Barbara Hanna, Ph.D. and Denise Restauri, Founder & CEO of GirlQuake and contributor, were members of the Hacking and Making: Inspired by Women panel at the World Summit on Innovation and Entrepreneurship, held in October 2013 in New York City. Both frustrated with boring old power point presentations and more interested in actions than words, they decided to evolve from “Y.A.P.” (Yet Another Panel) by engaging members of the audience and taking action on stage that will help solve one of the world’s most vexing problems. They also decided to show what happens when four women – from multiple generations – who have never met before, can connect to change the world, starting with taking on-stage actions.

During the panel, they were joined by: Veronika Scott, founder of the Empowerment Plan, a Detroit based non-profit that creates jobs for homeless women who want them and gives coats to homeless individuals who need them; and Shauna Mei, founder and CEO of a curated marketplace for creative and inspiring objects.

Barbara created a connected experience linking arts and technology, and invited three unprepared audience members on stage to help draw an ornament that could be sold to benefit the Empowerment Plan. While Denise interviewed Veronika and Shauna, Barbara took the drawing and 3D printed a prototype. This live performance (without a rehearsal) meant on stage failure was possible but the experiment, the connections and the action, i.e. the journey and not the destination, were the key take home messages.