CoLab has its roots in the MIT Community Fellows Program, a 25-year effort of DUSP, to support community activists' learning through campus-based coursework, learning and building networks. The Community Fellows Program evolved into the Center for Reflective Community Practice (CRCP), which drew on the development expertise of DUSP faculty and students, and used reflective practice to help communities and leaders "know what they know." CRCP aimed to improve the lives of those most marginalized by our society by mining the knowledge of residents in low-income and marginalized communities, for their own use. Building on the principles of reflective practice, CoLab seeks to leverage a range of community assets, including community knowledge. We work with communities to develop living examples of social, economic, and ecological innovation.