Skunkworks: Facilitating Innovation to Solve Health Care Problems

What is Skunkworks?

Skunkworks, a unique innovation event series hosted by Providence Research in partnership with St. Paul's Foundation, aims to develop a culture of innovation at Providence Health Care by applying design thinking to find answers to complex local problems with global relevance, and by bridging the gap between diverse individuals with the goal of solving problems in health care.

The term "skunkworks" originated in the 1940s as an alias for an American engineering lab that worked on top-secret and innovative programs at Lockheed Aircraft Corporation. Today, the word “skunkworks” describes a project developed by a loosely structured group of people who identify issues and pilot creative solutions.

Find out more about our previous Skunkworks events below, and stay tuned for future events and announcements. 

Skunkworks: Hacking Wounds 

Skunkworks: Hacking Wounds, the second annual Skunkworks event, occurred on September 22-23, 2022. It was designed to tackle the challenges faced by patients and communities when dealing with wounds, both in Canada and around the globe, and brought together a diverse group of people to find solutions to this significant health issue. 

Watch the video from Skunkworks: Hacking Wounds

“Somebody gets hurt, we’re there, to lift up the hearts and the minds, so they heal.” Musqueam Knowledge Keeper Sulksun (Shane Pointe) opened the event, which took place on the traditional, ancestral and unceded territories of the Coast Salish People, including the territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. “The most beautiful word, for me, in Coast-Salish language is nuts amaht. Nuts amaht simply means ‘we are one.’”

“I believe that the best way to deal with challenges is to get the best, brightest and most diverse minds that we can get in rooms like this, and let them loose to ideate and come up with solutions,” said Dr. Darryl Knight, president of Providence Research, in an address he gave at the welcome on the first day. 

Read a full recap of the event here.

Thank you to all Skunkworks: Hacking Wounds participants, mentors and judges for attending the event. We'll see you next year!

Skunkworks: Hacking Pain 2021 

Skunkworks: Hacking Pain was our inaugural Skunkworks event. Find out more here.

Interested in helping out? You can partner with us, become a sponsor, or sign up to be a mentor!  Email


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If you are interested in learning more about future sponsorship opportunities, please contact:

Peter McLoughlin
Manager, Corporate Partnerships