Living Labs bring together public, business, government and researchers to co-create services, systems, technologies and social solutions to real-life problems, in real-life settings. Living Labs “… blur the conventional boundaries of innovation, cutting across the traditional value chain” (Kristensson, 2012).
Living Labs can be used to support service,technology and social good innovations. An important characteristic of Living Labs is that users actively participate in the innovation process rather than being objects of observation. Mobilising inter-disciplinary expertise they are better able to develop innovations and services to address complex, systemic issues. Living Labs are oriented towards making a difference to real people in real life situations and are not bound by academic pursuit.
The original concept was developed in MIT, however it really took flight in Europe. Today the European Netowrk of Living Labs (ENoLL) plays an important leadership role for the Living Labs movement globally.