Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

FP7

SIMPACT Report Summary

Project ID: 613411
Funded under: FP7-SSH
Country: Germany

Final Report Summary - SIMPACT (Boosting the Impact of Social Innovation in Europe through Economic Underpinnings)

Executive Summary:
Europe is confronted with many complex and interrelated socio-economic challenges that have clearly been exacerbated by the economic crisis. These challenges include youth unemployment, migration, ageing population, poverty, and gender inequalities to name but a few. Welfare services struggle to cope with these challenges and growing segments of the population experience increasing difficulty in accessing support. Individuals and vulnerable groups affected by these wicked problems face significant constraints notably in their ability to participate in social, economic, political and cultural life. While the key role of traditional for-profit innovation in boosting economic activity and social development is generally accepted, their impact on successfully addressing these challenges appears insufficient. Consequently, new solutions leading to improved capabilities, new forms of collaboration and a better use of societal resources are required. In this context, emerging social innovations in Europe and around the world offer a promising avenue to sustainably address the problems at hand. According to SIMPACT’s understanding


« Social innovation refers to novel combinations of ideas and distinct forms of collaboration that transcend established institutional contexts with the effect of empowering and (re)engaging vulnerable groups either in the process of the in-novation or as a result of it. »


Unfolding social in-novations’ economic and social impact
Social innovation will realise its potential contribution to inclusive growth to the extent it can unfold its social and economic impact for vulnerable people as well as for society at large. This can only be achieved when civil society, public and private sector co-evolve, accompanied by changes of markets shaped by an institutional frame that incorporates social and economic factors as well as their interplay. However, several key issues need to be addressed to fully integrate social innovation in the European economic sphere and its policy environment. Gaining a better understanding of the components, objectives and principles of social innovation, as well as the underlying processes and contexts of social innovations is at the core of SIMPACT. As a largely unexplored research field, SIMPACT focuses on the economic dimension of social innovations in an attempt to better apprehend the impact of social innovations on social and economic transformation by building on and extending an advanced knowledge base. SIMPACT seeks to highlight the potential for the empowerment and (re)inclusion of marginalised and vulnerable groups in society. Consequently, a shift in thinking and acting from «marginalised and vulnerable as burden of society» towards one that values their potential within society, constitutes a cornerstone in the social debate. The project created an advanced understanding of the economic dimensions of social innovation and embedded this within new concepts, models and instruments of benefit to policy makers, innovators, investors and intermediaries. The application of its policy recommendations, indicators, evaluation methods and business models in developing an appropriate social innovation support infrastructure accelerates the growth and scale of social innovation competitiveness and productivity.

SIMPACT’s core outcomes are:

γ Theory of middle-range of the economic and social dimension of social innovation
γ Economic simulation model and scenarios about utility of social innovation
γ Concept of a regional social innovation ecosystem considering social innovations’ components, objectives and principles
γ «SI Business Toolbox» supports social innovators, intermediaries and investors in the design of sustainable business models
γ «SI Evaluation Toolbox» which is a practical guide to both assessor and assesses by structuring the development and decision process; structuring the decision process provides grip to social innovators, social investors and policymakers.
γ «SI Policy Toolbox» which was created to help policymakers at local, regional, national and EU levels reflect on their role in the social innovation milieu
γ Case data base and social innovation indicator sets which offer an alternative approach to capture social innovation with metrics accounting for tangible and intangible aspects covering various sectors

Project Context and Objectives:
Linking theoretical research with the collection, analysis and modelling of empirical evi-dence and continuous stakeholder dialogue has allowed the SIMPACT consortium to develop the appropriate tools and mechanisms, including measurement and ex ante impact assessment tools, for social innovators, intermediaries and policymakers.

Theoretical Foundation
As a first step towards a better understanding of the economic dimensions of social innovation, a «Multidisciplinary Literature Review» has been undertaken. The review provided the basis for a theoretically sound and comprehensive concept to help identify the numerous factors that underlie economic and social impacts. The research discussion was built on a multidisciplinary middle-range theory that explores the economic dimensions of social innovation. This included developing a common understanding of social innovations’ components, objectives and principles. Following an iterative process of theorising and evidence collecting, a narrow categorisation of social innovations provided the joint framework for our empirical research.

Collecting Evidence
In an attempt to identify how and why socially and economically successful innovations work, SIMPACT’s empirical work provided detailed insights regarding the innovation process throughout different stages of the social innovation lifecycle. For this purpose, data was systematically collected and analysed by means of «Meta-Analysis», «Social Innovation Biographies» and «Business Case Studies».

Welfare regimes &
fields of action as
selection criteria
To select cases social innovation databases were screened applying two filters: welfare regimes across Europe and field(s) of action. With regard to the latter, the following thematic areas were defined in reply to the grand societal challenges Europe is facing: (1) «Employment» which is associated with empowerment and capabilities, in particular with regard to young people; «Migration» in terms of inclusion but also literacy; «Demographic change» including both elderly people and young generations (e.g. health care, early childcare). Together with the transversal themes «Gender», «Education» and «Poverty» these fields of action constitute the unifying elements of cases across the various levels and foci of analysis. Each case is embedded in a specific context of which the welfare regime is one building block. In addition to the outlined selection criteria, a solution/initiative had to comply with the project’s definition of social innovation and have some type of organisational structure (e.g. NGO, association, enterprise, and cooperative, initiative), to qualify as SIMPACT case. The problem of case selection bias was resolved through a selection of «successful» versus «less successful» or «failed» cases from a variety of SI databases

Levels of analysis
& methodologies
In order to reflect the evolutionary character of social innovations and account for their dynamics in related policy streams distinct forms and various levels of analysis have been adopted:

Meta-analysis was applied to systematically summarise and integrate findings from existing social innovation case studies and analyse differences in the results, thus adding value to existing knowledge while avoiding duplication of research efforts. The qualitative comparative analysis leads to the identification of the meta-components, -objectives and principles under distinct welfare regimes across Europe.

Business Case Studies (BCSs) provided SIMPACT with an important means of understanding the economic aspects of social innovation and of ground-ing design thinking. Aspects covered comprise problems addressed and idea, core solution and motivation as well as the development process and value chain. BCSs advanced the understanding of economic aspects of already described cases though deep qualitative desk research, during which information from distinct sources (e.g. publications, websites, interviews) is collected and compared.

Social Innovation Biographies (SIBs) of successful and less successful social innovation initiatives have been conducted to deepen our understanding of development paths, knowledge trajectories and stakeholder interactions throughout the innovation process. SIB's allow for the reconstruction of so-cial innovation from its first idea to its spread and diffusion identifying involved actors, processes and networks as well as their interplay by fol-lowing the process with narrative interviewing methods and triangulation.

