Bradford has long been a lab for social innovation – from the formation of the Independent Labour Party and Titus Salt’s worker’s village in the 1800s, to William Forster’s work on the first national education legislation. the first schools to offer free meals to children and the first UNESCO City of Film. We see ourselves as one of many custodians of this legacy of social impact, Impact Hub Bradford will be a home for social innovation and enterprise in the heart of Bradford’s historic Little Germany district, to serve the dreams of the people of our city and of our region.
At the heart of Impact Hub is the notion of a “Civic Collaboratory”; an organisational form that encompasses social processes, collaboration, co-design, formal and informal communication and consensus on principles and values. As both learners and facilitators at the intersection of various key sectors – public, private, voluntary, academic, entrepreneurial, NGOs and academia – the “Collaboratory” is a hub that convenes and creates dialogue across unconnected disciplines.
Our vision has been grounded in values of Leadership, Openness, Collaboration, Inclusion, Policy and Listening, qualities we aim to imbue in all our work.
A Platform for Impact and Prosperity
We see the role of Impact Hub Bradford as a platform for creating prosperity and a catalyst for bringing together innovators who wish to tackle the city’s challenges. Prosperity is a broad goal, but for our city we have very specific markers we wish to use as metrics in assessing our impact.
- Developing a membership model for 130 members by 2025, people who we’ll support to become the essence of a vibrant and thriving ecosystem for aspiring entrepreneurs who wish to have social impact.
- We offer members packages of workspace, mentoring, masterclasses and access to programmes of business support and funding.
We’re curating collisions and collaborations across sectors which would not ordinarily work together. For example: we’ve recently producing an event that brings together people from arts, healthcare and technology, co-developed a leadership programme for social innovators and convened a “Collaboratory” of organisations across the voluntary sector to raise investment for that sector.
Locally Rooted, Globally Connected
Our knowledge of and access to Bradford’s unique demographics and diversity allows us to offer a vital multicultural and youthful perspective to the wider world. We believe sharing the lived experiences and solutions of our city creates a vital solidarity with other communities around the world and a sense of being part of a global social innovation.
Our vision is coalesced around three themes – Social Innovation, Arts & Culture, Diaspora – as well as seven of the UN’s Sustainable Developments goals – Gender Equality, Decent Work & Economic Growth, Reduced Inequalities, Sustainable Cities & Communities, Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, Partnerships for the Goals.
Our Impact Hub is also part of a network of 101 other impact hubs across five continents and encompassing 17000 members. We’re excited to be a part of this global community of social innovators and hope to bring all we learn to the Necessity community.
You can find out more about our projects, programmes, our team and our city at bradford.impacthub.net.