Pilots + Prototypes

 

The projects we support focus on how innovation and entrepreneurship combine to produce economic and social benefits for Canada.

Approach

Our approach to testing, piloting and prototyping policy, in controlled environments to reduce risk and better inform policy advice is simple. We commit to bringing our best selves to the table, including collaboration, cutting edge policy tools and techniques, real-world operational expertise and an in-depth understanding of government and policy.

Partnering

We are a continuously evolving group, always seeking partners and collaborators to work with. We would be happy to look at an overview of a project you have in mind.

Tools

We apply innovation policy tools in our methods. For example: Hackathons, design thinking, user-centred design, data analytics, open collaboration tools, coding and digital techniques for visualization and mapping, rapid prototyping and experimentation

Projects

We’re currently undertaking several exciting projects.

  • The Digital Literacy + Coding Pilot is a collaborative initiative aimed at creating a scalable model for building digital skills with youth across Ontario, in particular to groups underrepresented in the STEM fields today. Focusing on coding as an entry point to broader digital literacy skills, the pilot will test and evaluate how to make digital skills accessible to all in preparation for the changing nature of work.
  • Policy Innovation Platform, a pilot initiative designed to assist policy professionals in generating innovative solutions to challenges in today’s society. The Platform is our exploration of new models of collaboration in policy innovation. Engaging multidisciplinary teams and applying new approaches and tools to tricky issues, the Platform aims to demonstrate the power of leveraging the collective intelligence of  skilled, forward-thinking and civically minded individuals to accelerate change.

In our development year in 2015, we supported several exploratory projects:

  • Basecamp, an intensive summer bootcamp for entrepreneurial high school students. The Ryerson Youth Basecamp program is a transformative 6-week summer program that provides select high school students with the education, training and resources to become successful innovators and entrepreneurs.
  • ScaleUP Ventures, a new venture capital fund that will provide some of the most promising startups in Ontario with a unique combination of capital as well as access to some of Canada’s most influential business leaders. We participated as a partner organization in this initiative.
  • Challenge Accepted, a free, beginner-focused coding workshop held at the Launch Zone in the Ryerson Student Learning Centre, in partnership with the Brookfield Institute for Innovation + Entrepreneurship. The workshops were open to individuals from any academic background, with an emphasis on those outside the computer and engineering disciplines with little or no coding background. This project was the brainchild of former Ryerson chair of computer science, Alireza Sadeghian.