SIMPACT’s evidence-based approach to social innovation placed a heavy emphasis on empirical research by underscoring the following aspects and dimensions of social innovation:

γ Activities of organisations that aim at strengthening the quality of life for vulnerable and marginalised populations by empowering them to engage in economic, social, cultural, and political activities;
γ Solutions that seek to impact directly targeted marginalised groups through empowerment, support and/or provision of resources, and indirectly by changing the institutional frame and social and political conventions;
γ Initiatives taking place outside the market-instituted and/or established institutional context.

In line with SIMPACT’s middle-range theorising process, the empirical findings were further incorporated into a social innovation simulation model in order to elaborate different behaviour scenarios. Our findings have critically reflected the opinions of experts and intermediaries including welfare organisations, relevant public bodies and associations of marginalised and vulnerable groups through small-scale stakeholder experiments.

Towards Stronger SI Concepts
Design Thinking
is centred on inno-vating dynamics through SI users and beneficiaries


Reverse engineering refers to the exploi-tation of know-how by starting with the known solution and working backward to define the factors that added to its de-velopment.
Social innovations cannot only be observed in their evolutionary pathways or be supported at the policy level. The use of «Design Thinking» can consequently improve our understanding of social innovation as practice and experiment. This approach can help define the value proposition, highlight the business model by mapping stakeholders’ channels and modes of interaction with users. This, in turn, provides a better understanding of social innovation initiatives, their effectiveness and replicability as well as reshaping and integrating objectives and forms of participation. Applying reverse engineering, categorising different types of social innovation and their economic dimensions was a first step towards exploring relevant business models. By exploring and connecting social innovation solutions to alternative economically business models we were able to design suitable tools to assess the existing forms of social innovation. Developing stronger social innovation concepts in instrumental in understanding the different forms of entrepreneurship and alternative business models of financing, wealth distribution and employment.

Methods, Tools & Instruments
At the launch event of SIMPACT, little was known about what constituted a successful social innovation and supported its economic underpinnings. Verifiable indicators and impact assessment are particularly important for developing and implementing effective public policy instruments. The conceptualisation of social innovation, its economic, social, spatial and institutional context constitutes a significant challenge to traditional modes of policy production. Flexible policy regimes capable of supporting the spread and growth of successful examples of social innovation while accounting for local specificities and contexts as well as varying welfare regimes are of vital importance to support and sustain social innovations. Throughout different phases of the SIMPACT project, we succeeded in elaborating different methods, tools and instruments for different stakeholders confronted with budget and resource limitation and ex-ante impact assessment constraints. Among the main stakeholders one should refer to social innovators investors and a host of policymakers at regional and national levels.

Measuring social innovation
The economic approach to social innovation serves the purpose of assessing the impact of new ideas and practices throughout different phases of social innovation lifecycle. This in turn, supports policy makers and social innovation actors when selecting investment options and spreading and scaling of successful social innovations

Assessing social and economic impact
Ex ante impact assessment tools support policymakers to better assess the economic and social impact of SI initiatives, programmes and policies by analysing the anticipated impacts of the planned activities. Social innovation measurement seeks to optimise the design and structure of a particular policy or programme, the sequence of priorities, as well as its internal and external coherence.

Project Results:
3.1 The Economic Dimension of Social Innovation
Social innovation will realise its potential contribution to inclusive growth to the extent it can unfold its social and economic impact for vulnerable and marginalised populations as well as for society as a whole. Moreover, in view of the European vision of « Open Innovation, Open Science, Open to the World », applying an open approach to social innovation means making better use of the many, rather small, and locally embedded social innovation activities across Europe. Boosting the impact of social innovation through an advanced understanding of its economic dimensions and elaborating tailored tools supporting policymakers, innovators, investors, and intermediaries, was thus at the core of SIMPACT.

SIMPACT’s focus on the economic underpinning of social innovation shows how the gap between large scale societal challenges and small-scale social innovation activities can be reduced. More specifically, the economic dimension of social innovation highlights:

γ How social activities can be supported by higher degrees of efficiency while establishing a balance between social, economic and political objectives;
γ How a comprehensive social innovation ecosystem that facilitates social innovation activities can be designed and sustained;
γ How open innovation can promote access to tacit knowledge for social entrepreneurs, actors, beneficiaries and civil society involved in the public welfare system.

Social innovation as an evolutionary process comprises the development, implementation, practical application and consolidation of such novel combinations. Hence, social innovations are characterised by an iterative process of experimentation and learning with an open end including abandonment and failure; they go beyond singular individual activities.

Components,
Objectives & Princi-ples of Social Inno-vation
The economic foundation of social innovation hinges upon the proper identification of social innovations’ economic principles (e.g. modes of efficiency and governance), objectives (e.g. social and economic value) and components (e.g. institutions, resources, actors) The study of components, objectives and principles of social innovation has enabled us to explore the potential levers and mechanisms that accelerate social and economic transformation, develop improved business models and elaborate public policies that support and/or enable social innovation processes. The study of economic foundation of social innovation provides a broad framework to comprehend the effectiveness of social innovation processes – from initial idea to the implementation stage followed by its spread and diffusion leading to institutional change. This process includes several aspects:

From ideas to solu-tions
Process dimension of social innovation
First, one needs to consider the process of upgrading the initial idea to a solution including new modes of organisation (e.g. projects, campaigns, volunteer or not-for-profit organisations). Each mode has a different understanding of the goals to be achieved and the means to be deployed to achieve the goals efficiently and effectively. Although the nature and extent of resources tend to vary, the key challenge for social innovators is to have access to scarce resources. This, in turn, necessitates the creation of new organisational routines and processes as well as novel managerial practices. In addition, socially innovative ventures require organisational and entrepreneurial capabilities in order to:

γ Sense opportunities: this includes scanning and monitoring changes in the environment, assessing beneficiaries’ needs and demands, capturing ideas and identifying new relationships with multiple beneficiaries and actors;
γ Seize opportunities: this includes tackling social needs or societal challenges in order to simultaneously create social and economic value and redeploying and reconfiguring existing and emerging capabilities.

New forms of collaboration
Second, new modes of cooperation and distinct forms of partnerships emerge within different social, political, cultural, technological and environmental contexts. Despite differences in nature and scope of social links, most models are characterised by an open and embedded approach to social innovation that can, in turn, trigger and sustain institutional change. Social innovation initiatives must establish close collaborations beyond their own boundaries and across sectors to access, explore, exploit, share and diffuse knowledge, facilitating cross-organisational learning, collaboration and value co-creation. Social innovation constitutes a process of collective learning supported by different cooperative and collaborative schemes.

