Learning from other creative industries (III): typology of learning
This is the third of a mini-series of posts about the business of interdisciplinary learning amongst creative industries.
In last week’s post my previous post in this series I gave a concrete example of interdisciplinary learning, using the occasion of attending a talk by Jeremy Tankard as a mini-case study. Here I wish to vary the focus by trying to capture interdisciplinary learning through generalisations rather than specifics.
When I reflect on how, as a publisher, I have learnt from other creatives, I find there have been five types of learning. They are as follows.
1. Inspiration. One sees someone doing something good in one industry and thinks, “I’d like to do the equivalent in mine”. (For an example, see my post on the analogy between micropublishers and microbreweries.)
2. Questioning. One sees an industry doing something different from one’s own industry and thinks, “Could we do it that way?”. For example, books take months to produce, yet magazines come out weekly or monthly. How does that happen?
3. Revelation. Trends in design, fashion,cuisine etc. reveal – through embodiment – what is happening in society at large.
4. Workflow design. For example, one can seek to transfer elements of software development processes to book publishing (a point explored in a previous post on designing workflow).
5. Business design. One can think of the design of a business – for example, in the book industry the design of a supply chain or of a publishing list – the way creatives think of designing a product.