Workshop 2011

The Business Done Differently Workshop took place June 6th 2011. The objective for this year’s workshop was to review where we are and to discuss the challenges of starting up this kind of research project. We wanted to reconnect, to share the challenges and successes that we experienced and to, perhaps, solve some of the problems that we were encountering.

Before the workshop, we asked the case study teams to tell us what they wanted to do with the day. The following graph shows the response to this question.

We also asked participants to rate some common challenges for discussion: finding time to do the research; organizational understanding of the research; staff participation; appropriate research tools for the employees of social businesses; how will academics and community partners use the research; what to do with negative findings and how will the research be presented? The challenges that were seen as very important to discuss were the eventual use of the research, negative findings, the manner of presenting the research and the appropriate research tool (see below).


Using the responses to the questionnaire, the workshop was organized to give brief updates about the various case studies and to facilitate discussion of the challenges encountered by the case studies. 

Agenda: Case Study Workshop Day


0900 - 0930


0930 - 0945

Welcome and Review

0945 - 1005

Case Study Updates I

A-Way Express Courier

River Restaurant

MiziweBiik Aboriginal Employment and Training

Toronto the Better

1005 - 1045

Issues in starting up case studies

1045 - 1100


1100 - 1115

Case Study Updates II

Academy of Computer & Employment Skills

Furniture Bank/Furniture Link

Alterna Credit Union

1115 - 1215


Vote on what issues will be highlighted for discussion in the afternoon

1215 - 1300


1300 - 1320

Case Study Updates III


Inspirations Studios

Northwood Translation Bureau

Atkinson Housing Co-operative

1320 -1400

Insights and Solutions

Small group workshops on insights and solutions

1400 - 1440

Insights and Solutions

Small group workshops on insights and solutions

1440 - 1500


1500 - 1515

Case Study Updates IV

Learning Enrichment Foundation

Common Ground Co-operative

Eva’s Print Shop

1515 - 1630

Large Group Discussion

What may be some solutions to the issues facing the case study teams? What supports are needed? Are there areas where we might collaborate? What might be examined across projects?

What are the next steps in the research project?

1630 - 1700

Wrap Up & evaluation


Dinner at the University of Toronto Faculty Club


*Notes* on the discussions that took place