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Our Approach

Global MINDS offers three streams of learning and development opportunities for students from multiple disciplines and at different stages of training. The processes, conditions and tools supporting disruptive innovation will be layered into each of the three streams and will be drawn from social innovation lab and social entrepreneurship models. 

Social Innovation Lab

A Social Innovation Lab (SIL) strategically brings people together at a time when persistent problems, disruptive changes or a crisis demand: 1) sense-making (understanding what is happening and why) which in turn infuses a situation with meaning and the motivation to act; 2) identifying the new emerging patterns, programs, initiatives, ideas that could transform the problem domain; and 3) identifying the opportunities to shape or influence new partnerships, resource flows and protocols that could support such transformation (Westley and Laban, 2015).  The SIL model combines social (diverse participants acting collaboratively), experimental (iterative process of developing strategy and actions) and systemic (addressing root causes, focused on systems change not quick fix) elements. Its tools will include design thinking (ethnographic research, prototyping), systems thinking (systems mapping, systems and group dynamics, scaling) and ones derived from other relevant fields (e.g., change management, social movement theory).

Social Entrepreneurship

Social entrepreneurship involves applying practical, innovative and sustainable approaches that cut across sectors and disciplines to benefit society in general, with an emphasis on those who are marginalized. It is proposed that the key attributes of social entrepreneurship as applied to addressing mental health inequities are 1) Highly innovative – address mental health (broadly defined) in ways that represent new approaches to care; 2) Sustainable – the innovative approach can be successfully implemented and demonstrate sustainability fiscally and otherwise; 3) Reach and transferable – the approach can meaningfully engage the communities (to be) served and represents a model that could be implemented in other jurisdictions and at other times; and  4) Effective and Resourceful – the individuals involved readily take advantage of opportunities to expand their work and demonstrate a strong capacity to persevere despite few resources and other forms of adversity (Kidd et al., 2016).

Each Global MINDS stream will also cover the following core content:

  1. Overview of global mental health: the gap between the prevalence of mental disorders and provision of treatment, the underlying complexities of risk and resilience, social determinants, issues related to stigma and human rights, and the tensions within field.

  2. Various approaches and methods of conceptualizing and measuring burden of mental disorders.

  3. Defining and mapping the activities and boundaries of a “mental health system”.

  4. The need for transdisciplinary, cross-sectoral and cultural humility approaches in the innovation and change processes.

  5. Contemporary and novel definitions of impact, outcomes, and measurement.

  6. Knowledge mobilization frameworks and strategies to maximize the impacts of their innovation

  7. The drivers and barriers to scale, including policy change and building capacity, and the need to approach scaling as a complex challenge.