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The A-Lab process has generated plenty of measurable impact.

When it comes to innovation, don't just make an impact. Measure it

Can you measure impact from social innovation labs?

Over the past two years we have been working with the Australian Renewable Energy Agency to create and deliver a social innovation lab - A-Lab, targeted at generating systemic innovations to increase the rate of renewable energy adoption across Australia.

But that's not all we've been doing. We have tracked every workshop, every activity, and importantly the projects generated and the new partnerships and knowledge that have resulted from the entire energy value chain coming together to innovate.

Our co-design partner on the project, ARENA, has issued THIS REPORT.

It contains some pretty inspiring numbers that show the ThinkPlace methodology having a real and lasting impact in this very important area.

We've brought together participants from 18 different industry sectors, including Government, service providers and universities.

And that has already led to the creation of 25 projects, which are driving meaningful change as Australia and the world move towards a renewable energy system that is crucial to our future as a planet.

The process of bringing people together to co-design and innovate has already spawned, 243 project ideas, 14 of which have been iuncubated and developed to the point where they have been selected for funding by ARENA.

A total of $36.4 million of funding has been allocated to those projects.

These numbers show the impact of A-Lab.
It's important to measure the impact of all co-design processes, including innovation labs. That's how we know our methodology works.

These include a project with energy retailer AGL to trial peer to peer energy trading - an innovative and exciting window into where household energy production and consumption is heading, as well as deX, a prototype maketplace in which households can access new sources of value for the energy resources they can now produce through emerging technologies like rooftop solar and battery storage.

"deX has the potential to have a profound effect on the sector," the ARENA report says.

Innovation and co-design are central to what we do at ThinkPlace but the idea of impact, and of measurability, are just as crucial. By monitoring the progress of our work and focusing on analysing and sharing lessons learned we make sure that our work is doing what it sets out to do.

And that means making a real and lasting change for the better.

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Nina Terrey

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