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Wednesday, October 2 • 4:45pm - 6:00pm
From the Street to the Suite: How Institutions and Local Communities Can Become Allies

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This hybrid panel-discussion-activity session will explore how placemaking can drive equity within institutions, and will invite practitioners to assess their processes and how they can create work that impresses funders while supporting current residents of a place. We’ll showcase examples of our work done in partnership with local government, corporate real estate, and private foundations, examining how this work opened up conversations about equity within these institutions, driving policy change. Using lessons from our experience with the Civic Center Commons (SF Government), [freespace] and the Hall (private real estate), and 500 Plates (Knight Foundation), we’ll share how information collected at the street level was able to trickle upward and influence institutional change. Embedded in this is a conversation about how we, funded by institutions, and often coming into a community as outsiders - socially, racially, economically, and culturally - can be allies to the people in communities in which we work. How can we shift our projects and outcomes when the needs of the community differ from an original proposal? We will facilitate an honest discussion about bringing integrity and authenticity to our work, asking participants to contextualize their place when they find themselves as an outsider. We will engage in small group discussions about the successes and failures of activations, examining when the lasting impact of an initiative leads to more social and cultural equity, and when the absence of follow-through can have the opposite effect. We’ll also do an interactive exercise on listening and trust building, focusing on social equity within activations. We’ll then walk outside to conduct quickfire interviews with people on the street, experiencing ourselves as outsiders in a new place. We’ll collectively create a list of best practices for engagement based on our experience.

avatar for Cassie Hoeprich

Cassie Hoeprich

Master\'s Candidate, Urban and Regional Planning, University of California Los Angeles
avatar for Ilana Lipsett

Ilana Lipsett

Senior Program Manager, Institute for the Future
Ilana Lipsett is a community design strategist whose work uses participatory design and community engagement to inform future-focused policy, economic, and international development. Ilana works to create public engagement opportunities for cities, developers, NGO’s, and creative... Read More →

Hunter Franks

Founder, Hunter Franks Studio

Wednesday October 2, 2019 4:45pm - 6:00pm EDT
The Edney, Floor Five, Community Space