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UIX Q&A: Melinda Anderson, Detroit Design Festival

Detroit Creative Corridor Center Events Director Melinda Anderson reflects on the evolution of this year's Detroit Design Festival and how much it has already grown and evolved from its first year in 2011. Signature events like Eastern Market After Dark, a record-breaking hopscotch and countless design community partnerships were key to this year's success and will enable the festival to continue to grow from one year to the next.

Warming up to green energy

Thanks to the Recovery Act, a few local programs are recruiting unemployed residents, training them with sustainable construction skills and then helping them find work; all for free. Amelia Kanan reports with words and pictures.

Fashion & Technology: Could industry cross-breeding become Detroitís future?

Detroit is seeing a new wave of creative startups, and fashion is one industry on the rise. Recently, more capital has been made available to technology companies, aiming to turn Detroit into a “Silicon Valley of the Midwest." If, as they say, 90% of fashion is marketing, and social media use is at a high, shouldn’t apparel businesses be considered an investment opportunity in Detroit’s creative economy? What ways can we extend these tech startup incentives to multiple industries?

Moving Forward with Joey Landis

In the Motor City, photographer Noah Stephens travels by bicycle. On his latest journey, he meets up with fellow cyclist Joey Landis, co-founder of bike messenger service Rock Dove Couriers. Joey is part of a new wave of Detroiters finding entrepreneurial opportunity on two wheels. (Photo essay from The People of Detroit for UIX.)

Getting Smarter: Innovators gather for learning exchange at D:hive

The "hive" was buzzing with ambitious doers leading everything from youth programs to community art projects to startup businesses and micro-lending programs. They came to learn about urban innovation in Detroit, and they left with some new strategies for leadership and social entrepreneurship from special guest Christopher Gergen. Check out our recap & video.

Innovation in Action: Allied Media Projects

Working out of the Furniture Factory in the Cass Corridor, Allied Media Projects is all about innovation, interaction and collaboration. Matthew Piper takes us behind the scenes.

Crossing Paths with Kyle Bartell

Photographer Noah Stephens goes out in search of innovation and crosses paths (more than once) with a young Detroiter on a mission to transform unused parcels into parks. Meet Kyle Bartell, who has a vision to create more public gathering spaces in places where trails are already being blazed. (Photo essay from The People of Detroit for UIX.)

Let's Get Innovative: How Can Detroit Do More with Less?

As demands on the world’s non-renewable and limited resources increase, how can Detroit be a lead innovator in the practice of doing more with less? Rachel Klegon, Executive Director of Green Living Science, shares her thinking on how we can all contribute to being a more efficient and effective community. Read here, then join the conversation.

It's OK to FAIL: How can we celebrate failure as part of innovation?

You’re going to fail...and that's great! If you're out there innovating and DOING things - trying to add value, generate opportunity, hire employees, build communities, develop talent, create wealth or start something new to move Detroit forward - you're not going to succeed every time. So how do we turn failure into a badge of honor rather than a mark of shame?

Call for Ideas: Innovative ways to fund small-scale community projects?

Detroit has very active foundations and corporations that invest millions of dollars in our community. Usually these funds are directed toward larger, established civic institutions and non-profit organizations with a demonstrated record of impact and success. But what if you have a new, untested idea to address a neighborhood need? How can we create more funding opportunities for smaller-scale but potentially transformative community projects?

Let's Get Innovative: Tactical Urbanism?

Who doesn't love a "design on a dime" makeover show? You know the ones, where a homeowner is given an impossible budget and deadline to totally transform a space, then through sheer creativity and resourcefulness (and maybe some clever editing), the place comes to life - huzzah! Well, the same is possible with public spaces. Urban designer-types call this "tactical urbanism." What they really mean is activating places quickly & cheaply. How can we do more of this in Detroit?
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