Our Guiding Philosophy
Culture Shapes Health.
"Numbers alone may move governments and markets... but they will not move communities to action. Culture is the "data" of the oppressed. Culture is the operating system that guides a community. People's stories reveal the lines of code. When understood this way, artists and cultural organizers can become programmers of HOPE.
- Theo Edmonds, Chief Imaginator, IDEAS xLab
IDEAS xLab is guided by the unifying philosophy that CULTURE SHAPES HEALTH. We realize this philosophy through our work on the ground as cultural innovators dedicated to developing co-creation models for population health improvement with the working poor, the underserved and struggling middle class. We achieve our goals through cross-sector partnerships focused on creating bridge strategies that move communities toward sustainable, supported autonomy through cultural innovation and policy change.
Policy is an imagining of the future. This is one of the core domains of all artists and an activity that is fundamentally cultural. To be sustainable, health and community development policies must find ways to become embedded in local cultures.
Different things are meaningful to different people. One size does not fit all.
Health, when combined with creativity and empowerment, transforms what a person can't do into what a person (or community) can do.
Health Justice Is Good Business.
Healthy, creative, empowered communities can more fully participate in the society. When all communities are able to fully participate, it creates a more diversified workforce. Diversity is the fuel of innovation and the cornerstone of resilient, integrated economies.
HOPEBOX HEALTH is IDEAS xLab's overarching, long-term plan for accelerating the pace and scale of health improvement in America, providing a crucial bridge that connects grass roots ideas and people to the grass tops of policy and systems.
While not perfect and always dynamic, we are committed to continuously iterating with our cross-sector network of partners to build a flexible, replicable delivery model that produces new value at the nexus of culture, health and community development. Our work stands a proclamation of connection and social justice -- making new options visible for population health improvement and establishing the care and celebration of one another as the highest priority of the arts in America.