Sponge sparks innovation with new team

Posted on Jun 12, 2017

Games & gamification

Interactive video

360°, VR & AR

A new innovation department, dedicated to developing emerging technologies and applying them to workplace learning, has been launched by leading digital learning company, Sponge. 

The business is building on its reputation as a market disrupter by investing in Research and Development (R&D) activities with the aim of pushing the boundaries of learning technologies. Called Sparkworks, the new department will identify, define and create new technologies and learning innovations to enable organisations to access faster, more effective, measurable learning.

Sparkworks is the brainchild of Kate Pasterfield, double award-winning learning technologies designer, who was previously Creative Director at Sponge and now leads at the company on innovation.

"An important approach to innovation is being collaborative and continuous. Asking, ‘what can we do with the skills and tools we have to better serve our clients’, is as important to us as defining what horizon technologies will disrupt the way we work in future."
Kate Pasterfield Circle
Kate Pasterfield Head of Innovation Sponge

Fit for the future

Sparkworks hosts regular internal ‘Donut Dropin’ events with colleagues to share ideas in exchange for Krispy Kremes.  Kate said: “The whole company is getting behind Sparkworks and our mission to move digital learning forward.  Our latest event invited our colleagues to ‘reimagine Storyline’. We gained more than 300 contributions from our internal team alone and now embrace the challenge of deciding how to move the ideas forward!  

Events like these mean clients benefit from the very latest thinking, expert ideas and technology improvements, so they can be confident the learning solutions they invest in are world-class and fit for the future.”

Sponge’s Sparkworks team has already developed i360° video technology, allowing immersive interactive video to be combined with a layer of interactions and feedback to create a deeply engaging situational learning experience. The new technology works for both desktop and mobile virtual reality (VR), making it an accessible and flexible option for corporate learning. 

Sparkworks is also available for ‘special projects’; working with clients to collaborate on ground-breaking technologies to pilot within organisations. ‘We especially like working with forward thinkers who seek to push boundaries, knowing that at the very least the experience will inform their thinking and at best – it just might work, “ added Kate. 

"Companies need to be prepared for the future and this is a great way to play in that space and gain new insights before these technologies become mainstream."
Kate Pasterfield Circle
Kate Pasterfield Head of Innovation Sponge

Kate Pasterfield is the current gold winner of Learning Technologies Designer of the Year at the Learning Technologies Awards and the bronze recipient of Learning Professional of the Year at the 2017 Learning Awards.

She will be presenting a seminar on emerging technologies, the changing workplace and the future of learning at Learning Technologies Summer Forum on Tuesday, June 13, 2017 at Olympia London. Back to the future! An invitation to workplace learning in 2025 takes place in Theatre 2 from 1.15pm to 1.45pm (GMT+1) in the main exhibition hall.  

Next month, Kate will be presenting at the Elearning Guild’s, enhanced realities conference, Realities360 in San Jose, California.  Her session, entitled, Making Immersive Learning Accessible with Mobile VR, takes place from 2:30 PM - 3:30 PM (PDT) on Wednesday, July 26, 2017.       

Ask an expert

Kate Pasterfield, Head of Innovation, Sponge

Kate leads the innovation department at Sponge, bringing the latest learning technologies and strategies to international clients from a variety of sectors.

Awarded Learning Technologies Designer of the year, it's clear that great learning starts with bright ideas, if you want to explore an innovative learning solution with Kate, get in touch.

Ask The Expert 1 Col Kate Nicholls