Scotland’s Centre for Social Innovation

The Melting Pot first opened its doors in October 2007, after several years’ development by a grassroots group of like-minded folk in Edinburgh, lead by founder and managing director, Claire Carpenter.

‘Looking back, my dream was to create a special resource base – a shared working and learning environment, in my home city. I wanted to bring together interesting people who do interesting things, and to develop a dynamic and diverse community that shared a sense of collective purpose and reach. Ultimately it’s all about a place where the sum of the parts was greater than the whole’.

As a base for all sorts of resources, The Melting Pot harnesses the power of an unstructured collective – the power to ignite, support and effect social change by connecting resources to people, their ideas, passions and expertise.

Every year, over 10,000 people visit The Melting Pot as we engage with and welcome delegations of social innovation practitioners, enablers and policy makers from all over the world.

As Scotland’s Centre for Social Innovation and home of coworking in Edinburgh, we lead the way in ensuring creative, resilient and effective social innovation takes its essential place at the heart of a vibrant society.

We do this by providing a range of resources and services, supporting and inspiring our pioneering coworking community and through our successful incubation programme the Good Ideas.

In turn, we help Scotland fulfil its economic, social, cultural and environmental potential.

“As a Government, we are really, really strongly supportive of people who are working towards the change that will really make a difference to the societies in which we live. It’s a delight to be able to work with a whole range of people who are making that happen. We are very very pleased to have been able to support The Melting Pot and the work with you are undertaking. It matters.”  Yvonne Strachan – Head of Third Sector and Equalities Unit, Scottish Government

Balancing the books

It’s important for The Melting Pot to be an independent and sustainable resource that is accessible, affordable and attractive.  It’s important we provide added value, support and inspiration. We’re so much more than just an office or venue!

Social entrepreneurship drives our commitment to achieving this as we balance our much-needed income streams (and books!) with our greater social purpose.  The Melting Pot is a celebrated social enterprise and a registered charity.

Making the most of our ideal capital city centre location and transport links, The Melting Pot is THE refreshingly affordable and fully accessible alternative to Edinburgh’s corporate venue hire, serviced office space and virtual office services.

These services bring essential income and a wonderful range of people through our doors, quite literally an ideal entry point to Scotland’s Centre for Social Innovation and home of coworking in Edinburgh.

The Melting Pot has always received a wide range of in-kind and financial support without which our story would be very different. Collaboration and partnership are what we’re all about and our thanks go to all those involved in helping us – past, present and future.

Voluntary Code of Practice for Social Enterprise in Scotland

The Melting Pot is a charity and a social enterprise. We operate according to the Voluntary Code of Practice for Social Enterprise in Scotland. This is a set of criteria, values and behaviours that Social Enterprises in Scotland use to recognise each other.

the code

Living Wage Employer

We are pleased to announce that we have joined the Living Wage movement and are now an accredited Living Wage Employer. This means that every member of staff in our organisation earns not just the minimum wage but the real Living Wage. The Living Wage is an hourly rate set independently and updated annually, based on the cost of living in the UK.
We believe that every member of staff deserves a Living Wage, because a fair day’s work deserves a fair day’s pay.

We are a Living Wage Employer


  • Our vision

    is a world which has a vibrant, creative, resilient and effective social innovation community.

  • Our mission

    is to stimulate and support social innovation.

  • Our ethos

    is about being innovative, practical, inspiring, respectful, connecting and transformational.

Find out more about The Melting Pot

Meet the team

Meet our members