Social Innovation Canada 2014

This May, SiG is inviting some of the world’s leading social innovators, social entrepreneurs and social financiers to meet with Canada’s social innovation community in five Canadian cities:

May 13 | June 18
May 21 – 26
May 26 – 30
May 22
May 27 

The purpose of these events is to:
      • Showcase Canada’s social innovation partnerships with government, universities, non-profits, foundations, businesses and citizens.
      • Learn from global best practices.
      • Create a forum where theoreticians, policy makers, grassroots activists and social innovation practitioners can share insights and have fun.
      • Strengthen the capacity of Canadians to work together across sectors and disciplines to solve our toughest social challenges
…Thank you to our Partners/Sponsors!

Events in Montreal

Photo by DAVID Iliff. License: CC-BY-SA 3.0

Photo by DAVID Iliff. License: CC-BY-SA 3.0

Collaboration + Networking: Connecting Social Innovation Actors in Quebec

A RQISCRISESRéseau Trans-tech Roundtable chaired by Hélène P. Tremblay on networking social innovation actors and their place in the research ecosystem. Panelists include:

Date: May 13, 3.15 – 4.30pm
Location: Université Concordia, Pavillon HALL (HH) – H-553
Contact: Melanie Bisson

l’Institut du Nouveau Monde Social Entrepreneurs Gathering (À go, on change le monde!)

The Social Entrepreneurs Gathering 2014 – “The Challenges of Marketing and Funding” – aims to bring together more than 200 people, primarily entrepreneurs, social innovators, and key actors in social entrepreneurship, finance, and both the private and public sectors. The event will bring these different actors together to understand the power and importance of creating the right conditions to support social enterprise in Quebec and to develop innovative responses to social, economic, cultural, territorial and environmental challenges. 

The program “Let’s Go! We are changing the world!” supports a new generation of entrepreneurs that are solving social and environmental challenges through the development of innovative and economically viable solutions.

Date: June 18

Events in and around Toronto

C/O John Vetterli

C/O John Vetterli

Social Innovations within Markets Workshop

A rising number of organizations (social enterprises) have made it their central mission to advance social welfare goals within markets, violating the conventional division of responsibilities between for-profit and not-for- profit organizations. Scholarly work has trailed practice in this rapidly evolving field, but recent work has advanced a number of useful analytical concepts including ‘social innovations,’ ‘hybrid organizations,’ and ‘base of the pyramid.’ Join a one day workshop in which participants will reflect on both the long standing and emerging opportunities and challenges faced by these organizations.

Date: May 21, 9.30-5pm
Location: University of Waterloo, ON, Environment 3

Family by Family: Australian social innovation in action

A public presentation by The Australian Centre for Social Innovation (TACSI) as part of SiG’s Inspiring Action for Social Impact Series and the MaRS Global Leadership Series.

Date: May 22, 5.30-7pm
Location: MaRS Discovery District, 101 College St., Toronto

Labs for System Change

Around the world public and social innovation labs are increasingly seen as vehicles to create system change. They convene stakeholders from across society to develop, test and scale new solutions to social problems. Labs help governments to collaborate with society in solving these problems. They support public and social innovation on the local, national and global level.

Labs for System Change is a gathering of the world’s leading lab practitioners and thinkers to share, develop and capture knowledge of global lab practices. To gain a better understanding of what constitutes a good lab and its approaches. Over 30 international leading lab practitioners and thinkers will convene at MaRS have confirmed, among them are:

  • Geoff Mulgan, CEO, Nesta (UK)
  • Christian Bason, Director, MindLab (Denmark)
  • Adam Kahane, Partner, Reos North America, Chairman (CAN) 
  • Beth Noveck, GovLab (US)
  • Frances Westley, Chair, Waterloo Institute for Social Innovation and Resilience (CAN)
  • Sarah Schulman, Founder, InWithForward (NL/CAN)
  • Chris Sigaloff, Chair, Kennisland (NL)
  • Eduardo Staszowski, Director, DESIS Lab at Parsons Design School, New York (US)
  • Chelsea Mauldin, Director, Public Policy Lab, New York (US)
  • Chris Vanstone, Director, Co-Design, TACSI (Australia)
  • Gabriella Gomez-Mont, Director, Lab for the City (MEX)
  • Andrea Siodmok, Director, Cabinet Office Policy Lab (UK)
  • Giulio Quaggiotto, Head, UNDP Global Pulse Lab (IDN)
  • Indy Johar, Sr Innovation Associate, Young Foundation (UK)
  • Joeri van den Steenhoven, Director, MaRS Solutions Lab (CAN)

