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Tonya Surman's blog

Canada’s ‘innovation agenda’ isn’t just tech – it’s social

By Tonya Surman and Victoria Lennox

Published in the Globe and Mail, May 4, 2016

Profound Learnings from the Indigenous Innovation Summit

I am Canadian. My family arrived in this country as far back as the 1600's in Moncton, NB. My Acadian roots were interwoven with Russian-Ukrainian's of northern Saskatchewan and somewhere in there, there are rumours of a Cree mother. My parents met in Marathon, Ontario, but I was raised in Toronto and pride myself on being a latte drinking, cycling, urbanist with a business-savvy social justice twist.

We’re at it again! CSI is buying a new building in Downtown Toronto!

The Centre for Social Innovation has just ‘gone firm’ on the purchase of 192 Spadina! This spectacular 64,000 square foot brick and beam building was built in 1920 and is known as the Murray Building. Formerly a printing company, with a stint in the garment industry, the Murray Building currently houses about 60 new media, arts, urban and other small businesses.

Building Social Entrepreneurship through the Power of Coworking

By: Tonya Surman - CEO, Centre for Social Innovation
Published in: Innovations, Volume 8, Issue 3/4, 

Capital for you to change the world!

At CSI, we believe that new innovations are the key to turning the environmental, social, cultural and economic challenges we face into opportunities to improve our communities and our planet. We know that early stage social ventures often struggle to raise capital to test and scale their ideas. Well, we’re all about solutions, and we don’t like excuses! That’s why I am so pleased that we were able to announce the launch of the $600K Ontario Catapult Microloan Fund.

CSI has a new hero! A hacker! A preacher! ... A Director of Culture

Culture is the glue that holds our shared workspace together and the air that breathes vitality into the lives of everyone who moves through it. The Centre for Social Innovation is an amazing shared workspace with a palpable vibrancy that everyone who enters feels. We have built a culture of collaboration, entrepreneurship and solutions for a better world. We are proud of how far we have come, but we know that we can do better.

When you succeed, the world succeeds

Happy New Year!

So here is the thing! After nearly 9 years of pushing the social innovation agenda, toiling to define social enterprise, pushing policy, and challenging the sector to think outside the box, they are finally catching up with us!

With open arms in Regent Park

This week, the Centre for Social Innovation opened its third location in the new Regent Park Arts & Cultural Centre at 585 Dundas St. East. This is an exciting step for CSI as we dig deeply into our exploration of how shared spaces for social innovation can contribute to the revitalization of a neighbourhood.

CSI Starrett-Lehigh: Why New York? Why Now?

It’s true. CSI is, indeed, opening our 4th location in NYC this winter. We are excited, humbled and focused. I believe this is a tremendous opportunity for CSI and our community, but I’m sure many of you would like to know why New York and why now?

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