Indy Community Innovation Lab

The Indianapolis Community Innovation Lab is a collaborative effort between EmcArts - a nonprofit service organization based in New York - and local conveners: Spirit & PlaceGroundwork Indy, and the Kheprw Institute. The Lab seeks to uncover and advance strategies toward creating more inclusive and sustainable economies for those who are too frequently pushed aside by traditional systems, with a particular interest in youth and formerly incarcerated people.


What is a Community Innovation Lab?

Community Innovation Labs, a program of EmcArts, are a new and exciting vehicle for supporting communities to unpack complex systemic challenges, build capacity around adaptive change, and integrate the arts not only as a means of personal engagement but as a way for original strategies to be developed. To find out more about Community Innovation Labs including examples of other labs around the nation, please visit EmcArts.


The Lab is an 18-month process in three phases.

In phase 1, EmcArts works with the local partners to customize key elements of the Lab design to the local context, clarify the focus of the Lab, engage local artists, and recruit larger groups of Lab members, who represent the social diversity of the system relative to the stated challenge.

Phase 2 is comprised of four Intensive Workshops, occurring between October 2017 and April 2018, for a core group of 40-50 Lab participants. Additional community gatherings may be held in order to engage a larger cross-section of local stakeholders and influencers.

Phase 3 supports up to three cross-sector working groups that emerge from Phase 2 to foster their emerging arts-based strategies, maintaining momentum and pivoting towards testing strategies in action.


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