Collaborative value creation
Collaborative value creation, in turn, requires:

γ Distinct organisational and managerial capabilities among social innovation partners;
γ Mobilisation and leverage of distinct resources such as human knowledge and capabilities;
γ Reciprocity and complementary resources to develop innovative solutions that could have otherwise not been created;
γ Common and linked interests meaning that partners perceive their self-interest as associated with the group, common good, fairness , and the creation of shared value.

Scaling social innovations
In addition, social innovators can spread and diffuse social solutions and scale the process of social innovation thus reinforcing social capital. Scaling requires a wider pool of social actors, supporters, followers and imitators, but also rule breakers and opponents. Moreover, scaling necessitates effective actions and socially innovative activities through individual and collective actions. In this regard, social innovations efficiency is as much determined by actors’ objectives and cooperative schemes and strategies as affected by their ability to design novel modes of governance based on coopetition and co-creation.

SIMPACT’s SI Simu-lation Model & Be-haviour Scenarios

In a nutshell, the approach considers the preferences and characteristics of agents (i.e. users, in-novators) by inte-grating a wide array of contextual varia-bles and drivers (e.g. cost of innovation), enabling factors (e.g. state capacity, inter-mediaries, social trust) within a utili-ty maximization framework.
In order to gain further insights as how social innovation paths and trajectories are sustained, SIMPACT has developed an economic model that takes into account individual preferences driven by risk, intrinsic utility, bureaucratic barriers, uncertainty, demand and supply shocks. Modelling and simulation activities resulted in three SI scenarios. (1) The Role of Enabling Factors & Ecosystem: By increasing solidarity and efficiency in a society, enabling factors such as social trust works as a catalyst for social innovators. (2) Consequences of Uncertainty in the SI Process: Uncertainty and volatility are mostly present in social innovation initiatives leading the socially innovative solution towards various trajectories depending on the extent and type of the risks faced along the social innovation process. (3) Bureaucratic Burden & Implications for Scalability of SI: Bureaucratic and managerial barriers could prevent social innovations from extending to larger target groups.


3.2 Towards a Typology of Social
Innovation Initiatives
Balancing Social Innovation Components, Objectives & Principles
The following typology aims at positioning single social innovation activities in the overall context of social innovation by allocating them to the three societal levels (micro, meso, macro) and with respect to the balance between economic and social objectives. The first column describes actors at the micro level which initiate or actively support social innovations. There is a longstanding tradition of established business models for associations, cooperatives or mutual and fast growing social enterprises that have a specific legal form in several countries. The centre column concentrate on actors that balance economic and social objectives at the meso level including actors from policy field and social economy which traditionally are responsible for institutional change. Actors at the macro level comprise global economic and social influence in a geographical point of view and social change in a societal point of view, but independent of the locality.

Table 1.
Balancing Social and Economic Ob-jects at Micro, Meso and Macro-Level


Micro level perspective on actors
Traditional companies and companies initiated by individuals (e.g. user-driven companies) at the micro level have a clear focus on economic objectives, but there are recently also a growing number of companies which are interested in considering social objectives. Corporate social responsibility strategies, for example, recommend to make use of the very specific competencies of people (e.g. autist people in software-development or blind people in cancer prevention are cases that we have analysed in our case studies) and participative approaches in work place innovation. However, following this strategy several obstacles arise, e.g. that social objectives are not linked with the core business and are currently addressed by external foundations.

Meso level perspective on actors
At the meso level, traditional companies as well as companies from the social economy are organised in associations and foundations with a specific focus which are members of policy round-tables or networks in the related policy fields (health, youth, labour policy etc.), in regulation or expert boards. The involvement of hybrid social innovation actors (platforms, fora etc.) is less committed to a specific policy field, but is more heterogeneous in terms of its members and their organisational form.

The communication at this level is informal, but creates successful mechanisms of cooperation: Interaction that leads to imitation and adaption in other regions; Platforms, and fora that result in community building. The analysed social innovation cases in SIMPACT give evidence that capacity building becomes more attractive for meso level actors.

Capacity building includes new cooperation models between different social services, combinations of information activities, strengthening of professional structure of public services, training for local government employees and training and couching for teachers. Likewise, networking activities which pave the way for knowledge sharing, the combination of project and web platforms as well as community building are special features of examined social innovation cases. Program-innovation containing the introduction of the legal status for social enterprises makes a successful progress in several European countries at the meso level. Finally, implementation mechanisms aiming at the integration of inclusion policy and cluster policy such as the ESF-project support social innovation at the meso level.

Macro level perspective on actors
The specificities and influences of the macro level actors are not part of the SIMPACT project, but it seemed to be very useful to integrate some aspects of the global context in our analysis, e.g. the geographic scope and the macroeconomic shocks and trends

Balancing Social & Economic Objectives
The approach of SIMPACT further concentrates on the transfer from micro to meso level under consideration of allocated actors. The question is on how to support the hybrid social innovation activities/cases (micro level) to a sustainable and effective balance between social and economic objectives in order to reform or change the institutional frame (meso level). Dealing with this question, we take into account the actors at the micro level as given units with distinctive objectives which could be combined or balanced in a divergent or sometimes contrasting way.

Opposite objectives & trade-offs as under-lying rational
Figure 4.5 is structured along the dimensions of social and economic objectives on one hand, and efficiency and effectiveness on the other hand. Taking efficiency and effectiveness as two opposing poles does not pose them as two extremes on a continuum, but bases on the assumption that there is a trade-off of between efficiency and effectiveness in social innovation processes. SIMPACTs empirical findings show that the preference to reach both efficiency and effectivity result in, for example, bricolage attitudes which could endanger the survival of the organisation itself. In this vein, bricolage is a consequence of a dominant focus on results (effectiveness) and the need to acquire more and more resource instead of improving the process of balancing efficiency and effectivity. In contrast, especially in the case of self-organisations or organisation with a strong involvement of beneficiaries, the process of participation and empowerment is dominating (efficiency) and the results are almost neglected. However, at best, effectiveness and efficiency constitute equilibrium. Moreover, the interplay of economic objectives and social objectives are traditionally characterised by a trade-off. The equilibrium in the centre of the coordination system also depicts a balance between economic and social objectives as well as locates important actors involved in social innovations at the micro level.

