Opening up ILW – Changes to 2016


Through our Open ILW project, we have worked with you to redesign and rethinking innovation, learning, and a University-wide events programme. We wanted to share some of the improvements for the upcoming year.

If you are interested in running an ILW event in 2016 – read more here.


Manifesto: We are nearly done writing the manifesto based on research and input from partners.  You can read the draft document here. This will contribute to the wider strategy which includes impact and key performance indicators.

School Coordinator Role: ILW has an amazing network of School Coordinators and we are improving the communications and support structure to help them.  We’ve created a role description for them and sharing the Coordinator Directory more widely so they are the first point of contact for collaboration and support.  Not all Schools have coordinators, however.

We have also added other University service contacts to this directory to assist with collaborations as they come up.

Year-Round Focus: Innovation doesn’t happen in one week so we are focusing our work on supporting ideas from their start to delivery and past ILW. This includes pop-up festivals, monthly ILW Meet-Ups, an ongoing online community, and activity after the festival.


Pop up events: We are expanding the events programme to include pop-up events throughout the year. The idea of a pop-up is popular these days! Temporary shops and restaurants were once a way for artists to subvert empty urban spaces.  We want to invite innovation to happen in any space, event, with whatever group of people to explore and experiment with creative learning. These could take over hours, days, or weeks.  Have an idea for a pop-up event or already planning one? Email us at

We will be trying to do a lot of these on Wednesday afternoons. The community of practice Ed2020 meets every other Wednesday morning, our ILW-Meet Ups will take place one Wednesday a month, and we have a couple few events up our sleeves.  Want in? Email us at

You can sign up for ILW Meet-ups here.

Curated Festival programme: The Festival programme will be more curated this year which means events WILL NEED TO APPLY to get into the programme.  This application will include requests for funding + ideas (venues, times need not be confirmed) much earlier than in the past. Non-funded events can still make it into the programme if they fit the criteria.

Please note that for those that don’t make it into the Festival programme – we will do our best to sign post other opportunities to ensure they are still supported, even if they don’t get into ILW. 

Focus on open collaborative events: We will be supporting events which are collaborative between different partners and are open to all students. 

Learning Outcomes: We are including a section in the Festival Application on learning outcomes to make this a closer connection to the learning experience.

ThemeFor this year’s Innovative Learning Week, we are curating the programme around the theme Ideas in Play. We purposely have made the theme abstract and open to interpretation – we want it to be broad enough to leave room for a wide-range of activities but invite diverse interpretations.  Ideas in Play invites students, staff, and other partners of the University to start, make, build, design, try, and act upon your ideas.  Play represents the fun but also the value of the process of innovation. Failure and risk are an important part of play and we embrace them through the ILW programme of activities.  ILW is just part of the process.

Updated Calendar: We are currently working with the Learning, Technology, Web Team to further improve the Events Calendar from last year.  We will continue to use the same system as last year but with improvements.

Awards: We are introducing an Awards scheme for events, organisers, School coordinators, etc. 


ILW Handbook: We are creating a very comprehensive ILW Handbook with key dates, deadlines, and information on how to design and develop a great event. This will be available in physical and digital forms and available in September.

Basecamp replaces Wiki: Based on feedback, we not be using the Wiki anymore.  Instead we will be using user-friendly Basecamp which is more interactive and allows us to share information in a more dynamic way. If you are interested in running an event, you can sign up here and will add you to the Basecamp.

ILW Meet-Ups: We want to create more opportunities to build community around innovation and the events programme. We are facilitating monthly meet-ups to create more of a community around ideation and delivery. These will take place on Wednesdays. Meet-up topics will include event ideas, event design, logistics, impact/legacy, promotion, and a follow up on what’s next. Sign up here for the ILW Meet-ups here.


Improved application form: The Funding Application will be rolled into one Festival Application to be on the programme. Based on your feedback, we have made the funding process better with clearer guidelines, one application form, and a clearer & communicated process between the Schools and central team. Application form will include risk assessment.

Focus on kickstart money: The amount will be less money (up to £300) will focus on kickstarting more activities.

Earlier deadline: We will accept all applications into the programme which includes funding requests on 4 November and the applications won’t require venue, times, etc just yet.

School input in funding: Festival Applications will be accepted centrally and we will liaise with School Coordinators to identify the best for the programme. We will include a tick box on the application asking them if they have spoken with their School Coordinator and advertise your position better as well.

Funding available AFTER festival: We will be providing funding and support for events after the festival to help scale up good practice.

Lots of changes, but we are positive that we will learn a great deal through the changes we are making.


2 responses to “Opening up ILW – Changes to 2016

  1. Pingback: Interested in running an ILW event? | Innovative Learning Week at University of Edinburgh·

  2. Pingback: Interested in running an ILW 2016 event? | Innovative Learning Week at University of Edinburgh·

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