Big Ideas. Hard fought, fairly won. The Battle of Big Thinking is a platform for the advertising and PR industry’s biggest names to challenge...

Battle Of Big Thinking: A Creative View on Business Challenges from Advertising and Marketing Leaders


Museum of Contemporary Art
2000 NSW

Battle Of Big Thinking


Ben Cooper

Ben Cooper

Managing Director, Tricky Jigsaw

Ben Cooper is equal parts digital strategist, creative and technologist, a unique skillset honed alongside the evolution of the medium. With 18 years experience across London, Zurich and Sydney, he is regarded internationally as a forward thinker in this space.
Since March 2014, Cooper has headed the Digital, Social and Innovation capabilities at M&C Saatchi across the group's ten businesses. In May 2014, the company launched the world-first shark detection system 'Clever Buoy'. The project has gone on to win international innovation accolades that include seven Cannes Lions and the coveted Titanium, SXSW, SPIKES Grand Prix, IAB MIXX Gold 'Can't be contained' category and WARC Grand Prix. The Buoy, most importantly, has been backed in a $16m shark mitigation pledge from the NSW government.
Building on this success, Ben has built Tricky Jigsaw, a product, services and experiments business focused on marketing-led innovation. One year in, clients include Optus, CBA, Lexus and Nearmap.  
Ben also runs the Australian arm of the international digital collective Creative Social, recently published in its Hacker, Maker, Teacher, Thief: Advertising's Next Generation. Prior to M&C Saatchi he held senior digital roles at creative and content agency The Monkeys, social media start-up The Population, creative agency Host and brand experience agency The One Centre.
He is inspired by what is achievable with passionate, curious people unbound by convention.
Danny Fiorentini

Danny Fiorentini (USA)

CEO & Co-Founder, Muzeek

Originally from the United States, Danny holds a Bachelor of Science, degrees in Business from the University of Nevada and a Master of Arts in International Studies from the University of Sydney. 
He is the CEO and co-founder of Muzeek, a technology platform focused on automating the internal infrastructure for the live music industry. He is also founder and managing director of Las Vegas based indie-label Outbox Records, for which he was recognised in the Global Student Entrepreneur Awards in 2010.
He pursues a personal interest in world affairs, believes the internet saved the world, and wants to be buried on the moon.
Ali Tilling

Ali Tilling

Head of Planning, BMF

Ali has turned her hand to a few different things, including working client side at Apple Europe, editing a newspaper in Bolivia, and the odd bit of creative writing on the side.
She joined BMF in 2008, and was lucky enough to find her home in one of the bravest yet loveliest planning departments around.
She has led planning on the ALDI account for the past five years, as well as time on P&O and FFA. Lots of acronyms there.
Ali has appeared as a panellist on Gruen, and has written for several industry publications. She likes a tough battle with a nice cup of tea afterwards.
As well as the Battle of Big Thinking, Ali will be speaking at 'Order, disorder and creative chaos' at the vivid ideas exchange on 7 June.
Brett Rolfe

Brett Rolfe

Chief Strategy Officer, Naked Communications & Founder of The Schoolhouse Centre for Progressive Education

Brett is the founder of The Schoolhouse Centre for Progressive Education, a non-profit initiative to drive awareness, discussion and adoption of progressive and innovative approaches to education. He was executive producer of TEDxYouth@Sydney (a celebration of ideas by and for teenagers), and last year spoke briefly at TEDxSydney, asking 'What would school be like if we invented it today?' He was also recognised as one of four global winners of the prestigious Cannes Chimera award for creativity in the service of social endeavour. 

Brett holds a Masters in Teaching (Primary) and a Masters in Public Communication. He has written academically on subjects ranging from social movements to teaching mathematics, and was recently published in the Australian Financial Review discussing the transformation of Australian education.

As the chief strategy officer at communications agency Naked, Brett has run workshops and training on creativity and innovation, both locally and internationally.

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Bob Forster

Brendan 'Bob' Forster

Head of Creative Technology, Clemenger BBDO

Bob has had over 10 years experience in start ups and technology companies most notably an 8 year stint at Google and Youtube. There he worked closely with agencies and brands using Google's technology platforms to engage with customers in new and unique ways. Highlights of his work include collaboration on the Optus "Clever Buoy” and Australian Federal Police’s “Missing Person Preroll” that used Youtube to assist in locating missing persons in Australia. Since joining Clemenger BBDO he has worked on campaigns such as the Dolmio Pepper Hacker, Whiskas Catstacam and the new Tourism Australia Aquatic & Coastal campaign and it’s immersive 360° video experiences.
He is a strong believer that when technology and digital platforms are combined with great ideas magic can happen. As Head of Creative Technology at Clemenger BBDO Sydney Brendan works to ensure the agency stays on the bleeding edge of the creative opportunities technology presents.
Jane Burhop

Jane Burhop

Co-Founder, Common Ventures

Growing up in the middle of nowhere, the only exposure Jane had to Advertising was the ‘55ks till Maccas’ sign that stood crookedly on the side of the highway near her house. Instead of leading her to a six-pack of nuggets, this billboard subconsciously kick-started her career into Advertising.
After graduating and working 9 till 9 days, Jane opted for a career move that didn’t have a low ceiling or a safety net. In 2012, at the enthusiastic age of 24, Jane co-founded Common Ventures, with a fervent vision to shake up the industry.
Throughout her career, Jane has helped deliver internationally recognised work for brands that range from telephones, fried chicken to banks and fizzy drinks, she has sat on Award panels, collected awards and she more famously broke the internet when Common launched Game of Thrones themed wine – Wines of Westeros.
Despite the mie goreng dégustations and sleepless nights, Jane has built a company around one single, simple thought – ‘To make things that make sense’.

Event Details

Big Ideas. Hard fought, fairly won.
The Battle of Big Thinking is a platform for the advertising and PR industry’s biggest names to challenge, debate and interrogate the conventions that underpin our industry. The Battle connects creative and strategic thinking in a compelling and interactive combative format. 
Why Battle?
To challenge the conventions that underpin the business of commercial creativity. To push our thinking further, beyond the traditional client/agency relationship, to find new ground, new opportunities, new responsibilities for creative thinking.
To give each attendee at least one unanswered question that challenges the way they view their role, the industry, the future of commercial creativity.
Our contestants
A line up of creative leaders and inspirational thinkers battle it out on stage - 
This event is presented by the APG & The Communications Council

*Booking and transaction fees may apply


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