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social innovation what it is why it matters and how it can be accelerated. 3 Acknowledgements 27 32 stages of innovation,27 Social organisations and enterprises. 28 Social movements,3 Authors 28 Politics and government. 31 Markets,31 Academia,4 6 Summary 31 Philanthropy. 32 Social software and open source methods,7 Social innovation an introduction. 7 The growing importance of social innovation 33 35 Common patterns of success and failure. 7 The Young Foundation a centre of past 34 Handling innovation in public contexts. and future social innovation 34 A connected difference theory of. social innovation,8 12 What social innovation is, 8 Defining social innovation 36 39 What next an agenda for action.
9 Fields for social innovation 37 Leadership and structures suited. 9 A short history of social innovation to innovation. 12 Social and economic change the shape 37 Finance focused on innovation. of the economy to come 37 Public policy frameworks that. encourage innovation,38 Dedicated social innovation accelerators. 13 19 Who does social innovation individuals 39 National and cross national pools. movements and organisations 39 Research and faster learning. 17 The wider context understanding,social change,40 A global network for action and research. 20 How social innovation happens the uneasy, symbiosis of bees and trees 41 46 Annex 1 Why we need to know more about. social innovation,41 What s known about innovation in. 21 25 Stages of Innovation business and science, 21 Generating ideas by understanding 44 Business innovation and social innovation.
needs and identifying potential solutions similarities and differences. 23 Developing prototyping and piloting ideas 44 Existing research on social innovation. 23 Assessing then scaling up and diffusing and related fields. the good ones 45 Why what we don t know matters,25 Learning and evolving. 26 Linear and less linear patterns 47 Annex 2 10 world changing social innovations. 48 Annex 3 Suggested Further Reading,50 References. Skoll centre for social entrepreneurship,geoff mulgan. acknowledgements ABOUT THE AUTHORS, This report is an updated version of a report This paper has been written by Geoff Mulgan with. published with support from the British Council in input from Young Foundation colleagues Simon. Beijing in 2006 We are grateful to the very many Tucker Rushanara Ali and Ben Sanders. individuals and organisations who have shared their. thoughts and experiences on earlier drafts including The Young Foundation. in our conferences in China in October 2006 as 17 18 Victoria Park Square. well as discussion groups that were held in London Bethnal Green. Edinburgh Oxford Dublin Shanghai Guangzhou London E2 9PF. Chongqing Hong Kong Singapore Seoul 44 0 20 8980 6263. Melbourne Copenhagen Helsinki Amsterdam youngfoundation org. and Bangalore We are also particularly grateful to. the many organisations around the world who are Printed by The Basingstoke Press. contributing their ideas and practical experience ISBN 1 905551 03 7 978 1 905551 03 3. to the creation of the Social Innovation Exchange First published in 2007. socialinnovationexchange org This third edition The Young Foundation. represents a work in progress and we are grateful,to the team at Sa d Business School in Oxford for.
earlier inputs and for enabling us to share it with. the participants in their world forum on social,entrepreneurship Any errors or misunderstandings. are our own,SAID BUSINESS SCHOOL UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD. social innovation what it is why it matters and how it can be accelerated. 1 The results of social innovation new ideas environmentalism or from market dynamics. that meet unmet needs are all around us They and organisational incentives Here we look at. include fair trade and restorative justice hospices how innovations have progressed through a series. and kindergartens distance learning and traffic of stages from the generation of ideas through. calming Many social innovations were successfully prototyping and piloting to scaling up and learning. promoted by the Young Foundation in its previous We look at how in some sectors key stages are. incarnations under Michael Young including some missing or inadequately supported We look at the. 60 organisations such as the Open University role of technology and how inefficient existing. Which Healthline and International Alert Over the systems are at reaping the full social potential of. last two centuries innumerable social innovations maturing technologies We also show that in some. from cognitive behavioural therapy for prisoners cases innovation starts by doing things and then. to Wikipedia have moved from the margins to the adapting and adjusting in the light of experience. mainstream As this has happened many have Users have always played a decisive role in social. passed through the three stages that Schopenhauer innovation a role which is increasingly recognised. identified for any new truth First it is ridiculed in business too In all cases innovation usually. Second it is violently opposed Third it is accepted involves some struggle against vested interests. as being self evident the contagious courage that persuades others to. change and the pragmatic persistence that turns, 2 These processes of change are sometimes promising ideas into real institutions. understood as resulting from the work of heroic, individuals such as Robert Owen or Muhammad 3 Social innovation is not unique to the non profit. Yunus sometimes as resulting from much broader sector It can be driven by politics and government. movements of change such as feminism and for example new models of public health markets. Skoll centre for social entrepreneurship,geoff mulgan.