Figure 1.
Balancing Economic and Social Objec-tives, Effectiveness & Efficiency


Analysing the paths of the four dimensions (efficiency, effectiveness, social and economic objectives), relating to four ideal quarter circles (I-IV). We argue that in general, traditional companies focus on economic objectives and little on efficiency or on a socially sustainable process, because cost cuttings and time saving dominates the business strategies of companies. These companies are mostly not interested in initiating social innovations. Nevertheless, it could be of high interest to raise their awareness for the economic potential resulting from engaging in social issues and in cooperating with social actors.

Social Enterprises & Companies with CSR/WPI activities
A priority for economic objectives and a strong focus on social aspects could be found in the area of economic-driven companies, namely social enterprises («economic-effective»). Moreover, CSR and workplace innovation are the most spread tools to integrate aspects of social efficiency, whereby efficiency is more than cost calculation («economic-efficient »).

Cooperatives & Asso-ciations
The lower two quarter circle shapes, i.e., «efficient-social» and «effective-social» emphasise a strong focus on social objectives, for which cooperatives and associations are good examples. While cooperatives focus on output («social-efficiency»), associations tend to emphasise outcomes («social-effectiveness»). Forasmuch, it is recommended to manage associations and cooperatives with a focus on social objectives towards a central balanced position including the aim of effectiveness and efficiency in order to reach long-term sustainability. This is particularly the case for self-organised groups of disadvantaged people, activities which engage the beneficiaries (i.e., embedded participation) as well as public embedded activities and activities with strong charismatic leadership.

This typology is a first step towards a deeper understanding of different types of social innovation. Further typologies need a broader empirical base than given in SIMPACT. Aiming at a more systematic view of economic underpinnings in further research should try to create a typology of social innovation activities, which indicates: 1) involvement of beneficiaries, 2) form of organisation, 3) thematic field, 4) scope of activities
3.3 Towards Sustainable Social Innovation Business Models: Service Design Tools
Social innovations are characterised by business models that are driven by creating, delivering and capturing social value. They are structured as multi-actor models, crafting multiple value propositions for various target groups of users, beneficiaries and paying customers and rely heavily on vast networks of supporters to reduce costs. Due to resource limitations, most social innovations are run under a bricolage approach and are often created as frugal solutions. Social innovations’ sustainability has to be implemented together with the solution. SIMPACT’s toolbox supports the design of social innovations’ sustainability.
Design Thinking
Design Thinking recently emerged as the most suitable methodological approach to sustain the development of SIs with particular reference to its growing adoption by intermediaries operating in this field. As social innovators are frequently not prepared to cope with the development of robust and economically sustainable solutions, the adoption of design tools (specifically service design tools) comes into play to help them set up, assess and refine solutions. Service design tools possess a set of features that make them particularly suitable to this purpose:

γ they are frequently conceived within participatory design processes;
γ their use does not call for relevant (economic) resources;
γ they can be recombined and adapted to different development processes;
γ they are (or seem) accessible to non-experts.

Within SIMPACT’s framework, the construction of a business model is connected to the use of a set of tools meant to sustain the development of each of its building blocks.

Service design as point of reference
The tools primarily come from the field of service design, and are integrated with business tools. Tools are specifically connected to the building blocks of the SI Business Model Canvas, and their use is meant to provide a clear answer to the core question that each block poses to the innovators. Unlike other toolboxes for SI, the business model canvas is not simply one of the tools that can be used to support the generation of innovative solutions or the improvement of existing ones, but also the interface to access the whole toolset.

SIMPACT’s SI Business Toolbox
The assembly of the building blocks and the construction of an overall coherent business model is the core objective of the SIMPACT toolbox. With the adoption of this toolbox, some of the major shortcomings that we observed in the process of SI can be tackled and overcome.

The sustainability of the SI can be implemented, assessed and refined together with the solution, rather than attached ex-post. In our framework, the solution and its business model are not conceived as two separate entities that will be subsequently brought together, but as pieces of the same overall picture.

Who is it for?
SIMPACT’s toolbox aims to support three main typologies of users (Figure 2):

γ Social Innovators: individuals or groups who have found solutions to the mounting social challenges facing our societies today.
γ Intermediaries: organisations or experts who support the development of social innovations through consulting and incubation services and network facilitation;
γ Investors: public institutions, organisations, banks, foundations who support the development of SI through funds, donations and investments.
Figure 2.
Toolbox User &
Main Objectives

Innovators can use the toolbox to start and/or consolidate their SIs, and to self-assess their solutions: the value they can bring and the impact they can create. Intermediaries can use the toolbox to support the establishment of new solutions or the improvement and the assessment of existing ones.

Investors can use the toolbox to assess the value of proposals (ex-ante assessment) and the impact of existing solutions (ex-post assessment).

The toolbox thus combines a twofold perspective: a generative one, where it supports the creation of innovations; and an analytical one, where it supports the assessment of existing solutions. In the second case the same tools meant to generate new solutions are used to analyse and assess the features of existing ones.

How is it organised?
The single tools have been selected with two core objectives in mind: (i) their effectiveness in providing an answer to the core question that each building block of the canvas business model raises; and (ii) the necessity to avoid resource-intensive processes. Below is an overview of the tools sorted according to the adapted SI business model canvas.

Figure 3. SIMPACT SI Business Toolbox - Overview


The SI Business Toolbox is designed to facilitate developing and/or improving SI business models. That is why we have designed the toolbox within the framework of our social innovation business model canvas:

1. Preliminary Phase: Idea Drafting
A limited set of very simple and non-resource intensive tools (those in green), meant to support innovators in the idea drafting phase.

2. Development and Startup
A larger set of more complex tools, meant to provide intermediaries with instru-ments to support the development of social initiatives.

3.4 Regional Social Innovation System
While research on regional innovation systems is well-established in economics and innovation research, the idea of regional social innovation is rather new. A major difference between Regional (economic) Innovation Systems on the one hand and Regional Social Innovation Ecosystems on the other hand is the region as point of reference: Silicon Valley, Third Italy, and Baden-Württemberg functioned as «holy trinity» of regional innovation studies. In the course of the following years a lot of regional case studies with further good practices (Eindhoven, Tampere, Grenoble etc.) signified the value of regional innovation systems. Social innovation lacks such commonly accepted reference points.

In elaborating a Regional Social Innovation Ecosystem, one needs to account for the more general differences between social and economic innovation. Although not neglecting regional lead markets as an important innovation driver, economic innovations mostly target global markets, whereas social innovators are not generally interested in spreading their idea beyond the actual context. In addition, social innovative solutions are often co-created with the beneficiaries and as such are locally embedded. Consequently, the societal conditions of a region (including the challenges it faces), i.e. regional vulnerability, builds a core element of the Regional Social Innovation Ecosystem.


