This time last year, only a few people had experienced or even heard of U.Lab. To kick start it, Kenneth Hogg, Director of Local Government and Communities in the Scottish Government sent an invitation to some people who we thought might be interested in finding out more about it.
Fast forward to today and we are in a very different place and this is reflected in Kenneth’s invitation this year. We would like to share and extend the invitation to others to join in. You might want to share this post/invitation, or write your own to interested friends and colleagues. Here’s this year invitation from Kenneth (and if you would like to, please share your own invitations with us!):
I am writing to invite you to take part in U.Lab Scotland. Preparations are now getting under way for the programme which begins in September 2016. I’d be really grateful if you would spread this invitation widely amongst your networks – the more participants the better. In particular, I’d like to highlight the U.Lab taster sessions being run across Scotland in May and June – details below.
U Lab is one of the most exciting change initiatives I have been involved with, and got off to a flying start in Scotland in 2015. U.Lab is a global programme run by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). We have worked with MIT to use U.Lab in Scotland as a public participation and learning platform which supports people and communities to lead change about things they care about. U.Lab connects people with each other – across Scotland and internationally – and provides access to world-leading learning about change. It’s free, and open to anyone to take part.
Last year, over 900 people across Scotland took part in U.Lab, from a wide variety of sectors and backgrounds: public, private and third sectors. Some participants focussed on personal changes they wanted to make. Others used the experience to create and develop new projects to improve community or business outcomes. And over 70 peer-support groups came together to support participants all over Scotland. The key principle underlying U.Lab is that you explore what is important to you, explore future possibilities, and then turn ideas into action.
There are a number of ways to find out more about U.Lab Scotland. You can get more information here www.ulabscot.wordpress.com – including blog posts and videos of people in Scotland speaking about their own U.Lab experiences. You may like to check out #ulabscot twitter feed and join the U.Lab Scotland group on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/862257053829332/ And this short film gives a flavour of one of the national preparatory events in 2015 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N9zshUznWto
U.Lab will run again this year – an 8 week programme – starting in September. You can find out more about the global U.Lab programme itself here https://www.presencing.com/ulab/overview U.Lab will open for registration in the weeks ahead, but to give people a flavour of what they can expect a number of those who participated in 2015 in Scotland are offering ‘taster’ sessions during May and June. (The first is in Glasgow this Friday, 13th May.) You can see the full list of taster events and you can sign up here: http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/ulab-scotland-10483928357
Please feel free to forward this invitation on to anyone who may be interested: this is open to anyone interested in exploring change. And Keira Oliver is happy to answer any queries (Keira.Oliver@gov.scot (0131 244 4943)).
I very much hope you’ll join us in this hugely exciting journey.
Director for Local Government and Communities