Launched in 2013, the Innovation Lab leverages Youth Radio’s top-flight journalism and our track record as one of the first programs worldwide toteach teens mobile app development. Before the Innovation Lab, our newsroom and app-development efforts operated as separate programs. With the Innovation Lab, we’re collaborating! In partnership with in-house mentors and colleagues at MIT Media Lab’s Center for Mobile Learning, young people integrate journalism and programming to design dynamic new storytelling tools and platforms.
The Innovation Lab is driven by the bold proposition that young people are creators of knowledge, not just receivers; that they are story-makers, not just subjects; that they are technology developers, not just users; and that they are researchers, not just researched.
In the Innovation Lab, we:
- Produce multi-media stories related to science, technology, engineering, and math (with a special focus on environmental themes).
- Develop apps linked to these stories distributed via mobile markets and the web.
- Create curriculum resources for anyone to use, distributed via PBSLearningMedia and other outlets.
Key to the Innovation Lab model is collegiality and mentorship. Young people have worked and learned with professional designers and developers from Stanford University, Mozilla, Smule, Apple, Google, MIT, Ask.com, UC Berkeley, StarMakerStudios, and many other hotbeds for digital ingenuity and imagination.
Innovation Lab = Data-Driven Journalism x Youth-Made Apps!