Incubating Civic Leadership

Incubating Civic Leadership (ICL) is a knowledge exchange project, funded through Research England’s Higher Education Innovation Fund (HEIF) allocation to the Open University. ICL is a collaboration between the Open University, The Glass-House Community Led Design and Knowle West Media Centre. The aim of the project is to develop and test a model for the operation of a Civic Leadership Incubator that will help inform, inspire, and catalyse people and organisations to work together and to convert ideas and conversations into collaborative, interdisciplinary and cross-sector projects. 

As part of project activities, the ICL team works with other partners in two pilot local projects: London Borough of Redbridge and Muslimah Sports Association in East London, and the Filwood Broadway Working Group of the Knowle West Alliance in Bristol.


The Open University
The leading expert in flexible higher education learning underpinned by world-leading research.

Dr Theo Zamenopoulos (Principal Investigator)
Expertise: participatory design research and socio-psychological processes of design thinking

Dr Katerina Alexiou (Co-Investigator)
Expertise: methods to support community-led design, creative citizenship

Prof. Alessandro Sancino (Co-Investigator)
Expertise: public leadership and social enterprise

Dr Carol Jacklin-Jarvis (Co-Investigator)
Expertise: voluntary sector leadership and collaboration

Gabi Kent (Co-Investigator)
Expertise: digital storytelling and community action

Vera Hale (Research Associate)
Expertise: community-led design, sustainable design

The Glass-House Community Led Design
A national charity that supports communities, organisations and networks to work collaboratively on the design of places.

Sophia de Sousa, Chief Executive
Elly Mead, Design Champion
Deborah Ajie, Communications & Storytelling

Knowle West Media Centre
An arts centre and charity based in South Bristol.

Lorraine Hudson, Living Lab Manager