Date: May 26, 9am-4.30pm
Location: MaRS Discovery District, 101 College St, Toronto
Contact: Satsuko VanAntwerp

Shift Disturbers

A public presentation by Geoff Mulgan on the predators and creators in capitalism’s future as part of the Rotman School of Management’s #ShiftDisturbers Speaker Series.

Date: May 26, 5-6pm
Location: Desautels Hall, Rotman School of Management, 105 St. George St, Toronto

Festival of Social Innovation

Ten years ago, a group of intrepid entrepreneurs bucked convention and opened the Centre for Social Innovation – one of the first coworking spaces in the world! We are so proud of everything that’s happened since: the hundreds upon hundreds of initiatives and collaborations that have created real impact, and the socials and parties that have brought us together as a community. It started with 14 founding tenants and we now have 700 projects that make CSI their home.

Come join us for a fun-filled, family-friendly event with activities and demos! Dance party to follow in the evening!

Date: May 31, 2-6pm
Location: CSI Annex
Cost: Free
Join the event!

100 in 1 Day Toronto

What if hundreds of people united, each putting in place the changes they wish to see in their city, all on the same day?

On June 7, for the first time-ever, Toronto will host 100 in 1 Day. This citizen-driven festival will unite people across the city to make Toronto a better place by creating acts of urban change.

These acts, or interventions, have the potential to raise awareness of urban and social issues, inspire ideas, and motivate leaders to consider new approaches to old problems. Attend a workshop to develop your intervention.

Date: June 7
Location: Toronto

Events in Vancouver

C/O Thomas Quine

C/O Thomas Quine

100 in 1 Day Workshop

On June 7, for the first time-ever, Vancouver will host 100 in 1 Day. This citizen-driven festival will unite people across the city to make Vancouver a better place by creating acts of urban change. These acts, or interventions, have the potential to raise awareness of urban and social issues, inspire ideas, and motivate leaders to consider new approaches to old problems.

Beginning March 26th, people of all ages, backgrounds and locations across the city are invited to attend workshops to develop their 100 in 1 Day interventions—from idea to execution.

This workshop process, co-hosted by Changemakers Vancouver, is meant to inspire generative, creative and reflective urban interventions, and for you to share your ideas for making your city a better place to live.

Date: May 21, 6-9pm
Location:  SFU Goldcorp Centre for the Arts
Cost: Free

RADIUS Social Entrepreneur Failure Wake

The evening will feature several short stories of failure from brave social entrepreneurs, a lightning round to hear from inspired members of the audience, and an Irish Wake style celebration to help us fete our failed attempts.

After all, in entrepreneurship, failure is the fertile soil in which new ventures grow.

Date: May 26, 6-9.30pm
Location: Backstage Lounge, Granville Island
Cost: $15 online, $20 at the door.
Website and registration

An Introduction to the Power of Narrative Workshop

Join South African author and narrative expert, Chené Swart for an engaging half-day workshop. Chené will share a powerful framework and explore a series of questions including “How do we change and challenge popular beliefs and the way we do things?” and “How do we re-author our individual and communal narratives?”

Date: May 27, 9am-1pm 
Location: Park Room, Christ Church Cathedral
Registration Contact: Roberta Hardie

Social Innovation Exchange (SIX) 2014 Global Gathering

The annual SIX Summer Schools bring together leading social innovation thinkers and practitioners from around the world to explore some of the key issues facing the field. Taking place for the first time in North America, SIX Vancouver 2014 focuses on the theme of culture shifting, and the role culture plays in enabling or hindering social innovations.

