Collaborative Working

Innovative Infrastructure

CoLab Exeter is developing a progressive and innovative approach to infrastructure support that aims to enable, broker, and be a catalyst for social change. By identifying and bringing together relevant agencies to work collaboratively, we have a unique opportunity to achieve our collective aims, make best use of existing expertise and resources, and consider new opportunities for social investment, social enterprise and social entrepreneurship.

NAVCA Report Change for Good 2015

Collective Impact

Working as a collective hub we are able to focus support on an individuals’ needs and allow them to remain in control of their own journey. People are able to access a variety of services, support, learning and social experiences in one place that contribute towards their recovery, belonging, rehabilitation and wellbeing.

Working collectively, we can have a measurable impact on individuals’ lives, build stronger and more connected communities, and increase organisational resilience by joining up services and resources, nurturing innovative ideas, and learning from each other.


Using our local knowledge and sector expertise we are uniquely placed to identify, broker and connect new and innovative ways of working that address local challenges. We have developed a collaborative model that has successfully joined up a range of local agencies to deliver more efficient and streamlined support for our client groups. The model allows organisations to make better use of funding opportunities, to share expertise, work across sectors, deliver better outcomes, and to become more resilient in a challenging funding environment.

Our team are available to discuss new initiatives for partnership working and collaboration, they can also provide consultancy, coaching and / or infrastructure support to organisations, individuals and social entrepreneurs who share our vision, mission and values around:

  • Designing and implementing an integrated collaborative model or hub

  • Developing and delivering new opportunities for collaboration and partnership working

  • Delivering workforce development training and initiatives

  • Setting up and running a social enterprise 

If you would like to work with us or find out more about the way that we work, get in touch here


Working collectively in the same physical space generates authentic partnerships that operate effectively across organisational boundaries. It provides unique opportunities for agencies to share knowledge and good practice, to learn from each other and test new ideas, and to collaborate on funding initiatives and cost efficient ways of working.

We have successfully connected over 30 organisations and projects from community, social enterprise, public, and business sectors, working together to tackle some of the most challenging issues facing our local community today.

Collaboration in Action

Clocktower GP Surgery

The Clocktower surgery relocated to the new purpose-built premises within CoLab when it opened in the summer of 2016. 

The Access Health Care-run surgery caters especially for the needs of the homeless and vulnerably housed and it is clear there are significant benefits from it being co-located in this innovative wellbeing hub - alongside a host of other organisations who share its commitment to helping some of Exeter's most socially excluded individuals. 

Indeed, the Clock Tower has been highly commended in a recent report by the government's health and social care regulator. the Care Quality Commission [CQC], which highlighted its 'truly holistic approach' and adjudged it 'outstanding'. 

The CQC's chief inspector of general practice, Professor Steve Field said 'Staff [at the Clock Tower] worked collaboratively with many other providers, both within the [CoLab] Hub and externally, to ensure the vulnerable patient group was supported to receive coordinated care which met their needs... Practice staff used opportunistic, innovative, and efficient ways to deliver more joined-up care for patients."


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