for example open source software or organic food electricity or the internet depended as much on social 1. Helpman E 2004 The Mystery, movements for example fair trade and academia innovation as they did on innovation in technology or of Economic Growth Cambridge. for example pedagogical models of childcare business Today there are signs that social innovation MA Following on from Solow s. as well as by social enterprises microcredit and is becoming even more important for economic growth work Elhanan Helpman estimated. magazines for the homeless Many of the most This is partly because some of the barriers to lasting that differences in knowledge and. successful innovators have learned to operate across growth such as climate change or ageing populations technology explain more than 60. the boundaries between these sectors and innovation can only be overcome with the help of social of the differences among countries. thrives best when there are effective alliances innovation and partly because of rising demands for in income and growth rates. between small organisations and entrepreneurs the types of economic growth that enhance rather than. bees who are mobile fast and cross pollinate and damage human relationships and well being The key. big organisations the trees with roots resilience growth sectors of the 21st century economy look set. and size which can grow ideas to scale Innovations to be health education and care accounting between. then scale up along a continuum from diffusion them for around 20 30 of GDP and more in some. of ideas to organic growth of organisations with countries These are all mixed economies strongly. the patterns of growth dependent on the mix of shaped by public policy and requiring models of. environmental conditions including effective innovation very different to those that worked well for. demand to pay for the innovation and capacities cars microprocessors or biotechnology. managerial financial etc,7 Surprisingly little is known about social. 4 We describe a connected difference theory innovation compared to the vast amount of. of social innovation which emphasises three key research into innovation in business and science. dimensions of most important social innovations In an extensive survey we found no systematic. overviews of the field no major datasets or long, n they are usually new combinations or hybrids of term analyses and few signs of interest from the. existing elements rather than being wholly new big foundations or academic research funding. in themselves bodies Some of the insights gained into business. innovation are relevant in the social field but there. n putting them into practice involves cutting across are also important differences and so far none of. organisational sectoral or disciplinary boundaries the big names in business theory have engaged. seriously with the field Some of the small, n they leave behind compelling new social literature on public innovation is also relevant. relationships between previously separate individuals but less good at understanding how ideas move. and groups which matter greatly to the people across sectoral boundaries We argue that the. involved contribute to the diffusion and embedding lack of knowledge impedes the many institutions. of the innovation and fuel a cumulative dynamic interested in this field including innovators. whereby each innovation opens up the possibility of themselves philanthropists foundations and. further innovations governments and means that far too many rely on. anecdotes and hunches, 5 This approach highlights the critical role played.
by the connectors in any innovation system the 8 Although social innovation happens all around. brokers entrepreneurs and institutions that link us many promising ideas are stillborn blocked. together people ideas money and power who by vested interests or otherwise marginalised The. contribute as much to lasting change as thinkers competitive pressures that drive innovation in. creators designers activists and community groups commercial markets are blunted or absent in the. social field and the absence of institutions and funds. 6 Economists estimate that 50 80 of economic devoted to social innovation means that too often it. growth comes from innovation and new knowledge 1 is a matter of luck whether ideas come to fruition. Although there are no reliable metrics innovation or displace less effective alternatives As a result. appears to play an equally decisive role in social many social problems remain more acute than they. progress Moreover social innovation plays a decisive need to be We advocate a much more concerted. role in economic growth Past advances in healthcare approach to social innovation and have coined the. and the spread of new technologies like the car phrase Social Silicon Valleys to describe the future. SAID BUSINESS SCHOOL UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD, social innovation what it is why it matters and how it can be accelerated. places and institutions that will mobilise resources national pools to develop and test new approaches to. and energies to tackle social problems in ways that issues like prison reform or childcare. are comparable to the investments in technology, made in the first silicon valley and its equivalents n New institutions focused on adapting new. around the world This is likely to require major technologies for their social potential such as. changes amongst governments foundations civic artificial intelligence grid computing or Global. organisations and businesses and strategies that Positioning Systems. prioritise creative connections and institutions that. can cut across boundaries n New ways of cultivating the innovators themselves. drawing on experiences from organisations like the. 9 We show that although much innovation is bound School for Social Entrepreneurs. to be messy and unpredictable it is likely to be, greatly helped by 10 Very diverse fields are becoming interested in. social innovation They include the fields of, n Leaders who visibly encourage and reward successful. innovation and who can straddle different fields n Social entrepreneurship. n Finance focused specifically on innovation n Design. including public and philanthropic investment in, high risk R D targeted at the areas of greatest need n Technology.
and greatest potential and organised to support the. key stages of innovation n Public policy, n More open markets for social solutions including n Cities and urban development. public funding and services directed more to, outcomes and opened up to social enterprises and n Social movements. user groups as well as private business,n Community Development. n Incubators for promising models along the lines, of the Young Foundation s Launchpad programme All bring distinctive methods and insights But. and the NESTA Young Foundation Health Innovation all also have a great deal to learn from each. Accelerator to advance innovation in particular other and from more extensive and rigorous. priority areas such as chronic disease the cultivation research on how social innovation happens We. of non cognitive social skills or reducing re offending describe the emerging network of networks. SIX socialinnovationexchange org that is, n Explicit methodologies for R D in the public sector bringing together like minded organisations and.
including new ways of forming partnerships for networks from all of these fields to share ideas. innovation between local and national governments and experiences with the aim of speeding up our. common ability to treat and even solve some of the. n Ways of empowering users to drive innovation pressing social challenges of our times

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