various aspects of the creative industries. Specifically, I am keenly interested in understanding the UK’s approaches to studying the creative economy, particularly in measuring the sector’s contributions that go beyond direct financial benefits.

Moreover, I am eager to delve into the UK’s experiences in developing and supporting creative hubs and clusters. Gaining insights into successful strategies and initiatives will provide valuable knowledge to inform and enhance my efforts to support creative industries in Georgia.


What is most appealing to you about attending the BEYOND conference?

I am excited to be having a chance to attend the BEYOND 2023 conference, as it offers a compelling and thought-provoking programme focused on the global creative economy. This amazing event brings together world-leading researchers, thinkers and practitioners from the sector. The prospect of listening to and learning from planned talks and presentations and using networking opportunities aligns with my commitment to stay informed on innovative strategies and initiatives in the creative industries. I am excited to gain valuable insights, industry expertise, and explore opportunities for collaboration.


Director, Neirostorm

Tell us about yourself and your work

I am an expert in digital business transformation, change management, and innovation management and I co-founded several non-profit organizations. I implement human-centric technologies in government, business, and society. I am also a mentor and coach at the Academy of Public Administration, a business coach for startup acceleration programs, and the founder of the social innovation laboratory, TransforNation.


What opportunities do you see for collaboration between Kazakhstan and the UK?

Innovations and social projects – As the country is actively involved in developing and implementing social innovation projects, there are opportunities for knowledge exchange and collaborative work with British non-profit organizations and research centres, particularly in areas like STEAM, design thinking, and youth entrepreneurship programs.

Cultural and creative collaboration – With a focus on promoting culture through music and creative platforms, there is potential for collaboration with British cultural and creative industries. This could involve joint musical projects, cultural exchanges, investor opportunities, and collaboration in the development of creative industries and digital arts.
What about the UK creative industries and the BEYOND conference interest you the most?

I am most interested in the UK’s music, digital arts, the fusion of technology and arts and innovations in arts. I’d also like to learn more about the use of STEAM and EdTech for creators.
I’m keen to attend the conference for the networking opportunities and potential collaborations and to meet potential partners and investors.



Executive Director of IT cluster, National University of Water and Environmental Engineering Rvne. Director, Rivne College of Information Technologies

Tell us about yourself and your work

I have 20 years of teaching experience at university level, specializing in applied mathematics and computer science. Eight years ago, I began developing informal education at the National University of Water and Environmental Engineering, implementing project-based learning following the STEAM methods. Later, I took the helm of the Noosphere Engineering School at the university. Since 2016, I have represented the university in the IT cluster formed by the major IT companies in Rivne. Since the start of the war in March 2022, I have served as the Executive Director of the IT cluster. Additionally, I currently lead the Rivne College of Information Technologies.

Together with the cluster and House of Europe, we organized the annual Creative Industries Festival. This year, with the support of USAID, we hosted two significant events: the Digital Wear hackathon, where students from three regions of Ukraine proposed their vision at the intersection of the automotive and IT industries, and a large conference called Game City, where we showcased our city as a hub for creative industries.

My primary mission goes beyond the physical renovation of the college buildings. We have developed projects and initiatives that aim to shift the typical paradigms of education, transforming our college into a creative educational hub where different generations can learn and create together. I believe this is essential for the development of our society and our city’s economy.


What opportunities do you see for collaboration between Ukraine and the UK?

  • In my professional experience, I see these areas as potential opportunities for collaboration:
  • Educational exchange programs – Facilitating student and faculty exchange programs between Ukrainian and UK universities and colleges to foster cultural exchange and knowledge transfer.
  • Startups and innovation – Exploring partnerships between Ukrainian and UK startups to exchange ideas, technologies, and best practices.
  • Creative industries and cultural exchange – Fostering collaborations between Ukrainian and UK creative industries, promoting joint projects, exhibitions, and cultural events.
  • Technology and IT – Strengthening ties between IT clusters in Ukraine and the UK, encouraging collaboration on tech projects, knowledge-sharing, and workforce development.


What about the UK creative industries and the BEYOND conference interest you the most?

The areas that interest me the most are: interactive and digital arts, creative education initiatives, cultural events and festivals, heritage and museums collaboration, gaming and interactive entertainment, creative entrepreneurship programs, environmental and sustainable design, cross-disciplinary collaborations

I’m excited to attend the conference because London is the capital of creative industries! Attending is the best way to stay informed about modern trends and research in creative industries and to make new connections.


With thanks to British Council

This article was first published by our partners the British Council. and has been reproduced with their permission. View the original post here.