Social Innovation and Territorial Development (Atlas of Social Innovation)

Date of Publication: 
July 2018
Publication Type: 

Social Innovation and Territorial Development (from Atlas of Social Innovation - New Practices for a Better Future)

Year: 2018

Publisher: SI drive

Summary (excerpt from the report)

Social Innovation is on the rise: As a lived practice, social innovations take countless approaches and present a wide array of success stories. On a policy and public level, interest in the concept has been growing over the last years, and the international scientific debate has gained momentum. At the same time, there is an increased awareness of the complexity of challenges modern societies are facing and the subsequent requirement that innovation processes have to meet. Like technological innovations, successful social innovations are based on a lot of presuppositions and require appropriate infrastructures and resources.

In the 1980s, in Europe and Canada, social innovation was rediscovered as both a scientific concept and an action slogan for analysing and guiding territorial development, especially in urban areas. Mainly referring to two action research trajectories, one focused on Europe, the other on Québec in Canada, this short article addresses area-based community development from a social innovation perspective. It explains how bottom-linked governance is a condition sine qua non for durable socially-innovative urban commons and why neighbourhoods, socio-spatially identifiable localities and spaces, work as breeding grounds for social innovation. In section 1, it sheds light on the place of social innovation in territorial development. In the subsequent two sections, it explains two trajectories of territorially rooted in socially innovative action- research. The article closes by making some more general reflections on spaces of SI.

* To access the full version of the report, visit the website of the Atlas of Social Innovation here