Imagination Conversation Report: The Meridian Institute, Indiana

Here’s another in our series of posts about previous Imagination Conversations. Over the course of the project, we’ve seen that a Conversation can be, among many other things, a great way to bring together a cross section of influential figures from a given state—people whose paths might not ordinarily intersect—to exchange imaginative ideas and reach conclusions that have statewide impact. The Indiana event I report on below was just such a unifying and action-oriented occasion. It may serve as an instructive model for anyone interested in using a Conversation as a rallying point for social or economic advancement at the state level.

The Imagine Indiana Leadership Summit, hosted by The Meridian Institute, happened on October 12 at the Indianapolis Museum of Art’s (IMA) Tobias Theater. Its objective was “to advance policy recommendations…to increase Indiana’s and America’s capacity for innovation” while highlighting culture’s role as a source of innovation. A steering committee made up of heads of state cultural, educational, and economic organizations—such as the Indiana Arts Commission and the Indy Partnership—prepared an action agenda over the course of six months. This agenda was presented, refined, and voted on at the well-attended gathering; the results are being delivered to key figures in the state for implementation. In addition to keynote presentations by Council on Competitiveness President and CEO Deborah Wince-Smith and IMA Director and CEO Maxwell Anderson, three panels—on culture, education, and economics, respectively—occurred during the day.

Meridian Institute President and CEO Dr. Scott Massey remarks, “Imagine Indiana engaged a cross section of the state’s top leadership, increased awareness of the importance of culture, and led to the creation of an innovation action agenda that can improve the state’s future.” Its many diverse recommendations include: depreciating Indiana students’ college tuition if they remain in the state to work there; using the alumni networks of Indiana universities to foster business alliances among former students; and including cultural leaders in Indiana’s economic and educational strategy organizations.

View the day’s proceedings on The Meridian Institute’s YouTube channel.

More Imagination Conversation Reports will appear soon!

Click here to view all Imagination Conversation Reports.

One Response

  1. […] and teacher development work, Executive Director Scott Noppe-Brandon has initiated a series of Imagination Conversations across the US.  Scott is a fluent and persuasive big ideas man: the arts, he says, need to be in […]

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