Regional vulnerability
In this context, the regional vulnerability covers the living conditions and the capacities of disadvantaged populations to overcome their constraint situation. In a broader sense, vulnerability refers to an inadequate response to potentially high-impact problems (social, economic, environmental, institutional). Hence, vulnerabilities are potential drivers of social innovation in a specific institutional context. Forasmuch, regional vulnerability is closely linked to institutional change at the regional level.

Accounting for the above the proposed regional social innovation system builds on the interplay of two main pillars: the challenges driving social innovation (i.e. regional vulnerability) and the context of social innovation activities.

The interplay of context & regional vulnerabilities.
The context of social innovation activities entails social innovators and the enabling and supporting environment (e.g. supporter, promoter, intermediaries). The challenges driving social innovation are structured by the social situation with respect to the vulnerability of the region. Mechanisms and instruments (e.g. governance, co-creation) define the interplay between regional challenges and the context of social innovation.

Distinguishing «challenges» from «context» is crucial: At a first glance, one could assume that the higher the degree of regional vulnerability, the higher is probability of unsolved problems and posing challenges, and the higher is the likelihood of social innovations to emerge. Accounting for the preconditions for socially innovative activities (e.g. inventive capacities, social capital, engagement, awareness), this impact chain, however, is not an automatism. On the contrary, regional vulnerabilities question the compliance with the conditions necessary to facilitate social innovation. Finally, it has to be considered that regional ecosystems are linked with and shaped by the external environment in different ways and to different degrees. Figure 4 presents the key elements, framework conditions and processes of a Regional Social Innovation Ecosystem.

Figure 4.
Regional Social
Innovation System


Context – Actor Constellation
Social innovators bring together ideas, resources, instru-ments for finding practical solutions to socio-economic problems.
The inner circle covers the context of social innovation that bases on a civil society characterised by a culture of responsibility and solidarity. It centres on the drivers of the social innovation activities, the social innovator. The group of innovators is heterogeneous including but not limited to social entrepreneurs, interest groups, cooperatives, coordinators of publicly funded initiatives, affected individuals or groups, and individuals sensitive to socio-economic problems.

Supporters & Promoters
Supporters are crucially important for the implementation of socially innovative activities. Teachers, social workers, volunteers that provide knowledge, financiers and suppliers of further resources, researchers or consultancies who help to work out project schemes and applications for funding, or legal advice are examples for promoting actors. Promoters comprising public and private as well as non-profit organisations, in particular foundations. become important when the activity grows and spreads.

Regional Vulnerabilities
The outer circle focuses on regional vulnerabilities and their interplay, rather than on singular problems as the challenges regions are facing multifaceted and interrelated, and responding social innovations pursue multiple objectives. For example, the integration of unemployed in the labour market is much more promising when it goes hand in hand with workplace innovation including alternative employment opportunities. , it is about learning and capacity building, about change and improvement. Covering various aspects, interactions are, therefore, crucial for the development of the ecosystem.
Interactions between innovators and target groups
First of all, it is about the interaction between social innovation actors and beneficiaries. Compared to service innovation the development of new solutions to social problems to a larger degree necessitates the active involvement of the beneficiaries/users, as social needs are best perceived by the citizens affect by the problem being address. Moreover, beneficiaries’ specific expectations, the innovation-relevant knowledge they own, as well as their acceptance and use of the new solution strongly supports this argument.

Interactions at the intersection of inno-vation activities and social situation
Second, interaction is about linking social innovation activities and the social situation; it is about designing social innovation in a strategic way. Being governed by formal and informal institutions, the range of actors and the modes of interaction are much more complex than in the economic field that is governed by the market.

Interactions as ca-pacity building mechanism
Third, interaction is about capacity building. Social innovation activities initially emerge as isolated activities, but they only can unfold their potential when they become part of a broader local or regional strategy to improve citizens’ quality of life. Such strategies need new modes of participation and cooperation at the political level. To this end, interaction is about policy innovation.

Interactions with the external environ-ment
Despite of the strong local embeddedness of social innovation activities the local is always linked with the global context. Social innovation actors often build fora and platforms, and interact with the European as well as the global social innovation community. With a few exceptions, laws and regulations in the policy fields (e.g., employment, education, environment, energy policies) and welfare regimes are defined at European and national level. They limit, hinder or give leeway for experimentation and innovation at the regional level.

3.5 Spread & Diffusion of SI – Moving from Micro to Meso Level
A broad range of exogenous and endogenous factors shape social innovations’ trajectories as well as the instruments favouring their spread and diffusion. Moving from isolated initiatives with local impact to broader societal impact, i.e. bridging micro and meso level of social innovation is crucial to achieve institutional change. Such processes are assumed to facilitate the utility of social innovation actors (initiators, firms, policymakers, beneficiaries) as well as the social and economic impact at large.


« Scaling refers to the most effective and efficient way to increase social innovations social and economic impact based on the operational model applied. »

Source: Adopted from Weber, Kröger & Lambrich (2015)


Scaling up & scaling out
In response to the identified challenges, scaling up and out mechanisms reflect the need to efficiently solve a social problem with the need of appropriate local conditions in which the social innovations can take place, i.e., a social innovation ecosystem. While both mechanisms strive to accelerate the impact of social innovation, their strategies to achieve this goal vary largely, notably as regards organisational issues and necessary actions. Elsewhere research has emphasised the potential of many social innovation «pilots» to be replicated at national or global scale. In the same vein, SIMPACT’s findings indicate that the transfer and adoption of socially innovative ideas is an essential instrument for scaling impact. This is why scaling out mechanisms gain in importance.

Scaling mechanisms’ levels of application
As we can draw from our empirical research (including 60 cases studies) scaling up and scaling out mechanisms are seldom used at the micro level (single ac-tor/organisation/initiative), but are more likely to be applied at the meso level, where pools of actors from distinct sectors collaborate in strong networks characterised by trust, knowledge exchange and financial security.

Scaling as Mechanism to bridge Micro and Meso Level
Identifying social mechanisms bridging the micro and the macro level is certainly an ambitious task. Drawing on SIMPACT’s empirical findings and relevant contributions from middle-range theory studies lead to the systematisation of bridging mechanisms by means of scaling.