Dates: May 27 12-9pm, May 28-29 all day
Locations: Granville Island Hotel, Musqueam Cultural Centre & Emily Carr University
Contact: Devon Krainer; Invite-only event
Official Blog

Social Innovation Challenge with SFU’s Certificate Program for Community Economic Development

The Certificate Program for Community Economic Development at SFU is hosting its new course “Social Innovation Challenge” on May 27 & 28 at the historic Dodson Conference Centre. At the end of the collab-etition, four teams will share a $25,000 prize donated by the Dragonfly Fund at Tides Canada.

Participants in the challenge come from all over – Yukon, Montreal, Barcelona, Tofino, Calgary, Ymir, the Downtown Eastside and Victoria to name a few. They are champions for local living economies and work in social enterprise, non-profits, business associations, credit unions and municipal government.

Dates: May 27-28
Location: Dodson Conference Centre
More information

Gen Why Media Intergenerational Dialogue

A casual, reflective evening filled with musical performance from Buckman Coe and a facilitated cross-generational dialogue. A “Generation Y’er” and a Baby Boomer discuss the elements of power, love and culture in the context of social change.

Produced by Gen Why Media, creators of the Bring Your Boomers dialogue series.

Date: May 28, 8:30-10pm
Location: Backstage Lounge, Granville Island

FUEL: the Future of Urbanity, the Environment & our Lifestyle

FUEL is a future forum that will explore the global issues of our time by encouraging conversation, and therefore understanding, of how we can collectively create a better world. Over the course of two days, FUEL will connect innovators from around the globe with local entrepreneurs, designers, engaged citizens and leaders from public, private and nonprofit sectors in a dynamic and inspirational experience.

Dates: May 29 – 30
Locations: Vancouver Playhouse, Museum of Vancouver

Social Frontiers Research Conference

Building upon the pioneering work leading social innovation research, this symposium will explore how social innovation and culture come together.

Date: May 30, all day
Location: Creekside Community Recreation Center; Website
Contact: Shauna Sylvester

Connect Vancouver: Ideas Jam and Urban Outdoor Festival

What new ideas will move us forward? Solve our toughest challenges like poverty, homelessness, social isolation while creating a vibrant future for the next generation.

That question is at the heart of Connect Vancouver, a festival of new thinking and practice to improve the social and economic well being for all, taking place Friday May 30, 2014.

The festival will bring together Vancouver citizens and innovators with social change champions from around the world.

Connect Vancouver is made up of two parts:

  • Connect Vancouver Afternoon: From 1-6pm, join the Ideas Jam featuring concurrent sessions with Table Talks and Social Change Exchange
  • Connect Vancouver Evening: From 6pm onwards, get outside to the Urban Outdoor Festival in Vanier Park
Ideas Jam

Through an afternoon Ideas Jam, we will explore big questions on social innovation themes that are important to the citizens of Vancouver. The jam will explore topics such as social entrepreneurship, radical sustainability, art for social change, healthy democracy, belonging, and generational inequality.

Date: May 30, 1-6pm
Location: Museum of Vancouver and Space Centre
Cost: Free!
RSVP: On Eventbrite

Urban Outdoor Festival

Gen Why Media and CityStudio present an evening celebrating the integration of culture, creativity, ingenuity and social innovation. An outdoor celebration kicks off at 6pm, featuring local food trucks, eatART (energy awareness through art) robotic sculptures, bubble blowing, First Nations dance and drumming, and other cultural performances. Children are welcome!

Date: May 30, 6pm until late
Location: Vanier Park
Cost: Free!
RSVP: On Eventbrite

Event in Windsor

C/O Info Windsor

C/O Info Windsor

YKNOT Windsor-Essex Launch

WEtech Alliance announces its strategy to addresses the out-migration of young talent from Windsor-Essex by building community, sharing opportunity, and bringing voice to those in their 20’s and 30’s though digital media and social innovation. More info on their website.

Date: May 22, 10am
Location: Downtown Windsor Business Accelerator
Contact: Dan Brown

Event in Ottawa


The Government of Canada hosts Geoff Mulgan

Date: May 27, all day
Location: TBA
Invite-only event


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