EMPATHY LAB: columbia dsl x refinery29
What if we could build a bomb that would spread compassion and understanding, instead of destruction?
The Empathy Lab was a collaborative initiative between the Columbia University School of the Arts' Digital Storytelling Lab and Refinery29, based on the belief that empathy can scale. Doing well by doing good is proven to be good business. The Empathy Lab went one step further.
Our model of Purpose-Driven Partnership reimagines the value proposition attached to strategic partnerships as about more than simply increasing revenue. Addressing pressing global challenges is not only important work for the sake of humanity, it's also a necessary way to mitigate the very real risks attached to issues like social injustice, political disenfranchisement and polarization, and climate change.
By bringing together media companies, academia, and a group of cross-disciplinary changemakers, we devised a new partnership model based a transparent and mutual value proposition. Each stakeholder contributed based on their individual core competences, such as political organizing, social innovation, storytelling, financial resources, and media distribution.
The Empathy Lab examines and accelerates the role of empathy across a wide range of disciplines, including: policy, education, media, design, technology and healthcare. Its mission is:
To examine and accelerate the role of empathy across a wide range of disciplines, including: policy, education, media, design, technology and healthcare
To explore synergies in funding, impact, and scale between brands and social innovation initiatives – to devise a new way to measure engagement and impact, and create a model of Purpose-Driven Partnership
CULTURE OF UNDERSTANDING
To recognize and deploy empathy as an essential factor in designing and sharing a culture that promotes understanding, both within organizations and in the world at large