On Wednesday, April 10th, 2013, a number of librarians, library assistants, and SLAIS students from UBC, SFU and various public libraries gathered at UBC to participate in Innovation Boot Camp. Innovation Boot Camp is a unique program created by M.J. D’Elia and Robin Bergart, librarians at the University of Guelph who were curious about, and decided to investigate, the nature of innovation. They sought to answer the following questions:
Can innovation be intentionally learned? Can innovation be cultivated? Can anyone learn to be innovative in a supportive environment? As a participant at this workshop, I would answer all three of these questions with an emphatic and enthusiastic yes!
M.J. did an outstanding job of introducing the program, its history and our goals for the day. He acknowledged that some people may be feeling nervous or shy and encouraged us to be open to the experiences we’d share throughout the day. From the very first activity to the very last, we were actively engaged in the ideas and processes of innovation and creative thinking. Participants were exposed to stimulating and inventive instructional activities that encouraged them to: collaborate, take risks, identify problems, frame problems, generate ideas by thinking laterally, challenge their assumptions, evaluate the quality of ideas and improve ideas.
The workshop was an overwhelming success, partly because the participants were enthusiastic and optimistic about their learning goals, and partly because M.J. is an outstanding facilitator who helped us stay committed to thinking outside the box!
Thank you to ALPS, IKBLC, UBC HR and UBC FA-LAC for co-sponsoring the event.