Innovation spaces, youth, social inclusion, public libraries: The podcast

I have all these great conversations with Silvia Caicedo. We debate, help each other, work out ideas. She’s amazing. Finally I decided to record one of our talks and make it into the first Facilitating Change Podcast (yipeee!!!!!!!).

There’s a too-long intro about innovation spaces. Sorry. Trying to set the context. The good stuff (i.e., Silvia) starts at around 11:47. It’s messy, it’s part of working open, and we’re thrilled to share it with you.


Speaking about at-risk youth, Silvia invites us to re-think both the location and reach of public libraries. Her example — Cuetamelo Todo in Ibarra, Ecuador — shows how librarians can work with the community to re-claim public spaces, such as parks (at night!), extending “safe space” beyond the library’s walls for a more inclusive social development.

…the libraries have been located in neighborhoods that are usually not thought of as having a library — or even deserving a library. It would invite a rethink of spaces where libraries can exist that are necessarily always strictly a vehicle for the delivery of a technology — like a book — but rather a space for social innovation where you reach out to bring kids into the social fold in a positive manner.

The project is run by Desarrollo Social & Habitat, an Ecuadorian NGO, with financial support from Belgium and in partnership with the local community leaders, Universidad Técnica del Norte, the local municipal government, and Fe Y Alegría. Learn more »