Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Skills for innovation and growth

News that the federal government's next budget will focus on innovation and skills is welcome. A few years ago I wrote an article about how innovation skills - what I called innovation literacy - can be taught, practiced and learned. And while I was focused at the time on applied research conducted in colleges, the outcomes associated with innovation skills are equally applicable across the entire educational spectrum, including primary and secondary. Innovation skills are needed for us to enable a full spectrum innovation capacity in Canada. I recently came across this post on skills that includes a very useful set of outcomes and "encyclopedia of real skills" - what the author calls soft skills (and which is a much better term). Focusing on what I have previously called the transactional and transformative potential of education means we can focus on outcomes specific to careers in addition to learning how to learn, and learning how to be an effective and able participant in society.  This is what Academica refers to as Education & Career Development: An Academic Mission for the 21st Century. Being able to hold these two seemingly opposing elements in mind at once is essential for future-proofing our society and economy. The reality is that these are not opposing elements at all, but rather the foundation for resilience.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Canada’s #1 Design School offering Executive Education and new Innovation Studio and SprintSpace

OCAD University is launching a new Executive Education program in a new Innovation Studio and SprintSpace.

The OCAD U Executive Education program features a flexible learning approach, enabling learners to accelerate learning and application into their workplace. We not only teach principles of art and design thinking as applied to business, we foster the application of these ideas into individual workplaces, amplifying the learning quotient of participants. We generate “sticky knowledge” to ensure that you can translate learning into practical outcomes for your workplace and career.

This new program received a generous gift from Scotiabank to create the Scotiabank Design Thinking Research Studio, a platform for a Design Thinking educational curriculum model that will generate research, workshops, executive education and an annual open public forum.

The Innovation Studio and SprintSpace is being built on Toronto's waterfront. The federal government recently announced SIF funding for OCADU's Campus for the Connected World (CCW), an exciting new space in the Daniels Waterfront — City of the Arts building complex. As outlined on our project page, the CCW will house initiatives specific to innovation training, design thinking, Big Data design and accelerator capacity that support commercialization and bring design skills to emergent companies.

The CCW space opens in early 2018, and the OCAD U Executive Education launches this spring.

The OCAD University Executive Education design brief

Please contact me if you would like more information or to become involved.