We’re said to be currently living in the Urban Millennium, with the world reaching a tipping point of more urban than rural inhabitants. This raises some important questions, not least how we choose to live together. The GeniUS! process has addressed the need for innovation in how we design and deliver city services and in how we engage with our residents.
The GeniUS! approach has its basis in unlocking the physical assets, knowledge capital and creative potential within the city. There is a vast talent base on our doorstep and anyone can be part of finding new and sustainable solutions to a city’s challenges.
Our project will transfer the GeniUS! process to each of our three partner cities. Each partner city will launch it’s own online collaboration platform and will use our open innovation approach to develop solutions to a challenge that is currently facing their city.The partner cities have a range of cultures and local practices, with a varied amount of existing social innovation practice. This will allow the practice transfer to be tested in three new and differing environments thus allowing a strong evaluation of the suitability of the current process for different circumstances.The City of York has a legacy of social innovation throughout its history and we believe that this remains key to securing the future prosperity of the city. This cannot be achieved effectively in isolation. We are already using Open Innovation to engage a wider range of people to create more potential to achieve great things. Expanding this to include the URBACT city network is the next step on the journey. York’s open innovation approach is now a systematic solution for solving challenges and engaging residents, communities, companies and academics in that process. We hope that our three partners will benefit from the transfer of the GeniUS! process to their cities.
Throughout the project, we will review and refine the model and the transfer process, in order to make it as suitable as possible for a range of cities, within Europe and beyond. We hope that the URBACT network will benefit from what we learn about the conditions needed for successful transfer of practice from one city to another. In sharing the GeniUS! process with others, the practice will be strengthened and improved, which will also bring benefits for York and it’s residents.