The Neighbourly Lab’s mission is to figure out “what works” to make strong resilient communities. We collect evidence and data to help organisations to shape strong neighbourhoods. Our domain-area therefore includes: community participation and social cohesion, and ways to reduce social-exclusion, prejudice and loneliness.
Within this policy-area, the Lab looks broadly at all neighbourhoods and everyday-life interactions (for example: in streets or shops or buses), and also extends to how people engage with each other in online-environments. Therefore, our “cohort” is universal, covering everybody in the UK. However, in much of its work the Lab will focus on parts of the UK with higher-than-average levels of social or economic hardship, or where there are perceived problems related to social-cohesion. We are guided by the MCHLG’s priority-areas (for example, the 101 English towns identified for support through the Towns Fund). The Lab is focused on efficacy – figuring out what works, and where and why, so that solutions can scale and can be replicated elsewhere. Because of this emphasis on scale and replicability, the Lab has a particular interest in the role of technology and social infrastructure.