Innovation is in our DNA
Atlas Workshops isn’t like other travel companies, tour operators, or educational travel providers. Atlas Workshops evolved out of a design studio developing projects around the globe. In 2010, we were working at the forefront of technology, innovation, and social impact in the world: developing new ways for cell phones to help responders in the aftermath of the Haiti earthquake, investigating how Kenya’s public transport system could be safer, and even researching new ways to buy a taco in Mexico.
As designers, we specialized in design research, the first (and most important if you ask us) part of the design thinking process. Working with Fortune 500 companies, small NGOs, and global aid organizations ranging from the UN to Kiva we planned and led our own research trips. These trips took us behind the scenes and helped us unravel the way that things work, while building local networks, and creating something new.
As students, travel had a huge impact on us. So it made sense to say yes when a school asked if they could join us on a trip. After returning from India with a small group of teenagers, it was clear that this style of travel was not only effective for honing new ideas, but was a fundamentally new way to approach global education and intentional travel. The trip was fun, creative, authentic, meaningful, and most of all, everyone came home inspired, curious, and passionate about the next steps–for their work and their lives.
So we set down to design this new approach to travel–for high school students and schools, universities and companies, travelers who are tired of tourism and want to create something new. A few years later we’ve seen the results: we have a network of engaged and creative alumni, incredible feedback from students, travelers, parents and partners, and growing interest from people who want to develop the networks and skills to innovate.