Sowing positive futures: How a Christchurch urban farm leads vulnerable people into the workplace

Urban farming

Sowing positive futures: How a Christchurch urban farm leads vulnerable people into the workplace

Urban farming is nothing new, as evidence of the practice can be found in heritage sites like Machu Picchu. However, the trend has picked up more around the world in recent years and with the majority of the world’s population now based in cities, urban farming is a creative antidote to the negative side effects of rural produce farming as the world faces water shortages and a lack of arable land. Caitlin Salter talks to the founders of Cultivate in Christchurch, who are doing much more than cultivating the land – they’re supporting the community while they’re at it.

Taking tourism to the world

Tourism may be Aotearoa’s largest export industry these days. Yet despite the many other accelerator programmes operating in New Zealand, there hasn’t been a Lightning Lab Tourism – until now. Here, we look at the six teams taking part in the accelerator, featuring : Road Guru, PowerTrip, Stay Native, Hidden Gems, AirGuides, CHU NZ and Tourism Ticker.


Hila Oren is the CEO of the Tel Aviv and founder of Tel Aviv Global. At the age of 25, she was hired by the city’s mayor to come up with a story, or brand, for Tel Aviv. Now, Tel Aviv is globally recognised as a hotbed of innovation, while Oren is world-renown for her work in elevating the city to be recognised globally for its start-up culture. On a recent trip to Auckland, she discussed how to pinpoint the key qualities of a city’s identity, how New Zealand’s cities can become better recognised on the world stage, and more.

Elevator Pitch, brought to you by Flick

In the latest instalment of our Flick Electric Co. Elevator Pitch series, Emily Heazlewood, stands in an elevator and explains why – and how – she's created an app called Romer that helps match people to unique and personalised experiences around them, from finding the best cocktail in town to the coolest waterfall walks.

Firm foundations

New Zealand firm Architectus has joined forces with Danish library design experts Schmidt Hammer Lassen to deliver Christchurch a new quake-resistant library called Tūranga. The building opened this month and has a self-centring mechanism that allows it to sway and return to its original position, meaning that it can withstand structural damage during a large earthquake.

Cultural preservation

Realityvirtual’s Simon Che de Boer recently had a hand in documenting one of the world’s most ancient civilisations in VR. And now, he’s keen to get to work on his passion project: local cultural preservation work of the Christchurch Cathedral. He wants to resurrect the old Cathedral in VR using publicly sourced photography, so is putting out a call to the public to submit any photos or videos they have of the building pre-earthquake, and using deep learning, a company can fill in the missing data and build a VR experience around this.