IF Windsor-Essex is an enabling organization that connects the education, health, government and corporate sectors with applied research, education, physical space and the entrepreneurial community in Southwest Ontario. Our purpose is to facilitate and support the rapid emergence of our region as a nationally-recognized incubator of innovations, solutions and new businesses that build on our strengths and drive the future of commerce.
To connect talented people, ideas and resources in the pursuit of the next generation of game-changing solutions.
To provide exceptional infrastructure, tools and resources that support and enable connection, collaboration, invention and creation.
To support the growth of an entrepreneurial culture by providing opportunities to explore new ideas and experiment with modern tools, technology and approaches.
To lead by example through bold experimentation and the open sharing of the lessons of our successes and failures.
To be the relentless spark driving the next action, and unabashedly being the supporter, cheerleader and advocate of the entrepreneurial culture.
Windsor-Essex is a region that is widely recognized as a thriving entrepreneurial community, a place where new products and new solutions are conceived and developed. It is a place where open collaboration, experimentation and testing of new ideas lead to the start of the next big thing; a place driven by an inclusive, entrepreneurial spirit; a place where diversity of people, ideas and resources intersect and merge, and where long-term vision and an eye to the future continually guide our actions.
We believe in providing tools and support to empower people, enabling and encouraging them to pursue their personal and economic dreams.
We believe in fostering a culture that embraces “open-source” and expanding the pie thinking, which is more productive, both creatively and economically, than a culture that clings to “silo” and zero-sum game thinking.
We believe in being a catalyst for cultural change, and in facilitating access to the connections, skills, infrastructure and resources required for our entrepreneurial community to thrive.
We believe that lasting, impactful change will best be achieved through a self-sustaining “creative ecosystem” of participants that see value in working together.
Transparency & Accountability
We believe that our organization and our community must work in an open and accountable manner that engenders trust and goodwill between all participants, within and outside the community.
OUR STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES
Improve the conditions for start up success in the region.
Reduce the cultural/social barriers to entrepreneurship.
Foster an entrepreneurial mindset.
Improve the velocity of connections, experimentation, and venture creation.
Provide opportunities for students to practice the skills of innovation.
Provide opportunities to practice the processes of innovation.
Provide research and education opportunities that support.
Provide linkages and opportunities to collaborate between sectors.
Provide connections and opportunities to collaborate with communities outside our region.
IF Windsor-Essex will act as a catalyst for the kind of positive, disruptive and visionary change that results from a community-driven creative ecosystem. We will foster a culture of collaboration, sharing and innovation in which solutions to problems and opportunities can take root and grow. We will be a “clearinghouse” for ideas and a central hub for connecting people, ideas and resources, all with a view to creating a better place in which to live and work.
THE IFWE BRAND
IF. That’s a bit odd; what does it mean?
IF we had done this, or that.
IF we do this or we don’t do that.
IF we do the following, or don’t do the following.
IF focusses the mind. IF is the big question. Ergo, it's the big opportunity.
IF we light a match, we just might start a fire. If we don’t, we won’t.
IF. It's essentially is a box of matches.
We believe that creative people with entrepreneurial spirit exist everywhere, including right here in Windsor-Essex. Given the opportunity, those people can do great things for our community.
IF... we can keep them here.
If is a mindset; a movement. But it's not just intellectual. It will be supported by The IF Centre, a bricks and mortar facility where inventive, proactive, daring people can develop and test their ideas in the company of like-minded compatriots.
At the IF Centre, initiative and optimism will not hit that all-too-familiar brick wall. The practical tools and assistance will be there, in a secure, upbeat environment, so that “dreamers” can press on.
IF is built in the belief that successful small business is a force for good, for the individual and for our community.