Thank you!

The YAIC team would like to thank everyone who attended for making it such a fantastic and inspiring event. We hope to see you all again next year!

Check out the highlights!

Tómas R. Einarsson plays You Are In Control Day 2

Video interview with Ian Livingstone, Games Workshop

Colin Mercer: Towards Creative Iceland

Colin Mercer has been Director for the project ‘Towards Creative Iceland: Building local, going global,’ Iceland’s first national creative industries mapping project, which is now nearing completion.

Mercer’s results, while still unofficial (research is ongoing), indicate very positive growth in all the creative and cultural sectors in Iceland over the last decade. After outlining the project’s aims and methods, he showed – among other things – that Iceland has the highest percentage of employees in the CCI in the EU/EEA in relation to the total labour force, with a government turnover in the sector a massive 23.6 billion Icelandic Kronur (unofficial figures) – bigger than the agricultural sector.

Breaking down the findings so far, Mercer showed how the largest or more productive of the sector Creative Industries are the audio-visual (software, gaming, TV radio) at 35%, then the Performance sector (23%, among the highest in Europe), Visual Arts and Design (13.5%) and Books (9.2%). He showed that the rise in all these sectors has been significant in the last few years and , despite the inevitable dip in 2008/2009, are already starting to show an upturn again.


The YAIC afternoon workshops featured a handpicked group of international and Icelandic creative industry people openly discussing a range of topics.

The “Creatives Connecting With Consumers workshop”, moderated by Haukur S. Magnússon, Editor of the Reykjavik Grapevine, covered many angles in terms of how to find and maintain connections with your fan base, with people like Christopher Peterka, founder of Gannaca, pointing out that old methods like meeting or calling people are still hugely valid despite the impression of online communication.

Keith Harris, Director of Performer Affairs for PPL UK and Stevie Wonder’s representative moderated the “Copyrighting Creative Content” workshop. The building of an ambitious copyright database was mooted, as was the contrastive value of crowd-sourcing for creativity. A murky and eternal industry topic at the best of times, as Harris noted — “we didn’t solve the copyright issue but we did have some good ideas”.

Peter Dreyer, Managing Director of Elevator2, moderated the “Innovation & The Internet” panel, which discussed turning the internet into a learning experience, how the next generation of Internet usage might look, and how to make sure creatives are finding an audience abroad, among other topics.

The group concluded that one of the online problems today is that you have to be both social and creative – yet without sacrificing one for the other.

“Ahead of the Game: Ethical Business is Smart Business”, moderated by Hulda Steingrímsdóttir, Environmental Consultant at Alta Consulting, looked at the key question of what the industry can do to make sure it’s being  ethical.

Threads of the discussion touched on companies needing to mostly be aware of what they should be doing – for themselves as well as business to business, and working towards a triple bottom line – economic, social and environmental – in order to develop accountability with a kind of code of conduct to encourage further transparency.

Video highlights from Day 1 of YAIC

KreaNord New Nordic Food & Performance Showcase

Video interview with Canadian filmmaker Peter Wintonick

YAIC: Networking Meetings

Sóley playing at You Are In Control

Nora playing at the Asmundarsafn

Video interview with Audioporn’s Simon Iddol

Keynote: Ian Livingstone

Day two of YAIC kicked off with an enigmatic keynote from Ian Livingstone, Life President of Eidos and one of the UK’s founding fathers of interactive entertainment.

In 1975 he founded Games Workshop with Steve Jackson and launched Dungeons & Dragons in Europe, he launched White Dwarf, the UK’s first interactive games magazine in 1977 and co-wrote The Warlock of Firetop Mountain, the first in the Fighting Fantasy series of interactive gamebooks with sales in excess of 16 million copies in 25 languages.

Ian took us on a personal and charming tour of his early days in the industry and development within the games industry, including a highly nostalgic tour of video games from Pacman and Lemmings up to Wipeout and Tomb Raider, which he helped to secure for Eidos.

Stating that games are mostly criticised by people who’ve never played them, he went on to show just how potent the industry is (worth $90 billion in software alone), illustrating the breadth and scope of today’s games scene, from the content diversity to the variety of platforms available today (did you know, for example, that 65 million people play Farmville on Facebook? No, neither did we!).

Livingstone took us through the development of Lara Croft, a sketched character invented by an illustrator for one of his companies in the 90s, to the megabrand she is today – more recongisable than the pope and worth $1.5 billion in revenue. A powerful and engaging insight from a true gaming legend.

Video interview with Anamaria Wills, today’s inaugural keynote speaker

Video Interview: Imogen Heap & Thomas Ermacora