New Social Enterprise, COTO - Culture on the Offensive, are active in running talks, events and sessions in Leicester, promoting ‘The Art of Thinking’ around philosophical themes, current societal concerns or organisational issues. In Public Social or Organisational settings, the main purpose is to get the audience to engage and open their minds to different ways of seeing things. Within Businesses and Organisations the sessions imaginatively encourage communication, collaboration and cohesion, by allowing people from different areas to understand colleagues positions. At the public social events you have a chance to get "offline" meeting people you may not agree with, outside of your echo chambers. We enable people to meet, think, eat and drink using empathy, clarity and courage when engaging in ensuing discussions. We are happy to work in partnership with other organisations and/or venues. We have been running our events as pilots and we have done over 50 different sessions.
What we'll deliver:
Why it's a great idea:
In todays climate it feels like our culture is becoming more and more polarised and people get stuck in their own echo chambers. It seems that different opinions are becoming less and less tolerated and people are demonising those they disagree with. Many would argue that this is due to the rise of Social Media. We also find that in businesses and organisations people can sometimes only see things from their own point of view. However, as a new Social Enterprise we can make a difference with fun, social, thought provoking ‘talk and discussion’ events called the ‘Art of Thinking.’ COTO - Culture on the Offensive is run by Leicester based philosopher / public intellectual Dr Greg Scorzo along with creative director Lizzie Soden. We have already run over 50 pilot sessions with no funding where profits go into the next session. We have so far teamed up with LCB Depot, Leicester Secular Society, Brewdog, Attenborough Arts, Phoenix Arts and Soft Touch and with many events and festivals. .
Steps to get it done:
As our reputation has grown we attracted a number of guests who engaged in conversations with Dr Greg Scorzo about the 'thinking behind their thinking:' Claire Fox from Radio 4’s Moral Maze and director of the Academy of Ideas, Andrew Doyle, comedian and co-writer of Jonathan Pie, and journalist and writer Ella Whelan. We do not shy away from controversial thinkers, as we think it's important that people understand different viewpoints rather than jump to judgements, even when they disagree. These were all followed by an audience discussion. Seeing how enthusiastic people are, we are now at a stage where we need to attract investment and sponsorship to allow us to not only create stable employment for the 2 people running the enterprise, but also get an office space where we can build a team of work placements and volunteers. We have worked with student volunteers from both DMU and Leicester University but need a proper office to manage student placements and internships.
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