On January 23rd and 24th, academics came together with Jewish clergy, laity, and educational leaders from around the country to examine how theories of business innovation can be applied to American Jewish institutions. Some key problems addressed included how to engage with the large population of Jewish individuals who feel disenfranchised by current institutions, how to improve professional training for rabbis and Jewish educators, and how to develop innovative yet familiar ways of mobilizing congregations.Conference participants discussed both academic theories on disruptive innovation as well as current community-based efforts that have already introduced organizational innovations. Presentations and discussions from the conference are planned to be worked into a future publication.
The conference was organized by KIE Senior Fellow Barak Richman as part of KIE’s program in Religion and Public Life. The schedule and list of participants is available. The conference was co-sponsored by Duke Law School and Duke’s Center for Jewish Studies.