“The past is a foreign country;
they do things differently there”
- L.P. Hartley

For generations, Federations have been the engine that makes Jewish communal life possible in North America. But the dizzying pace of technological evolution, lifestyle changes and the swinging pendulum of our political and civic environment means that

our challenges
and opportunities
are different today.

And so must be the way we tackle them.

What is FedLab?

Federation has been shaping the Jewish future for more than one hundred years. FedLab is the place to prepare for the next century. Stakeholders will be divided into lab groups, each working on one of the following critical questions:


Federations’ Fight Against Antisemitism and the Anti-Israel Agenda

A rise in antisemitism. An increase in hate crimes directed against our community. Massacres in our houses of worship. Anti-Jewish tropes used in media, politics, and everyday life deepen our fear. Issues that once united our community, such as Israel, now engender passionate disagreements, especially among younger Jews. This happens as a movement, known as BDS, seeks to delegitimize the Jewish state.

How do Federations lead us through these turbulent times? How do we empower?

Safety First — How can Federations make communities physically and psychologically safe and empowered?
A Generational Perspective — Do these challenges ignite or turn off younger Jews?
Creating Space for the Conversation — How do we both provide an open forum and maintain community unity in a divided environment?
Battling BDS — How do we fight delegitimization and own the Israel narrative?
FRD Lens — What is the impact on campaign messaging and how much money will the fight entail?


More Jewish Living; More Jewish Community

Organized Jewish life in the 20th century was rooted in how Jewish life was lived — taught in the synagogue, socialized within the walls of the JCC and delivered through a rote curriculum.

Today, we — particularly younger Jews — are just as likely to consider our home address to be yourname.com as 222 Maple Street. We check out books on our iPhone rather than the library. 21st century Jewish education must evolve to fit the reality of how we live and learn.

How can Jewish Federations change the trajectory of Jewish life and living in North America?

Diverse Communities — What can Jewish community look like today?
Turning Power Upside Down — How do we design from the bottom up, spreading who owns Jewish exploration?
What We Know; What We Don’t — What are the models we have, and what do we still not know?
The New and the Renewed — How do we build the new while elevating and refreshing the traditional?
FRD Lens — How do we marshal the significant resources we need to do this?


A Reexamination of Our Human Service Agenda

We are the foundation of Jewish philanthropy in every city in North America. The sickest, the neediest, the loneliest, arrive at our doorstep. Or if we are doing our jobs, we are on theirs first.

Are we prepared for the future? Economic volatility. An uncertain future for public social services. An aging population. And a growing community of neighbors with special needs.

Does Federation need a new model?

Bigger than the Campaign — Are new revenue and investment models necessary to meet the scope of the issues?
Relationship Reformation — What are the best collaborative models for tackling these matters with our partner agencies?
Generational Disconnect — Millennials want to change the world. What will move them to help change ours?
Target 2030 — If we could tackle one social need and solve it, what would it be and how could we do it?
FRD Lens — The quandary of turning some of our most compelling needs into a motivating campaign message — and what does the solution actually cost?

Begins Sunday at 1:30pm | Ends Tuesday at 12:30pm

FedLab will engage you with expert facilitators in deep conversation and interactive, problem-solving experiments to test assumptions, find real solutions and take us to the next level.

Come ready to utilize all your powers of innovation, strategy and partnership in the Lab.

FedLab is about taking a leap in order to land on new ground for our shared Jewish future.

How to Register

Federation professionals $399

Lay leaders $499

FedLab will be invitation only, with invitations coming directly from your local Federation. If you would like to find out more about attending FedLab, please contact your local Federation leadership. If you have been told that you’re approved to register, send us an email at FedLab@JewishFederations.org and we’ll take it from there!