We’re kick-starting our regional innovation programmes in 2020, which will cover five phases of work.
This phase is to identify the big challenges each region will focus on.
Representatives from housing associations attended regional roundtables and meetings to identify the systemic challenges facing our sector. The challenges identified will:
A regional steering group will choose one challenge area for each region to collectively solve.
The key to great innovation is falling in love with the problem. So this phase will focus on gathering lots of insight about the problem highlighted in the Identify phase.
Housing association staff will attend three days of training with innovation experts ?WhatIf! Innovation, where they will learn how to run an Insight Lab workshop.
The Insight Lab workshops are free one-day events organised and facilitated by trained housing associated staff. During the workshops, staff will collaborate to get a deeper understanding of the challenge to be tackled head on.
Using all the insight gathered in the previous stage, the Ideas phase will bring together housing association staff from across the UK to get a crash-course in how to innovate by working on their strategic challenge.
Facilitated by ?WhatIf! Innovation, this three-day 'hackathon', will see participants immersed in the challenge area they are looking to solve, generate a new idea, build a prototype and then pitch it to a Dragon's Den style panel.
This is a fantastic staff development opportunity in its own right and is also the final selection round for the next phase of the innovation process.
This phase will develop a new product, service or approach that tackles the challenge identified in the earlier stages.
We will do this by having a team of housing association staff learning to innovate by doing during our 16-week full-time Greenhouse programme. During the Greenhouse, staff will participate in a number of workshops and events:
This phase of work will support regions to decide whether and how to take forward ideas that have been developed through the Greenhouse.
Housing associations in each region will have the opportunity to bid for the Greenhouse team ideas to enter the Impact phase. Viable Greenhouse ideas will receive tailored business support to help them become a reality. This stage will also include routes to market, as well as links to key stakeholders, accelerator programmes and investors.
This phase will also establish a network and events to support associations to share learnings from the programme, including the barriers to innovation, and how to take back lessons into individual organisations.