CENTRIM’s Paul Levy recently gave a talk at the Bevvy Community Pub in Brighton. as part of the Brains at the Bevvy series of talks organised by yhr University of Brighton.

Entitlted “The Power of Cafes as Places of Creativity”, the talk discussed CENTRIM research into informal meeting spaces as places to spark innovstion. This is based on a project called The Dial Project

Action Learning is a process developed by Reg Revans to support groups engaging in learning from taking action.  It is used on many different sectors and industries all over the world as a basis for teamwork. The process is one, which follows what is sometimes known as “the learning cycle”, where people reflect on their experience, leading to the development on new ideas and concepts, which are then tested out in practice.  It is used by successful organisations all over the world. You have a time slot in a group meeting and get to explore a chosen question, issue, problem or ongoing challenge. You can use your time slot to explore, and discuss and, before the end of your time slot you agree some action(s) you will take before the next action learning group meeting. At the next meeting you reflect on the learning and progress on your actions since the last meeting. The learning cycle is really a process of generating new ideas, experimenting, taking action and then reflecting on that action.

Cafe’s lend themselves to this process. They are informal buzzy and Paul’s research points to them as places that make idea sharing, challenge and motivation easier. All of this supports innovation and new ideas that can become value-creating business ideas.