Bridge Partners with TN Arts Commission for Design Thinking Conference



Moving easily from global to local, public to private, and for-profit to non-profit, design thinking is an adaptable pathway to innovation that cuts across industry and sector. Alongside our corporate clients, Bridge Innovate® is committed to using innovation for good in our work with students and educators through Bright Spark™, as well as community impact programs using arts and culture to fuel vibrancy and growth with Thrive Regional Partnership.

Teaching others about how human-centered design can be a meaningful method for social change in arts and education excites us. For this reason, we are thrilled to partner with the Tennessee Arts Commission in the creation and delivery of design thinking training at the upcoming 2018 Tennessee Arts & Arts Education Conference taking place June 19-21 at Austin Peay State University Center of Excellence for the Creative Arts.   

Selected as featured speakers for the conference, the Bridge team joins an elite line-up of innovation experts including Dr. Natalie Nixon, a renowned design strategist and hybrid thinking guru, and Dan Goods, an award-winning design expert, visual strategist and innovationist for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Along with Natalie and Dan, Bridge will be presenting the overall design thinking educational component to all conference attendees.

Beyond leading sessions to help participants dig deeper with design thinking, the Bridge team will also present as subject matter experts in two additional specialty workshops:  


How to Build Creative Placemaking Momentum, Excitement, and Engagement by Using Small Scale Experiments to Test Ideas – Using the 2016 Thriving Communities program—an inspiring initiative introduced by Thrive Regional Partnership—as a case study, Bridge leaders, Tamara Gatchell and Tabitha Kapic will demonstrate how design thinking methods can empower communities to broaden their perspective about what is possible and then rapidly test ideas to build momentum, excitement and engagement. Session participants will experience rapid experimentation techniques that allow for simple, efficient and affordable exploration of ideas that can be applied in their own creative placemaking work.

Train the Trainer. Think Like a Designer: A Session for Educators – In this workshop, Bright Spark™ Director and resident Bridge design expert, Mary Kim, will guide participants in how to facilitate a creative design thinking session for students. The session aims to equip the participants with the design thinking methodology in a short-duration of time while encouraging creative confidence and skills for defining insights, brainstorming, and prototyping for students.


In addition to the 2018 Tennessee Arts & Arts Education Conference, the Bridge team was also selected to present at the 2018 Creative Placemaking Leadership Summit Southeast Conference earlier this spring. Joining a wide array of change champions, we presented sessions on how design thinking can empower communities to identify and implement creative solutions that utilize local arts and culture-based assets for economic growth and vibrancy.


Bridge team presenting at the 2018 Creative Placemaking Leadership Summit Southeast Conference.

Bridge team presenting at the 2018 Creative Placemaking Leadership Summit Southeast Conference.


There are many social innovation stories to tell, and we are excited for another chance to expand the network of like-minded influencers who are passionate about making the world a better place.

In early July, Bridge will be hosting a free webinar on how design thinking can be used to make a greater impact in community placemaking. We would love to have you join the discussion! Click the button below, and we’ll follow-up with more details as soon as registration opens.



Join us in the quest to change communities for good
through the power of innovation.