TEDxLuanda – Januario Jano – Organizer

In Collaborating, Producing by Mark Sylvester

The Hack: We take a tour after the event into the countryside to villages that would never be able to attend TEDx


Januario Jano is the Organizer for TEDxLuanda, which is a beautiful city on the western coast of Angola. He is a global soul, born in Angola, with homes in London and Lisbon. Angola is a former Portuguese colony. Watching the TED Talk by Sir Ken Robinson changed everything for him and incited him to be a change agent.

In 2012 he wanted to get a license for Luanda and applied, however, he wanted a more significant event than 100, so he invested in attending TED Active in Palm Springs. He came back home to educate his community and friends about the power of TED. Since then, he also made the trip to Doha for the TEDxSummit.

In 2005 Luanda became an economic boom town. Playing on this, Jano blends the regions deep African roots with entrepreneurial vitality to create a unique event. I love his story about having a big dinner the week before where past speakers, the current slate of speakers, local leaders, influencers and the press gather around great food to get excited about the upcoming event.

Jano does this cool thing after the event, he takes a few of the speakers, and they travel hundreds of miles into the countryside taking the talks and ideas out into the villages that would never be exposed to them.

How can I be useful and help my country?"Januario Jano, TEDxLuanda Organizer

The Lightning Round

  • Tell us a bit about your background and your TEDx origin story.

    I started watching TED Talks in University in London.

  • How many TEDx events have you worked with or produced?

    He went to TED Active in 2012, and TEDSummit at Doha in 2016

  • What makes your TEDx unique?

    They do a pre-TED event in the week before where they invite past speakers, local leaders, influencers, the current speakers and the team to preview the upcoming event.

  • What’s your Superpower?

    The Creative process - collaborating and producing.

  • What was the biggest surprise while working on your event?

    "This has been life-changing for me. I discover a lot of stuff I'd never have known about. It's taught me a lot about responsibility."

  • Every event has its challenges, what was the biggest dragon you had to overcome?

    The amount of work involved (where have we heard that before?) and building a stable team not wholly made of students.

  • What’s one piece of advice you have for veteran organizers? For first-timers?

    Be realistic with your available resources.

  • Looking forward to your next event, what excites you the most?

    Reframing the event as ideas worth doing and creating impact.

  • What’s a TEDx event that you’d like to attend?

    His own. TEDxLuanda

  • The show is called Hacking the Red Circle, so what's your best hack?

    We take a tour after the event into the countryside to remote villages that would never be able to attend TEDx

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