Our take from the second annual gathering of European Impact Hubs in Odessa
16 October 2019 - Impact Hub Berlin

At the end of last month, the second annual gathering of European Impact Hubs took place in Odessa from 19th-21st September 2019. What a diverse and interesting experience it was! A total of 74 Impact Hub Makers from 19 countries and 29 different European Impact Hubs joined, each contributing their stories and visions for the future of the global network. We’d like to share the four main inspirations from this year’s gathering: 

The power of storytelling: Impact Hubs share a common sense of belonging. We come from the same roots, going back to 2005, and collectively make up the DNA of the global network. We each bring our local flavor to the wider community and collectively strive to empower social entrepreneurs across the globe. Sharing that story and our work within our network inspires new collaborations and enables us to grow beyond borders and cultures. 

Diversity and empathy: We are all part of a global framework, share the same values of trust, collaboration and courage, and believe in the power of community to create change. Nevertheless, while the global framework gives us our overall sense of direction, it also allows for sufficient space and freedom to shape our local Impact Hubs and culture. As a result, each Impact Hub offers unique local programmes, decides on a thematic focus and has its own business model. Locally, we are able to adapt to the challenges of the people we work with, offering tailor-made programmes, while having the support and backbone of a global network with almost 17,000 members. 

Creativity through co-creation: We do not have to reinvent the wheel! Sometimes, we get stuck in our daily hamster wheel of to-do lists and meetings, not being able to rethink our ways of working. Spending quality time with other people working at Impact Hubs and sharing our experiences was truly eye-opening. The ability to learn from each other’s mistakes enables us to fail faster and iterate better. 

Human connections: In light of the climate crisis that affects us all, we’ve had several discussions around the value of real-life human connections. While we are aware of the carbon impact that our travel to Odessa has on the planet, we also know the value of connecting with each other to share and learn together in person (you can read our collective climate resolution here). Though technology gives us the opportunity to stay in touch throughout the year, we truly believe that meeting face-to-face has brought us closer together and strengthened our bond. 

A warm thank you from Berlin to the entire team at Impact Hub Odessa who created a unique and impactful experience for us all. Chapeau! 

Are you eager to connect with the network and kick off a project with us in Berlin or beyond? Then reach out to Sophie via [email protected].