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You’re invited to participate in the Build Session process!

Prosper Birmingham has enlisted Fourth Economy to conduct a study of the city’s Black-owned business and support ecosystem. As part of this endeavor, Fourth Economy will be leading Build Sessions to solicit community input and support in designing the project’s final recommendations. These design thinking-oriented events will be hosted on May 25, with one conversation considering the existing ecosystem and another considering community mindset relative to business creation, entrepreneurship, and support for local businesses.

What is a Build Session?


A Build Session is an interactive workshop designed to brainstorm, prioritize, and build solutions. Some refer to sessions like these as “working sessions” or “focus groups.” We call them Build Sessions to emphasize the focus on moving past talking about opportunities or issues and toward building actions. Through this process, we engage stakeholders who know the issues best and are likely to be involved in implementation. This is key to developing realistic actions and gaining buy-in from key stakeholders.

Build Session Keys to Success


There’s no such thing as a bad idea. Everyone has good ideas, and we value your input. When generating ideas use a framework of “Yes… and.”


Make sure everyone is able to participate. Acknowledge communication differences and be respectful about sharing the “floor.” “Step up/step back”


Minimize other distractions. We know it’s hard! Please turn off your phone or ignore alerts. Phone off.


Use the brainstorming time to record your ideas on post-its, in your own words. Avoid generalizations – be specific. 
“If it’s not written down, it didn’t happen.”


Interested in participating? Check your email for an invitation and to RSVP.


This session will be designed to consider ways to improve Birmingham’s economic and business support ecosystem for Black-owned businesses.

May 11 - 9:00 am - 12:00 pm

United Way Hands On
3600 8th Ave S
Birmingham, AL 35232


This session will consider opportunities to shift longstanding racial disparities relative to creation and growth of Black-owned businesses, to better generate wealth and opportunity for Birmingham’s Black community.

May 11 - 1:00-4:00 pm

United Way Hands On

3600 8th Ave S

Birmingham, AL 35232

Unable to join in-person?

Request a virtual worksheet below and submit your comments prior to May 25! We’ll ensure they are included in our discussions.

Fourth Economy Consulting is hosting these Build Sessions as part of our work with Prosper Birmingham creating a map of the city’s Black-owned economic and business support ecosystems. 


Questions? Please contact us!

Ross Berlin, Consultant

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