Where is Here: Mapping and growing the knowledge economy

The Comox Valley Art Gallery hosts a symposium in downtown Courtenay July 20-22.

The Comox Valley Art Gallery team is eager to host a symposium on cultural mapping

The Comox Valley Art Gallery team is eager to host a symposium on cultural mapping

by Hans Peter Meyer, team lead for #WeareYQQ

Where is Here is a cultural mapping project. It’s also the name of a symposium that the Comox Valley Art Gallery is hosting in downtown Courtenay July 20-22.

The #WeAreYQQ / LIFT Project just came on as a sponsor. Why are we interested in “cultural mapping?” Because I see a good fit.  Where is Here is doing an inventory of our talent resources. We’re interested in leading, inspiring, and fueling Comox Valley talent to think bigger, to act collaboratively, to grow our economy.

CVAG’s Sharon Karsten says cultural mapping is a key piece in the larger community economic development puzzle.

“One of the first questions you have to ask is, What do we have to work with? What kinds of people do we have? What are their talents? How can we leverage these to grow a bigger knowledge or creative economy?”

Several years ago Qualicum Beach did a similar project. The Town faced similar economic challenges to the Comox Valley – including a dependence on the 3Rs of retirement, retail, and recreation. The QB inventory led to a number of initiatives. Some are now fueling growth in the Town’s knowledge sector economy. I can see the same thing happening here.

Karsten says mapping is a way to get the ball rolling.

“Maps are notorious for how they connect people. Where is Here is going to bring people out of the woodwork. It’s going to help them connect and build on each others’ strengths.”

The symposium becomes a focal point for this work. It’s an opportunity for our community to learn more about how cultural mapping can benefit our community. The organizers have attracted a number of key thinkers in the field, including the people who helped Qualicum.

Downtown Courtenay is a specific focus for Where is Here, but Karsten says the project is really about the whole Valley.

“If you’re interested in cultural or economic development and the future of the region, we want to see you here,” she says. To register go to bit.ly/29eijuc

Even if you can’t make the symposium you can still play an important role. Search for the #whereishereCV and #WeAreYQQ tags on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. Use the tags and for your own observations about the value of a talent-driven economy.

Every time you “engage” with these tags you’re raising the visibility of our Comox Valley talent economy. By being part of the online conversation, you are part of the solution.

I’m thrilled about Where is Here. I strongly believe that our cultural assets – our innovators, entrepreneurs, artists – are the future of our economy here in the Comox Valley. It’s good to see Karsten and CVAG making this shift happen.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

“Of Bears at Fridges, drinking Planes and Cinderella’s Shoe” is Jordis Trumby’s first children’s book. Photo supplied.
Courtenay author writes, illustrates first children’s book

When is a collaboration not a collaboration? At first glance, Courtenay author… Continue reading

The 5th Street Bridge requires structural improvements, new coating to repair and prevent corrosion, and deck repairs. File photo
City of Courtenay awards contract for 5th Street Bridge project

The City of Courtenay has awarded the contract for the rehabilitation of… Continue reading

Pumpjacks pump crude oil near Halkirk, Alta., June 20, 2007.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Larry MacDougal
Gas prices jump in the Valley – and experts predict prices to rise even more

“We still could be talking about record prices…”

NIC Practical Nursing instructor Barb McPherson (right) is pictured with student Rebecca Wood in 2018 in NIC’s SIM lab. NIC photo
Learn about Practical Nursing opportunities for Island students

Students interested in exploring a future in health care are invited to… Continue reading

The Comox Valley Cycling Coalition is hoping to see more bike lines in the Cumberland area. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Cycling coalition wants better bike links for Cumberland

Group says members want more connections with Comox Valley

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The area on Cordova Bay Road where ancestral human remains were discovered Feb. 22. (Submitted photo)
Human remains discovery a reminder of B.C. Indigenous culture dug up and displaced

‘These are the people who inspired and birthed the generations that we now have here’

Older rental apartments are prime candidates for renovations, and could result in lost affordable housing stock. (Zoë Ducklow photo)
B.C.’s renoviction overhaul a good start, but won’t preserve affordable stock, lawyer says

And still no protection for people who can’t pay rent due to COVID-19

Activists from the Fairy Creek Blockades hold the injunction application notice which was submitted by logging company Teal Jones to the B.C. Supreme Court. The application, which asks to have blockaders removed from the sites that stop access to cut blocks, is set to be heard on March 4. (Photo contributed/Joshua Wright)
Activists hunker down to protect Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew from logging

Forest company Teal Cedar applies for injunction to remove seven-month-old blockades

(Photo by Marissa Baecker/Shoot the Breeze)
B.C. WHL teams to hit the ice with Kelowna, Kamloops hub cities

Kelowna, Kamloops centres chosen to host B.C. WHL teams for 24-game regular season

The victim of the homicide on Cowichan Lake Road early Monday morning was 17 years old, and was stabbed in the incident. (File photo)
Duncan homicide victim was 17 years old

RCMP report that teenager was stabbed

(File photo)
RCMP arrest man after report of gun-toting threat-maker near Parksville schools

43-year-old man taken into custody; students at nearby schools were asked to stay inside

Most Read