The Unusual Suspects Festival is coming to NI

The Unusual Suspects Festival is coming to NI

10 May 2016

The Building Change Trust is excited to announce, as part of our commitment to Social Innovation, that we are bringing an exciting new festival to Northern Ireland that will bring together practitioners from across the UK, Ireland and elsewhere.

The Unusual Suspects Festival is organised by the global learning network Social Innovation eXchange (SIX) and has been run twice previously in London in 2014 and Glasgow in 2015. The Trust brought a group of NI-based practitioners to the Glasgow festival and following on from that positive experience we engaged with SIX in discussions about the festival taking place in NI in 2016.

The Unusual Suspects Festival will be held over three days in Derry-Londonderry and Belfast from October 12-14 2016.

The Festival brings people together who would not usually work together, facilitating serendipity between organisations and people who would otherwise remain unconnected.

It provides a catalyst for real social change. You can expect three days of ideas, solutions and debate all exploring what happens when social innovation meets collaboration and how together we can meet some of society's most pressing challenges.

The Festival also provides an ideal opportunity to create a ‘shop window’ for all the socially innovative work happening across Northern Ireland in all sectors.

The Trust and its co-collaborators will be using the festival as a platform to launch the delivery of Social Innovation NI.

The Trust has committed funding support to the festival and will be working closely with SIX, to design and deliver an exciting programme of events.

Paul Braithwaite, who heads up the Trust’s work in Social Innovation, said: “We’re delighted to announce we’ll be involved in the first Unusual Suspects Festival to come to this side of the Irish Sea.

“In these times of uncertainty and change we think social innovation is both a great opportunity and an absolute necessity for the Northern Ireland Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise Sector to concentrate on and we feel this festival will be a great way to encourage, connect and give people a place to share ideas and collaborate.

“As the Trust looks towards its legacy beyond 2018, we hope work like this will help to embed social innovation as the ‘new normal’ way of devising and delivering solutions to social challenges in the VCSE sector and beyond”.

We are looking for hosts, collaborators and unusual suspects! Get involved by  messaging

More information will be available soon. Sign up to the SIX Newsletter to be the first to know about the programme and tickets.