Blog Post

Guests and Collaboratory team 2020-2022

We’re thrilled to welcome you to the first season of Collaboratory, a podcast that will explore what creating things together can look like in practice, and how we can put things in place to help us do it well, and enjoy the process along the way.

What can you expect from listening to Collaboratory?

Across Season 1 of Collaboratory you’ll hear what co-creativity can look and feel like, and how it can be similar and different across sectors, scales and contexts. You’ll hear from practitioners working in very different settings and disciplines as they talk about why creating enabling environments for co-creativity is so important and what that can entail in different contexts. We’ll talk about the skills and capabilities practitioners really need to do this work well, and how you might learn and practice them. Over the coming months we’ll be exploring all of this and more and we hope you get out of it something that is helpful for both your work and your life more broadly!

Our intention is to make visible often invisible or tacit knowledge about creating things together. By doing so, we hope that we can more easily have important conversations earlier on (and regularly) through a co-creative process which can help smooth the path with its inevitable ups and downs and roundabouts. We hope that Collaboratory will shine a light on important issues to reflect on –  personally and with the people you’re working with – and that you’ll get inspiration from others like (or unlike!) you who have walked these paths before and have learned useful lessons along the way. Importantly, we hope to create a space where people who practice co-creativity already or are curious about integrating it into their work can come together to learn and reflect, and ultimately co-create more intentionally, effectively and enjoyably.

Where has Collaboratory come from?

Dr Maya Haviland first seeded the idea of this podcast as part of her broader research project through the Australian National University, called the ‘Scaffolding Cultural Co-Creativity Project’ (SCCCP), seeing it as a public facing, practical learning tool for practitioners (established and emerging) who facilitate or are involved in co-creative processes. She then connected with long-time friend and colleague Nicole Deen to float the idea of making the podcast together and the ideas started to flow in earnest in late 2020.

Over the past two years, we have mapped out the various elements of co-creative practice we believe to be critical to “success”, drawing on insights from the SCCCP and our own practices. We then set about interviewing guests from a wide range of sectors, roles and scales of practice, from academia, arts and cultural organisations, community development, public sector and consultants specialising in convening co-creative processes with a range of stakeholders. So far, we’ve interviewed more than 30 people from across Australia and the globe, whose experiences span youth development and entrepreneurship, music and arts, politics, service and product design, international development, climate change and disaster resilience, communication and leadership and so much more. We have learnt a huge amount from their reflections on how they’ve facilitated and participated in co-creative processes, and are excited to share some of these insights and our learnings from the conversations with you in Season 1 of Collaboratory.

What will Collaboratory episodes look and sound like?

From the huge breadth and depth of experiences and knowledge we gained in our guest interviews, we’ve crafted podcast episodes based around a key theme or question of interest. In these episodes, you’ll hear from a few guests each time sharing their take on the topic, based on the experiences they’ve had and the reflective practice they’ve used to navigate often tricky co-creative situations. While we don’t intend to cover all perspectives in each episode, our hope is that the discussion sparks some new ideas and reflection for your practice, and can help you to share about different elements of co-creativity with those you need support from in your work.

Because so many of our guests have rich stories to share from their practice, we’ve also created a Collaboratory Conversations series, where we share an edited version of the interview we conducted with them. These conversations will go more into depth about a particular project or topic that will give you more detailed clues on how you might approach something similar in your own world. We’ve found that talking to guests who have no apparent connection with our particular work (like the idea of human-computer co-creativity or role-playing games) still have so many gems of wisdom we can relate to on different levels. We hope you find the same seemingly unrelated but exciting connections!

Who is behind Collaboratory?

The “we” of Collaboratory includes a few key people, and many more who’ve helped us along the way to make it a reality. Collaboratory is produced and hosted by Maya Haviland and Nicole Deen, and you can read more about us here.

Maya enlisted the sound production genius of Nick McCorriston to make everything sound amazing, and we’ve relied on the administrative and marketing prowess of team member Nicky O’Dowd and intern Yichen Li to help us take it from concept to reality. Of course, we couldn’t have done anything without the generosity of our guests who shared so much wisdom and learning with us. There are many others who’ve had an important part to play in the last two years, and we are eternally grateful for all your support, guidance and technical know-how.

Finally, we acknowledge and thank the funding provided by the Australian National University Translational Fellowship Scheme for the SCCCP, which has been instrumental in supporting the research and production of this podcast.

How can you get involved (if you want to)?

Since this podcast is all about sharing practice and learning with people like you, we’d love to hear from you as you start listening to the podcast and reading our blog. If you have a reflection on a topic, a burning question you’d like us to cover, or if you’d like to be a guest on the podcast in future please email us at

You can also connect with us on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn and of course, we’d love for you to subscribe, share with your friends, family and colleagues and leave us a review on your pod player of choice.