Figure 5.
Scaling as Bridging Mechanism

Distinct social innovators
The first column in Figure 5 entails the actors or group of actors that initiate and drive social innovations, the social innovators. While the first three actors appear to often function as social innovators, social movements and the organised civil society (welfare associations, foundations, trade unions and so on) are less assertive as social innovators. Additional actors such as policymakers, however, are expected to enter the scene and take up the role in the future.

Table 2. Scaling as bridging mechanism


Scaling mechanisms
The second column «scaling» summarises activities or instruments that are used by social innovators to spread and diffuse their idea/solution in a broader societal context. Subject to social innovators’ motivations, strategies and resources instruments and activities vary largely. For example, social enterprises’ scaling instruments ideally base on and correspond to their business model and are frequently associated with organisational growth. In contrast, interest groups’ scaling activities centre on campaigning and knowledge sharing. Often these groups are locally embedded and globally connected.

Bargaining, reflec-tion & mutual learning
Interactions among different social innovators and conflicting actors to implement or impede a new solution, i.e., the process dimension (third column), become particularly apparent in the phase of scaling when socially innovative solutions attract the attention of a wider public. In this context all modes of governance can be found. While in certain phases the process is characterised by pure bargaining, in other phases it can be driven by reflection and shared learning or by self-enforcement and rule-breaking. For stakeholders in search for new solutions, for example, conflicts are not very likely as long as their innovation remains at the «margins of welfare state», whereas they experience major conflicts and tensions when scaling their solution as they put established institutions into question. In comparison, social enterprises scaling processes are foremost market-driven and call for balancing competition and cooperation to successfully spread and diffuse their solutions.

Role of policy
Policymakers and programmes play a crucial role in facilitating the acceleration of social impact through scaling. Instruments to intervene in the process range from seed-/start-up support and project funding, as is the case in current innovation policy, to different modes of cooperation and consensus building.

3.6 How Policymakers can Stimulate, Resource and Sustain SI
Social innovation is of growing importance in helping to realise multiple policy goals at European, national and local levels, contributing to a prosperous, inclusive and empowered society. Yet the relationship between public policy and social innovation remains both problematic and poorly defined.

For some, social innovation is a critique of public intervention, filling the gaps left by years of policy failure. They stress the versatile and embedded character of social innovation, reaching people and communities in ways that have typically not been available to public bureaucracies. Yet others point to the new forms of entrepreneurial policymaking emerging in some European public entities. They emphasise the innovative potential of cross-boundary collaboration between the public sector, the private sector, the third sector and communities, forging creative solutions to previously intractable problems. One thing emerges clearly from SIMPACT’s work with policymakers and social innovators over the last three years: traditional modes of policy production and delivery fail to create an environment capable of stimulating, resourcing and sustaining social innovation.

New Public Management: Enter Private Sector
Political and ideological imperatives for the reduction of spending on welfare and other social policies have led, in some countries, to the introduction of market disciplines to public service management. This tendency, labelled New Public Management (NPM), is based on five principal goals:

1. A desire to decentralise decision-making.
2. The introduction of management by objectives.
3. The reform of the public service labour market by contracting out services.
4. The introduction of competition to previously non-market sectors.
5. The introduction of a consumer orientation rather than a producer orientation.

In practice there have been big differences in the way that countries have approached public service reform and two contrasting pathways are evident.

Towards a New Mode of Governance
Bureaucratic, programmatic and NPM approaches to policymaking as described above often tend to co-exist at the national, regional and local levels, creating a policy landscape that is not entirely conducive to social innovation. Nonetheless there are encouraging signs that forms of governance focused on the enablement of social innovation are beginning to emerge in many parts of Europe.

Governance in Social Innovation
These emerging forms of governance are not well defined and understood, and the picture is confused by the competing models and explanations which exist throughout the literature. In the context of social innovation, governance is ideally seen as a non-hierarchical process involving networks of actors from both public and private sectors, and leading to collaborative action based on the identification of common interests through negotiation, bargaining and participation. The resolution of complex social and economic problems is beyond the reach of a single public organisation working alone; rather it involves a web of interrelationships and requires multifaceted approaches that cannot be contained in a single agency. The ability to work across government, between levels of government and across society has become a core requirement for public agencies, though one which is not always realised. In short, the need is to establish a model of multi-level governance in which public organisations operate as platforms of collaboration to leverage the power of others. Policymakers at the EU, national and regional levels need to challenge this tendency while forging new roles as enablers, catalytic agents and facilitators to accelerate the transformative potential of social innovation. Such an approach is based on participatory and networked processes characterised by interdependency, collaboration and trust. It is directed at improving both processes and outcomes in public policymaking and public service delivery in the light of increasing expectation and demands as well as growing complexity and fragmentation. The need is to open up a new terrain in which democratic dialogue, social capital construction and empowerment constitute the dominant characteristics. This implies very different ways of working for policymakers, and possibly a very different type of policymaker.
Policy Enablers of Social Innovation
Social innovations typically involve creative interaction between diverse actors; these actors can be public sector employees or institutions, service users, NGOs or other stakeholders in a given policy field. At an early stage it became clear that the key challenge lay in defining the factors in the wider policy and institutional environment that enable (or potentially disable) such ‘creative interaction’. We undertook a broad review of literature, not just in the field of social innovation but also covering public service reform and the transformation of public agencies, including their workplace practices and cultures. This led us to four key propositions:

1. Public policy can only truly create an environment effective in stimulating, re-sourcing and sustaining social innovation if public agencies themselves transform their working practices and culture.
2. A new model of participative governance is required, based on power-sharing, the inclusion of all stakeholders, transparency, an assumption that users will be involved in the co-creation of services, and a recognition that ‘landscape change’ in the social and economic environment involves a strong focus on intangible outcomes as well as quantifiable measures.
3. Models of partnership based on Programmatic and New Public Management policy models are inherently transactional and generally lack the characteristics needed to forge strategic, trust-based and long-term partnership, collaboration and convergence. Partnerships are required which focus on negotiated visions, open and inclusive dialogue, long-term collaboration beyond funding cycles, and an insistent focus on root causes.
4. Resources should follow the outcomes of inclusive dialogue in which the force of the better argument prevails, integrate budgets and services, stimulate experimentation and failure, and focus on long-term horizons.

The overarching proposition is that policy-enabled social innovation results from the synergies created when these four dimensions combine to create a milieu, or eco-system, based on mutually reinforcing practices.


Figure 6.
The Four Policy En-ablers of Social Innovation


These propositions were tested and further developed through a series of dialogue-based meetings with policymakers and other stakeholders from the Spanish Basque Country, Czech Republic, England, the Nordic Countries, Poland and Scotland. One of the clear insights from discussions with policymakers who seek to promote social innovation was into their struggle against the organisational demarcations that result in policy ‘silos’, an excessive focus on narrowly-defined quantifiable targets at the expense of long-term outcomes, and institutionalised risk-aversion and conservatism.

