At the heart of Montreal’s Conférence régionale des élus (CRÉ) is an initiative named Montréal ville apprenante de la créativité et de l’innovation whose intention is to position Montreal as an innovative and creative learning city. As the organization’s staff wished to explore new concepts (such as living labs) and generate ideas to imagine its future and improve how it functioned, it called upon percolab. We drew on our extensive network of educational innovators and on our experience with living labs and collaboration circles to support the organisation in creating a learning circle.
Participants from diverse sectors (La CRÉ, educational institutions, municipal libraries, community organizations, and from the world of social innovation) came together for six sessions held over a six month period in six different locations across the city (a cooking school, a theatre, a community organization, a coworking space, a library, and the CRÉ’s own offices), to co-creatively explore the different aspects of the learning city.
What emerged from these six sessions was a bounty of fresh and creative ideas, a number of concrete projects that are being followed up on, an expanded network of contacts for the organization, support and feedback on its existing projects, and capacity-building for its staff.