The deliverable 3.3, Framework for Innovation Playgrounds, was submitted by Space Engagers (SE) in March 2020. Following, the executive summary of the deliverable:
“This Report provides a spatial and socio-economic “Framework for Innovation Playgrounds”, including an overview and practical guidance on putting an Innovation Playground in place. An Innovation Playground, as defined in +CityxChange, is a designated area of a city where different physical and virtual places and activities relating to innovation are brought together into a coherent whole to facilitate collaboration, empower citizens, and find new ways of addressing challenges that matter to people. The Framework is made up of three parts: a System, a Journey, and a Localised Innovation Playground.
The System is made up of four interrelated elements:
- Places: the virtual or physical locations where new ideas, for example, related to energy transition, emerge and evolve.
- Activities: active processes such as events, meetings, mapping, etc. that are connected to energy transition and innovation in the city.
- Data: existing or new data relevant to the energy transition that provides an evidence base for innovation.
- Enabling Mechanisms: mechanisms that enable stakeholders to put an InnovationPlayground in place.
The Innovation Playground is structured by a coherent Journey in four stages:
- Observation: Gathering data and knowledge at the hyperlocal level to help us all understand the lived experience of citizens.
- Sense-making: Interpreting, analysing and synthesising available information.
- Co-design: where experts and others come together to solve shared problems.
- Prototyping: developing a mock-up of innovation in the online or offline ‘places’ of the Innovation Playground.
The purpose of a Localised Innovation Playground is therefore to:
- Bring different virtual and physical places and activities related to innovation into a coherent structure.
- Facilitate collaboration.
- Empower citizens to actively participate in processes of change.
- Find new ways of addressing challenges that matter to people.
The desired outcomes of an Innovation Playground are:
- Engagement of a broad cross-section of citizens and society in innovation.
- Empowerment of citizens and other stakeholders to feel able to influence their place and change things.
- Progression towards UN Sustainable Development Goals (United Nations, 2019) and becoming a positive energy city.
- Outputs of an Innovation Playground will include new ways of doing things; new partnerships, places, tools and activities. The key stakeholders who will use an Innovation Playground include building owners and occupants, citizens / communities, civil society organisations (CSOs), local government, universities / research groups, entrepreneurs and other innovators.“