3.7 Framework to Measure Social Innovation
Not only markets and governments fail in providing perfect social innovations which meet all needs of vulnerable groups, also the innovations of self-organised groups in society may fail. Due to the uncertainty related to innovation no single form of organisation and no single stakeholder in society is perfect in solving all problems, at once and for all. But we can improve, as we can learn from our own experiences and those of other stakeholders (in social innovation initiatives and society at large). In this regard, applying indicators to capture social innovations, and ex-ante impact assessment of social innovation initiatives provide important means for improvements.

Social innovation-related knowledge and learning processes are mostly concerned with tacit knowledge, e.g. from informal discussions, story-telling and in-depth case studies. Measuring social innovation and turning the tacit knowledge of stories, discussions and case studies into more codified forms promotes learning and diffusion of knowledge. However, measuring social innovation is complex and calls for adjustments of the existing tools.

The traditional mainstream instruments of surveys and (ex-ante) evaluations have to be adapted to the needs of the characteristics of social innovation. A mixed-method approach is needed:

→ to cover the dynamics of the hybrid sphere where public, private, third sector and citizens interact, and the boundaries that separate them become blurred
→ to open up to new tacit (informal, subjective, intangible, context-dependent) knowledge on new needs, new stakeholders, new inputs, new roles, etc.
to collect and capture information at a variety of scale levels.

Framework to Capture Social Innovation with Metrics
Traditional economic metrics and mainstream (technological and business) innovation metrics are hardly appropriate for social innovation. An alternative approach to capture social innovation with metrics is needed:

Account for the cross-sectoral nature of social innovation
γ Include information from various sectors in society: public, private, third and household sector, in order to capture the hybrid sphere and cross-sector dynamics, because social innovations take place across boundaries of sectors in society. Traditional metrics and underpinnings fail to address this because the boundaries between sectors in society are blurred and the enormous “hybrid sphere” is overlooked in our traditional concepts, studies and surveys. We need metrics and underpinnings which are open to these ‘hybrid dynamics’.
Account for intangi-bility & context-specificy
γ Financial indicators are not enough, also indicators for intangible, subjective and context-dependent info should be included, because it contains valuable policy information/intelligence. Social innovation means different things to different people because a large part of the information on social innovation is difficult to codify in cold, objective, impersonal, outof context, standardised categories, indicators, Euros and «real numbers». Most social innovations would not have emerged when vulnerable people would have been treated merely as «numbers», or expressing their needs merely in Euro.

Stakeholders inputs & activities
→ The indicator-set should include those which capture the needs for social innovation, as well as indicators for the inputs and activities of stakeholders from various sectors which may generate and support social innovation (the potential resources, capabilities, networks, and framing activities which empower and transform). Social innovators are resource integrators who combine inputs from various stakeholders in society, and when their initiative meets the needs of vulnerable groups, it (directly and indirectly, intentionally and unintentionally) creates value for society as a whole. Insight in the needs and potential inputs for social innovation provides policy intelligence and options on how to promote interaction and to organise learning between potential stakeholders in society, e.g. address certain barriers or other systemic failures.

Survey Questions and Indicators capturing SI Initiatives
In order to apply the indicator framework at the level of social innovation initiatives, a pilot survey has been constructed to capture the most relevant information of the SIMPACT case studies (N = 55). The limited number of questions have been answered by the authors of the in-depth case studies and included questions on: the type of SI, actors involved, theme addressed, type of funders, objectives, input of resources, obstacles, and impact for various kind of stakeholders, including for instance: increased income, increased capabilities, increased networks and increased self-confidence. The answers to the survey have been used to construct indicators to describe and analyse SI at the micro-level of SI initiatives. The exemplary results presented below can serve policy learning.

Governments as funders
The economic impact related to a discharge of public budgets is rated high for social innovations which have a government agency as main funder, while the impact for the social innovator (including gained capabilities) is on average very low. This division of economic impact contrasts with social innovation cases which are mainly funded by NGOs or third sector because they have much higher rated impacts for the social innovator, and less in terms of reduced costs for public budgets. As a consequence, the long-term perspective of social innovations with a government agency as main funder is relatively low.

Governments as beneficiaries
Compared to investors from the third sector, public funders seem less interested in the innovation and economic capacity of the innovator (either to reward for the use of it, or invest in enhancing it). Governments appear to use the social innovation initiatives as an option to outsource social policy and generate benefits for their own budget, while the funding of the third sector also empowers the social innovators, and thereby facilitate initiatives’ long-term sustainability.

Radical Policy Innovation: Learning about new needs and addressing new groups of beneficiar-ies
The figure below illustrates the need to distinguish between different types of social innovation. On average social innovations in the form of products or services perform well as regards the economic impacts for the innovators which can be can be labelled incremental social innovators. In contrast, social innovations that address a new target group of vulnerable people are lagging behind in all impact fields, except economic impacts for the target group. In order to improve their long-term perspective, policymakers should therefore consider investing in the business capabilities of these more radical social innovators while reducing political, social and financial obstacles innovators often encounter.

Figure 7.
Impact profile by type of social innovation

NOTE
The average impact scores of SI cases is 0, indicated by the regular pentagon

Framework for Conducting Ex-Ante Impact Assessment
SIMPACT is not about developing new sophisticated approaches to match social and economic values for investors. A lot of work has been done in the hundreds of methods that have been developed over time. It is, however, of importance to select those building blocks and integrate these building blocks in such a way that social innovators (and other stakeholders) find solutions to deal with their decision making situation. In the project, this has resulted into a five step approach to ex ante assessment of social innovation. Figure 8 shows the main components of the framework.

Figure 8.
Five steps form ex-ante impact assess-ment to social inno-vation

Measureable Social Impact

How can you clarify your social goals and make them more measurable?
When looking at economic impact of a social innovation, one tries to identify changes in (business) output, value creation, employment levels, income levels and wealth measures. The measurement and estimation of these economic impacts can become a very complicated matter, requiring deep economic and econometric expertise. For most social innovators, this is way beyond of what they need. Economic impacts can be seen at the level of the economy, but also at other meso- and micro-levels. Impacts are not always tangible. In most situations, it will not even be possible to monetise impacts from a social investment. The impacts may also be manifold: unemployment risks may need to be balanced with gender discrimination. For most decision makers, it may not be sufficient to maximise certain social impacts, but rather to optimise different outcomes or to balance certain outcomes. All these outcomes must be calculated. It requires mixed methods to value the different kind of economic and social benefits connected to these investments. But making it even more complicated: assessors will need to check for the intention to change investments (is there any scope creep during the project?); are the results counterfactual, meaning that the social impact results would not have appeared without the investment?; what about the additional impact above what would otherwise have occurred naturally?; and has been accounted for alternative factors that may have induced the impact, for displacement effects on other social groups, and for possible drop-off effects over time (gradual reduction of impact over time)?

