The GENERATOR | innovate | collaborate

Graduate Design Thesis by Courtney Walker

STATEMENT OF INTENT

Social connections are vital to our survival as a species, and today’s tools are making it easier than ever before to create connections, collaborate, and share and gather information and data. Technology has closed the gap between inspiration and action. It has allowed an explosion of new forms of collaboration and idea sharing as well as completely new literacies.

For the first time in history, we are seeing a younger generation that is more comfortable, knowledgeable and literate than the older generations with a tool so central to society. It is through the new communication tools and platforms—that have become so central in their lives—that they will develop and superimpose their collaborative culture on the rest of society.

They are the driving force to the social transformation of our largest industries that is on the horizon. These next generations grew up with new forms and levels of collaboration, and this is and will translate into the physical environment. A place that allows technology and humans to work in tandem to create brain gain will likely create innovation.

While the ease of access to others is now at our fingertips through the Internet and other communication devices, we are now seeing some of the negative effects as well. Creating a space that allows for individuals to come together and be able to have access to others faceto-face is vital. While the Internet has provided an exponential growth in the amount of collaboration and innovation that takes place, one also needs access to collaborators in the physical space.

We now also live in a world of constant communication. We are bombarded with different forms of it every hour and even every minute. The issue begins when one is faced with a problem—how does one use their communication tools to collaborate while still effectively taking the time to think critically. Creating a space that balances this idea of deep, inefficient but critical thinking with spontaneous collaboration is one that this research intends to address.

MISSION STATEMENT

The Generator sets out to create a space that allows individuals—young professional—to come together to collaborate, socialize, innovate, and think critically. Forming an alternative work and creative space that creates a community within the individuals as well as filtering into the surrounding neighborhood, in hopes of fueling an innovation multiplier.

DESIGN ISSUES + ATTITUDES

Cultivate a thriving community of innovation by balancing intimately integrated technological and restorative spaces, with the idea of providing the tools that compliment spontaneous collaboration and intimate social interactions while also providing moments of critical reflection and renewal. Create a dynamic space that provides random discoveries and opportunities—attracting patrons to constantly move through the space. This in turn cultivates knowledge sharing and innovation. Apply the ideal collaborative model used on the Internet and social media daily to a physical space by integrating a variety of collaboration, work and amenity areas that attract not only members but the community at large—expanding the scope and scale of the idea sharing occurring at the Generator.

CLIENT PROFILE: YiP

The Generator sets out to create a space that allows individuals—young professional—to come together to collaborate, socialize, innovate, and think critically. Forming an alternative work and creative space that creates a community within the individuals as well as filtering into the surrounding neighborhood, in hopes of fueling an innovation multiplier.

(YiP) mission statement

In late 2000, a small group of recent college graduates set out to harness the energy and enthusiasm of young Philadelphians in shaping the future of the city, creating the organization known as Young Involved Philadelphia (YiP). Today, the organization boasts more than 6,000 members and has built a reputation as Philadelphia’s leading organization of young citizens. YiP builds relationships and increases civic engagement to empower and connect young Philadelphians. The organization is now looking to expand their concept and create a physical space for the company—to include a young professionals club. They decided to create a private place where they could go to collaborate and hang out with like-minded people. Their concept is modeled from a blend of the ideas behind Union Leagues, and newer spaces like coworking facilities and private clubs in tandem with the concepts behind BarCamp and YiP. They want to produce an atmosphere that breeds a new form of collaboration and creativity—to produce a space that individuals can come to work and meet together.

In the spirit of their current goals, they plan to take the concept of the club and workplace a step further. They want to create a larger community that extends beyond the club members. They want to craft a space that allows club members to sponsor open forums as well as giving back to the community by providing a space to hold public lectures and talks. Collaboration and idea sharing is great between the individuals of the club. But the group wants to take the idea of collaboration and innovation a step further by including spaces where the club members can open up their ideas to the community to collaborate on a larger scale, in hopes of creating an innovation multiplier.

 

 

 

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