Doc Accelerator is a project and initiative lead by the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival – best known as Hot Docs. In 2011, a collaborative effort by Manifesto Community Projects, Schools without Borders (SWB), JUMPWIRE Media, mediaINTELLIGENCE, and Hot Docs to design an industry training program for emerging media makers was proposed to the Ontario Trillium Foundation.

The Ask: In a short 3 months, formalize Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) with each partner in this multi-year initiative and create an outreach and marketing strategy to find 50 young adults (aged 18-30) with aspirations to make film, or be in the business. Next step: develop a curriculum and series of both industry and festival events to introduce the incredible first cohort of the program and generate networking opportunities.

The Program: Global360 leveraged our experience in partnership development to quickly develop agreements, workflow, and strategy with each of the 5 partners. Manifesto and SWB executed the outreach campaign and used cloud tools such as Smartsheet to capture data and registration details. Global360 then worked closely with each partner as well as Hot Docs Industry staff to create a compelling and fun industry primer at the Hot Docs 2012 festival.

The Result: The first cohort of 50 young and aspiring Doc Accelerator participants experienced Hot Docs through a curated curriculum of films, conference sessions and master classes to give them a roadmap for navigating the festival for the first time. Private sessions, organized by Media Intelligence and Jumpwire, provided the basics on how to get a job in the industry, how to be productive in the creative industries, find your passion, and develop your skill set. The Doc Accelerator initiative has continued on through subsequent festivals, providing emerging filmmakers with the access, networking, and skills development that are critical to success in the industry.