Lab Format

The Lab will run initially as a pilot for one year. The format of the Lab will consist of three workshops on the following dates:

  • November 24-25, 2016
  • March 1-2, 2017
  • June 7-8, 2017

The general format of the workshops is as follows:

  1. Seeing the System – The goal of this workshop is to gain a broad and deep understanding of the system and open new possibilities for interpretation. We will use whole system thinking tools to uncover assumptions, mental models, and bring a diversity of viewpoints.
  2. Designing – Social innovation tools and methods will be used to identify emerging patterns, programs, initiatives, ideas that could transform the system. Possible innovations and opportunities will be explored.
  3. Prototyping – Design thinking tools will be used to prototype possible innovations and opportunities. A rapid iteration process is used to maximize learning while minimizing the feedback loop.

Why Should You Participate in the Lab?

Joining the Lab will give your organization the opportunity to take a visible leadership role in helping to shape the future of a food system in the Greater Toronto Area that minimizes waste. By participating in this innovative problem solving approach, you can:

  • Unlock new opportunities for collaboration with leaders in the food system
  • Find ways to be more cost effective in your organization’s operations
  • Increase the effectiveness of your work

Lab Participant Attributes

Here are some attributes that we are seeking from lab participants:

  • Ability to influence the actions of your organization
  • Deep curiosity
  • Passion for social innovation
  • Ability and desire to commit the time required
  • Comfort with ambiguity
  • Trust in the process
  • Links with other organizations and networks in the food system
  • Love of learning and desire to share their unique insights and experience
  • Openness to the idea that if we want to change the system, we also need to see our role in it and be open to changing ourselves at some level

Application Form

The application for the third workshop is now closed.