His residency will involve three month-long visits between June and November 2003. The first visit has been conceived along the theme of “Re-visiting” – the goal of the first visit is to build a clear picture of the level of creativity and innovation in thinking and planning across cultural, social and business activity. This will include re-mapping and rethinking the clusters of creativity across the Metropolitan area. The second visit will move on to “Re-focusing” – the goal is to focus debate on key areas which Charles has identified as requiring rethinking. During the final visit he will focus on the issues of “Re-positioning” Adelaide – the goal is to issue a challenge for the future and provide a road map for Adelaidians to work with. The role therefore of the resident thinker is to challenge, to think outside the box, to break preconceptions and myths and on occasion even to be difficult.
One vital part of this residency program is the interesting mix of partners that have come to support the program. In addition to the government’s ‘Thinkers in Residence’ program the partners include state and local government, the Capital City Committee, the Department of Business, Manufacturing and Trade, Adelaide City Council, Playford City Council; educational partners The Centre for Lifelong Learning and Development, the University of SA and the private sector, represented by the Property Council of SA. The mere fact of this disparate group working together is part of the outcome. It is these groups that will pick up the challenge to take forward the residency. Adelaide has never been short on ideas. It is the making things happen aspect that is part of the challenge.
Recently Charles has chaired a number of urban development commissions in the UK including the ‘The Creative Lewisham’ project and the South Tyneside Transformation Plan, which resulted in the report “From Ordinary to Extra-ordinary: Transforming South Tyneside Futures’. Charles has been a regular visitor to this country as a contributor to a range of conferences and projects. Most recently he has been an advisor to the Brecknock Consulting team developing the Brisbane City Council ‘Creative City Policy’. This project, in association with Council staff, developed a new generation of cultural and creative policy that will provide an innovative framework for whole of Council creative thinking.