About Big Bold Ideas
Concept: Big Bold Ideas is a community-wide goal-setting and goal-accomplishing venture.
Mission: To make a substantial, positive, and collective impact on our community.
Steering Committee: The Big Bold Ideas Steering Committee is made up of forty community leaders from diverse backgrounds and all sectors who are working together to shape and guide this powerful community improvement initiative. Members include Mayors and business owners, community activists and artists, and civic and social leaders.
Process: In 2019, the Big Bold Ideas Steering Committee galvanized the community around three big bold ideas. In 2020, the Steering Committee is leading the implementation of the three ideas in alignment with the conditions of Collective Impact (common agenda, shared measurement systems, mutually reinforcing activities, continuous communication, and a backbone support organization). Done well, the three ideas will become a focused and strategic action plan that guides the shared work in the years ahead.
Progress: See timeline below and follow the conversations with #BigBoldIdeas and on YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook.
Inspiration: The inspiration for Big Bold Ideas is from the "Big 5 Initiatives" in Kansas City, where the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce launched and continues to lead a similar process for their region. Their inaugural five big ideas were: 1) Make Kansas City America’s most entrepreneurial city; 2) Create a regional translational medical research institute; 3) Build on the existing “animal health corridor” by holding a world symposium on animal health; 4) Move UMKC’s Conservatory of Music and Dance from the main campus to downtown Kansas City; and 5) Pinpoint an urban core redevelopment project in Kansas City to improve housing, employment, and crime statistics.
Contact: For questions, contact The Chamber at (919) 967-7075 or Chamber Vice President, Katie Loovis at (919) 696-0781 (cell) or KLoovis@CarolinaChamber.org.
This multi-year initiative is unfolding through four phases:
Phase I - Build Support
On February 1, 2019, the Big Bold Ideas concept was introduced during The Chamber’s Annual Meeting and, over the next eight months, a diverse and influential Steering Committee was established and funding partners were secured. (Read the release)
Phase II - Solicit Ideas
On Thursday, September 19, 2019, in conjunction with The Chamber’s State of the Community Report, the Steering Committee was introduced and the community-wide call for ideas was issued. (Read the release)
For three weeks, the Committee actively solicited ideas in five languages (English, Spanish, Mandarin, Karen, and Burmese) across seven channels: web (www.BigBoldIdeas.org), text (919-525-1395), email and e-newsletters, social media (#BigBoldIdeas on facebook, twitter, instagram, youtube), on-air (WCHL), in print (full-page Chapel Hill Magazine ad), and in-person (Big Bold Idea Boxes at libraries). 450+ ideas were submitted across 12 categories during this active solicitation period.
Phase III - Sort & Select Ideas
On Monday, October 21, 2019, the Steering Committee invited the community to 1) crowd-sort the ideas and 2) register as a Community Convention Delegate to help select the three Big Bold Ideas. (Read the release)
To sort the ideas, a simple “wiki survey” platform, called AllOurIdeas.com, was used, and its democratic, open, and efficient process allowed for the most popular ideas to bubble towards the top. Community members were permitted to vote as often as they liked, stop at any point, and view real-time results over the nearly two-week sorting period, which ended on Thursday, October 31, 2019. Additional ideas were submitted through the sorting process, taking the total number to 500+ ideas!
For selecting the three Big Bold Ideas, 175 Delegates participate in the Community Convention on November 7, 2019. The convention, hosted by the Steering Committee, was held in the Friends and Family Hall of St. Thomas More in Chapel Hill from 1-5pm with expert facilitation from Zemo Trevathan of The Aligned Team. Invited delegates include all Steering Committee members and their nominees as well as all elected officials in Orange County and all self-nominated community members.
The Community Convention culminated selected and united around three big bold ideas: 1) Create dramatically more affordable housing; 2) Increase all students’ performance and close the achievement gap, and 3) Accelerate innovation and workforce development. (Read the release)
Phase IV - The Big Bold Way Forward
Since the Community Convention on November 7, 2019, the Steering Committee is researching each idea and identifying sub-committee members and funders for the long-term work ahead. The progress was discussed at The Chamber’s Annual Meeting on January 31, 2020 and continues to unfold.