Innovation isn’t always in the grand ideas. Change-makers know the best ideas are often the smallest ones—rooted in local communities and organizations, and from community leaders and engaged citizens.
In 2016, we partnered with TEDMED, supporting the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), to generate new ways for making health a shared value. TEDMED attendees reimagined their own communities, submitting hundreds of ideas on how they could approach health through a community lens, from the ground up.
Inspiration stemmed from RWJF grantees who were recognized for implementing actionable innovations at the community level. Take the firefighters of Manchester, NH, who are tackling the opioid epidemic by repurposing fire stations as intake centers.
And RWJF’s work continues: Last month, they announced a program to employ human-centered design to create healthier communities, listening to real voices and addressing their needs. The lesson: If you want to effect meaningful change, start small.