The Social Impact Lab Alberta

Create change & improve the lives of Albertans.

The Social Impact Lab Alberta is an initiative that seeks to accelerate innovation and drive change in communities by building capacity and enabling cross-sector collation across the non-profit sector and beyond. After 4 years of traction in Calgary, The Social Impact Lab has been funded by the Government of Alberta, Creative Partnerships, to scale its offerings to non-profits and communities across Alberta. Our approach is grounded in human-centered design, and we work with individuals, groups, and organizations to design the future together.

The Social Impact Lab Alberta has established itself as a catalyst for inclusive and collaborative social impact initiatives. Through its strategic partnerships, capacity building programs such as Inspire, evidence-based Community Co-Design, and integration of non-profit practitioners and academic researchers, The SIL AB is setting the foundation to foster successful innovation, empowerment, and positive change in Alberta.

By bringing together stakeholders from various sectors through cross-sector workshops and exploring how to incorporate an Indigenous Elder-led oral system of innovation, The SIL AB exemplifies a holistic and inclusive approach to driving transformative change. Through these efforts, The Social Impact Lab Alberta continues to contribute to the betterment of communities across the province, strengthening the ecosystem of organizations working towards social good and leaving a profound positive impact on the lives of Albertans.

Made possible with funding from:

Our Initiatives


The human experience is at the core of everything we do. We gain insights from those directly impacted by a social issue, and we bring those insights into the Lab to inform a process of co-creation with people who have the means, knowledge, and influence to affect real change. Inspire is a program that equips individuals, organizations, and those collaborating at systems level with the tools, skillsets, and mindsets to practice design-thinking in their own context. We start with insights from those directly impacted by a social issue or who are facing an inequitable system. Then, we take participants through the human-centered design process and address the underlying cause of social issues in a collaborative and transformative manner. Lastly, we build concepts that are tested and iterated to find the sweet spot for change and to test viability for scaling. Our goal is to surface ideas and deliver innovative solutions to citizens and communities.

Community Co-Design

Based on research into successful organizations that have engaged in lasting community innovation work, the primary focus of community co-design has been shifting mindsets and building capacity in communities across Alberta.

The SIL AB’s model of Community Co-Design is the process of collaborating with local changemakers in rural and urban Alberta municipalities to support them in innovating and solving problems identified by the community. It uses proven methods to harness the strengths of the community to create social change that reflects their vision of the future. The aim of this approach is to empower community members to forge new relationships and adopt sustainable ways of working to identify and solve local problems.

Learn more


Inspire is a capacity building program for non-profit organizations that teaches design thinking as an approach to problem solving. In the age of acceleration, organizations are challenged to adapt to a rapidly changing world.

More about Inspire
Visit Inspire website

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