Diversity & Inclusion

The other bright lights at Light City

Labs@LightCity is a world-class gathering of thinkers, both well-known and slept-on. Here's why you should attend.

Panelists speak at one of the innovation conferences of Light City 2016. (Courtesy photo)
This is a guest post by Jamie McDonald, founder of Generosity, Inc., and volunteer co-chair of Light City.
If the nighttime art of Light City is the festival’s beauty, the daytime program, Labs@LightCity, is the brains. In its second year, it is one of the largest and most unique social innovation conferences in the country.

From April 3-8, leading national thinkers will share the stage with brilliant Baltimorean — some well known and many not so well known. Each day, emerging voices and established thinkers will explore the innovations and practices that will build stronger, more equitable cities. In six one-day labs — HealthLab, GreenLab, EduLab, SocialLab, DesignLab, and FoodLab — we’ll explore the future of society, and every attendee will have the opportunity to learn, network and be heard.

Why do more than light up the night?

We believe that Baltimore is an emerging center for social innovation in the country, marrying our civic, academic and entrepreneurial talent to change the future of urban America. We’re working to make Light City a singular convening annually of thinkers, artists, innovators, changemakers and ordinary citizens. With determination, creativity — and, admittedly, a little magic — Light City will be for social innovation what Sundance has been for film, SXSW for music and tech innovation, and Art Basel for contemporary and emerging art.

Tapping bright minds

Labs@LightCity was shaped by a group of 18 curators consisting of artists, activists, community leaders, executives and entrepreneurs. They shared their perspectives and tapped their networks to shape the amazing content of the Labs.
The result of their efforts is a program for the Labs@LightCity that includes:

  • New York Times best-selling authors,
  • MacArthur Genius Grant winners,
  • world-famous chefs,
  • thought-provoking futurists,
  • ground-breaking scientists,
  • digital storytellers,
  • teenage activists,
  • entrepreneurs,
  • committed educators,
  • an amazing YoYo virtuoso,
  • one Baltimore Raven
  • and two barbers who are rethinking the role of barbershops.

It is a world-class gathering — right here in Baltimore. At Labs@LightCity, the box you checked on your ballot, the neighborhood you live in, doesn’t matter. What matters is how you are elevating the vibe for everyone — how your light makes us all a little brighter. We invite you to join us.


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