Eric Weiner explores places in the world, renowned for producing geniuses, from Ancient Greece to Silicon Valley. Read on to find out what it is about these places that produces creativity and divergent thinking. Sidney Tan interprets.

 

In his book, “The Geography of Genius”, travel writer Eric Weiner explores the idea that geniuses are made, and not necessarily borne of hard work or the excessive accumulation of knowledge. The idea that locations may have circumstances or elements that can nurture and produce music prodigies, inventors or other types of geniuses, is exciting to say the least. Particularly in the context of city planning.

 

In tracking the birthplaces of renowned figures such as Mozart’s Vienna or Jack Ma’s Hangzhou, Weiner discovers that certain locales produce more geniuses and innovative thought leaders than others.

 

He sets out to several cities, exploring their histories in different time periods to find out what is in the water that drives/drove innovation.

 

geography of genius eric weiner sidney tan
Illustration: Sidney Tan (c) 2017

 

Ancient Greece

geography of genius, eric weiner, sidney tan
Illustration: Sidney Tan (c) 2017

 

Huangzhou, China

geography of genius, eric weiner, sidney tan
Illustration: Sidney Tan (c) 2017

 

Silicon Valley

geography of genius, eric weiner, sidney tan
Illustration: Sidney Tan (c) 2017

 

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Eric Weiner is a popular speaker and author of the New York Times bestseller The Geography of Bliss, Man Seeks God, and the recent The Geography of Genius. Weiner’s books have been translated into more than 20 languages.

 

Sidney Tan is a graphic artist known for quirky illustrations and designs for magazines, theatre posters, experimental videos and comics. ┬áThe mastermind behind the animated web series, ‘Blue Karipap’, which won ‘Best Internet Animation’ at the 13th Seoul International Cartoon & Animation Festival 2009, and for the illustrated book, ‘Flying Amah’, he has also been recognised for several advertising awards. He currently works for The Mill in Los Angeles.