29 February 2016

Charrette: A Social Innovation Lab

by Hazel Borys, Place Makers

When you think social innovation, you might think micro loans in developing countries, or hand-ups to help people in from the fringes here at home. Or a wide range of ways to build social capital or how charitable institutions backstop community with philanthropy. But for those of you who are working in the city planning trenches every day, using collaborative design workshops to engage the people, you’re really running a form of social innovation lab.You’re drawing from diverse perspectives, co-creating solutions, and taking on a systems approach to problem solving. You’re helping the community use design thinking married up to community development to tell their own stories and make their own places, inviting participants who will use the design to be part of its creation process. You’re asking someone to help set the table, instead of inviting them to dinner that’s already been set. Making for more durable solutions to social innovation. And for way more resilient places….continue reading this piece