Why a Better Normal?

Search the term ‘new normal’ and you’ll find images of people wearing face masks, dining behind plastic shields, attending class via webinar, and enjoying the local park six feet apart. While the coronavirus pandemic has forced us into a dizzying array of new behaviors, they are far from normal.

As with all crises, it has opened our collective consciousness to change – to the possibilities of a better normal. Now is the time to work together – to combine our expertise, intellect, political capital, and creativity to create a world that is not just new, but better

Hacking a Better Normal

To define a better normal and create an action plan to get there, our energetic and experienced teams leveraged our global, multi-disciplinary reach to quickly identify opportunities ripe for repair and enhancement. We conducted a virtual hackathon with academics, industry leaders, and policy makers from across the United States to provide multiple perspectives.

In the spirit of sprint-style problem solving, we launched a virtual hackathon to promote rapid ideation. The workgroups arrived at several ways that communities could quickly pivot to a better normal in the areas of mobility, public spaces, digital access, and data-driven decision making. We continued to iterate on the hackathon to develop recommended action plans

Action Plans for a Better Normal

Ninety-five ideas were generated on how to implement the Better Normal. A subset of these were developed into more detailed action plans here in the Better Normal Toolkit.

The action plans we have created through this process should be regarded as a starting point for the continued addition of diverse voices and local community involvement, rather than as an end in themselves.

Orla Pease, VP, Digital Innovation