• What’s Your Sa.Ga?

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    The last post in this series of 4 focuses on the question of openness and outreach for a Savannah-based  hub for economic development that embodies environmental, social and cultural sustainability. A team of 4 students in the previous Sustainable Practices in Design class—Nicole Andrews, Jerome Elder, Liz Lukken and Santiago Castillo—focused on this particular question:

    3: What methods of outreach could be applied to increase awareness, participation, and excitement in the hub’s endeavor?

    Following the principles of Enterprise Facilitation, Human-Centered Design, Asset Based Community Development, and others, our team recognized that any long-lasting and equitable strategy for growing a vibrant economy required informed and empowered citizens.

    What better way to invest the community than to ask them to tell their own stories, and what better way to ask them to do that than to remind them that every person’s journey through this world is precious, rich in detail, compelling, informative, and worthy of reflection. Every human journey is a saga worth sharing.

    Thus, the SA.GA. storytelling campaign was born. The team focused on creating ways to facilitate the telling of personal sagas; not only tales of a life’s journey, but tales that help others understand those individual realities on their own terms and in the greater context of our social whole. What is YOUR Savannah, GA: the Savannah you love, the Savannah you live, each and every day? We share a common history that overlaps more than we understand, yet we can’t comprehend this unless there are vehicles for sharing our histories.

    This team worked through numerous storytelling vehicles:

    SAGA STORIES: A recurring storytelling event, like TEDx, that gives people from all corners of Savannah an opportunity to tell their stories.

    SAGA VIRAL: Social media networks that give day-to-day stories of many individuals a broader context.

    SAGA SWAGGER: Let’s seek out those individuals in Savannah that are doing amazing things, and give them a pat on the back. Let’s recognize them for their efforts in helping other Savannahians tell their stories, change their stories, or guide the unfolding stories of others.

    SAGA STARTER: Sure there are many other crowd funding vehicles, but why not one where Savannahians can find someone in their very own community who they can support?

    SAGA BUCKS: New and exciting forms of local currency are popping up all over the globe as a means of helping local businesses keep more revenue within their own communities. Is there a way to make this work right here in Savannah?

    Perhaps none of these ideas are original, but that’s the good news: that means they are effective if the right conditions are cultivated. And this teams of designers was hoping to find a meaningful way to create a concentrated form of storytelling within the Savannah community that could unify many voices.

    The ownership for these ideas are intended to be co-designed and distributed. Like the numerous squares throughout Savannah, the SA.GA. tools suggested here—and others—can become a part of the Savannah commons. Help us write the story that helps Savannahians tell their own stories!

  • What tools and frameworks would be helpful in creating a sustainable business hub?

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    By Scott Boylston

    While the last post shared the design work created by a SCAD Sustainable Practices in Design team focused on the physical attributes and the general operations of a sustainable hub for Accelerate Savannah, this post shares another team’s work, which focused on the second question:

    2: What tools and frameworks could help such a hub effectively accelerate existing collaborations in sustainable sectors of the Savannah economy?

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  • What would a hub for a sustainable economy look like, and where might it be located?

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    By Scott Boylston

    This is the second of 4 posts that delineate the efforts made by the Sustainable Practices in Design classes at SCAD to help members of Accelerate Savannah shape a green jobs economy in Savannah. With the task of exploring potential locations and operational models of a “sustainable hub,” the class homed in on three questions, the first of which was:

    1: What kind of physical space would best serve the objectives of the hub, and where in Savannah does such a place already exist?

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  • Next Steps Toward a Green Economy

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    By Scott Boylston

    For five months over the course of the last year, two SCAD Sustainable Practices in Design classes have worked with members of Accelerate Savannah to further their endeavor of fostering the growth of Savannah’s green collar economy. Accelerate Savannah’s intent is to help create, retain and grow sustainability-focused jobs in the region. Primary objectives of this effort include creating an inclusive economy that empowers the chronically underemployed, and permanently retaining some of the creative energy that passes through local colleges and universities.

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  • seed till fork

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    by Kelly Vormelker

    Approximately one year ago, I competed my Masters in Design for Sustainability at SCAD. My final project focused on the relationships between small local farms and restaurants. Since graduating, I have continued to work within the local food scene of Savannah. I have continued my work at local 11ten, a restaurant that sources the majority of its product from local farms, I became a market manager at the Forsyth Farmer’s Market and I represent Savannah River Farms by selling their all natural beef, pork, poultry and lamb to local restaurants. I am excited to be a part of this changing scene and I continually look for ways to work within and improve it.

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  • A Saga for Savannah

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    By Nicole Andrews, Jerome Elder, Liz Lukken and Santiago Castillo

    When determining how to define SA/GA for the community of Savannah, we drew inspiration from the origin of the word saga. The term saga was used to refer to Scandinavian epics that depicted battles, victories, feats, and journeys. Having knowledge that the word refers to an epic tale of victories, we wanted to encapsulate the spirit of Savannah’s rich cultural history into what defines SA/GA.

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  • Modeling Opportunities for a Sustainable Economy

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    By Jorie Ballun, Caleb Sexton, and Hina Shahid

    During tour mid term presentation our team had outlined a process for Accelerate Savannah to develop sample ‘initiatives.’ The first step being selection of key partners, the second step was to identify the opportunity, model the opportunity, develop contracts and fifth step; recruitment of associates.

    The three identified sectors were food, energy, and craft. The three sectors were chosen based on the need and awareness in the community, and the energy already existing in the Savannah community in these sectors. These three sectors exhibited the most potential for green job development and placement. These sectors have the potential to grow and expand locally providing opportunities for green work force development and incubation of enterprise. Our team set out to map one initiative as an opportunity in each sector from a project depth perspective in terms of Savannah’s existing infrastructure, the businesses and entities.

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  • What’s YOUR SA/GA?

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    By Nicole Andrews, Jorie Ballun, Santiago Castillo, and Jerome Elder

    Pulling two ideas together and forming one team was a challenge yet we were able to form a consistent stream of ideas and plan to pioneer forward into uncharted waters. Merging the concept behind iDentify Savannah and the implementation of a local currency, we were able to form a basic plan for a new brand to emerge for Savannah.

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  • A 5 Tier Development Model for Community Innovation

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    By Jorie Ballun, Caleb Sexton, and Hina Shahid

    Building on our earlier concept, and further research into workforce development literature, our team added a fundamental base to our system: soft skills, which include life skills, resume development, basic literacy, and math skills, as well as writing, computer, oral presentation, and finance skills. With the inclusion of this foundational layer, the system is complete from basic development up to the entrepreneurship level. As developing these soft skills is outside of the project scope of Accelerate Savannah‘s sustainable hub realm, it will be essential to partner with Savannah’s existing resources.

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  • Accelerating in Savannah: Home for a Hub?

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    By Santiago Castillo, Caroline Ingalls and Arielle Vilardo

    Introduction

    The following is a conceptual design for a physical hub that would support Accelerate Savannah‘s vision of a vibrant and inclusive economy in Savannah: offices, maker space with a merchandise shop, display spaces, rental spaces for developing businesses, educational classrooms, and studio spaces. The Southern Pine Company of Georgia’s gorgeous industrial warehouse, situated at the cross of East 35th and Broad Street, perfectly fits the bill for Accelerate Savannah’s rapidly developing ‘Hub’ concept. This post is not intended to announce that the hub will reside on this site; only to provide a glimpse of what it might look like if it did. At approximately 18,000 square feet of building area, the space is bursting at the seams with opportunity to boost Accelerate’s vision of becoming a business incubator that promotes the collaboration of sustainable minds for the benefit of the community.

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