Michela Locatelli – Partnership Manager
1. Who are you and what do you do for TEDxEastEnd?
My name is Michela Locatelli and I’m one of the new entries in the TEDxEastEnd family.
I work in the Sponsorships and Partnerships Team together with Emma Hanafin – our task is to build, maintain and expand our network of corporate sponsors and partners.
2. What drew you to TEDxEastEnd? What is your favourite thing about TEDxEastEnd? What has been your experience highlight of working with TEDxEastEnd?
I had recently moved to London when, in a lazy early summer evening, I decided to explore the volunteering opportunities in the area. When the TEDxEastEnd advertisement popped out I knew it was exactly what I was searching for: I have been following the TED Talks for years but I had no idea that the TEDx events were fully organized by volunteers. I discovered a whole new world behind those talks, a world made of professionals who invest their time, energies and experience to make it possible for great ideas to spread. It was time to give back what I received.
I still remember my first TEDxEastEnd general meeting: it was in the evening, right at the end of a working day, and I was struck by the fact that everyone in the room was actually happy to be there. They were happy to listen to the updates of the others, and they were happy to share with the others the progress of their work. It’s not like a regular work meeting, where people can’t wait to go back to their desks or to run home. This is the incredible thing about volunteering: it doesn’t matter how tiring your day was, you will still manage to squeeze out some more energy to do it.
3. What is your favourite TED talk and why?
It might be a banal choice, but after years my favourite TED talk is still “Do schools kill creativity?”, by Sir Ken Robinson. It is brilliant – both in the content and in the exposition. I still don’t understand how he managed to tell jokes, laugh and interact with the public with only 18 minutes of time.
4. If you had to speak at TEDxEastEnd 2017, what would be your story?
That’s a tough question. I would probably talk about the dilemma of tourism in developing countries. In many popular tourist destinations there is an unbridgeable asymmetry between tourists and local people. The truth is that the first paid £600 for a flight to go to that Country (for leisure), while the others can barely afford a bus ticket to go from their village to the capital city. Tourists can do their best to avoid it, but the simple fact that they are there rubs in the face of local people their relative wealth. It’s something that blows my mind.