Balancing levels of sophistication
In the end, all this sophistication should be balanced by what the social innovator is trying to achieve (and who’s funds he or she is using). Common sense is a great good in such matters. Anyway, a rigid analysis does have its advantage in the sense that it helps to identify possible risks related to the future investments that may be planned. Not only the benefits are important, an impact assessment should also take into account which risks exist that may reduce the likelihood to achieve the social impacts. A good assessment will also deliver a risk management plan. A collaborative co-creative approach with stakeholders and other parties is needed to develop a risk management plan that can encompass all of these risks.

Translating Goals into Practical Action Roadmaps

How can you trans-late your goals into practical action roadmaps?
It is not sufficient to just identify the social objectives and the type of investment required. The LEFC case showed that from day one, some actions do not always appear to be the right choice. Numerous project lines were abandoned after several months, either because of too little support from the communes, either the project did not seem achievable within budget and time planning. For the LEFC, it became clear that they needed to be more systematic about thinking how the project lines support the goals they had identified. The technique of the «Theory of Change» was very useful for the fund to identify how the required impacts are linked to sub-goals and to the inputs in their project. Discussing these causal explanations was helpful to uncover the preferred impacts in the social innovation and the possible problems in the execution of the projects.

Dealing with the Stakeholders

How to manage the sponsors & stake-holders needed in your decision mak-ing?
Social innovation initiatives are not conducted in an isolated environment. Social innovation has a lot of sympathisers, but only very few stakeholders are prepared to fund or support the project when it starts. Together with the cases, we identified what the stakeholder networks were and how each of the stakeholders added (or influenced) value to the social innovations. It was helpful for each of the cases to see how extensive these stakeholder networks could be. Next, the instrument of «Value Network Analysis» proved supportive in mapping this tangible and intangible value exchange. The «Value Network Analysis» gives an overview of the network-as-is. To estimate the impacts, it is also necessary to have a clear view on how the stakeholders co-operate, share and exchange value in the social innovation.

Stakeholder in-volvement through co-creation
In estimating social and economic impacts, the involvement of stakeholders in a co-creation process is of prime importance. The impacts of a social innovation are not a simple given thing. Valuing impacts is a subjective process, it requires context and connection to the interests of stakeholders in the social innovation. Social innovators and other stakeholders need to co-create the impact assessment. The process should be done in such a way that the role of the stakeholders becomes clear. Borrowing from the «Measuring Impact Framework», stakeholders should only be integrated once the estimations have been prepared. Stakeholders should have a clear view on what they can bring in their ideas.

Co-creation as an Explorative Exercise

What kind of result can you expect from such an ex-ante im-pact assessment?
The following question is how to approach the ex-ante part of the impact assessment. Ex-ante means that the impacts should be predicted. One of the most developed predictive models is «Exploratory Modelling and Analysis». The lesson from this model for policymakers and investors is that the predictive exercise helps to understand what inputs help to influence social and economic outputs and outcomes, but also to see how ‘much’ of the actual outcome can be influenced. Using these lessons allows to build benchmarks such as, for example, the IRIS (Impact Reporting and Investment Standards) and GIIRS (Global Impact Investment Rating Systems). Scenarios can be elaborated and teach us how to deal with future change once these impact futures move in the direction of one of the calculated scenarios. Building these scenarios is also helpful for identifying the risks that possibly influence the achievement of the required economic and social impacts. It is important to understand which enablers and barriers exist for achieving the impacts. Within social innovation, the possible social benefits are more likely to happen. This means that to achieve these benefits, an impact assessment should also take into account which risks exist that may reduce the likelihood to achieve the social impacts.

SI Evaluation Toolbox
In conclusion, our conceptual framework aims to be a practical guide to both assessor and assessee by structuring the development and decision process. A toolbox has been developed, which consists of a series of steps sprung from our conceptual framework. Possible tools for performing a social impact assessment are not limited to those proposed in this toolbox and customisation is needed to provide a tailor-made ex-ante assessment of social innovation.
3.8 Interplay of Social Innovation, Welfare State & Market
In order to successfully shape future transition processes from micro level social innovation activities to the solution of macro level socioeconomic challenges it is necessary to better harness the societal and economic potential of the many dispersed local social innovations. This requires us to critically reflect and advance our welfare regimes and governing institutions with regard to social innovations’ impact on institutional change. Also, it is to be acknowledged that social innovations’ contribution to inclusive growth is essentially based on open innovation models characterised by distinct forms of interactions which, in turn, require behavioural shifts at the level civil society, public and private sectors.

New ways of thinking and alternative approaches are needed for dealing with European socioeconomic challenges. That is what social innovation is all about. As has been shown in the previous sections, social innovations as novel combinations of ideas and distinct forms of collaboration cover a broad range of practices that transcend levels of governance (micro, meso and macro), institutional boundaries and sectors. At the micro level the many small, locally embedded, initiatives address a broad range of distinct needs. By empowering vulnerable groups to fully participate in social, economic, cultural and political life they actively facilitate processes of inclusion. At the meso level social innovation is about institutional change. That is, social innovators as «rule breakers» challenge established institutions such as rules, laws, attitudes, and modes of governance. At the macro level social innovations imply a new division of labour between the sphere of politics, i.e. welfare regimes and the institutions that govern them, civil society and market-driven economy.

Social innovators – societies’ «hidden champions»?
We find a strong relationship between the institutional context, social innovation dynamics, objectives and impacts. Awareness, sharing attitudes, self-organisation, and solidarity are key motives for citizens to engage in social innovation activities. Given the limited scope of the social innovation initiatives, innovators’ success in developing alternative solutions is, however, often not recognised by the wider public.

Exploiting social in-novations’ potential
Forasmuch, one of the key challenge is to better harness the societal and economic potential of the dispersed and unrelated social innovation activities to facilitate the transition from small-scale local engagements to the solution of the socioeconomic challenges Europe is facing. To this end, SIMPACT has elaborated a toolbox to strengthen the economic capacity of social innovation activities, a social innovation ecosystem that functions as seedbed for stimulating, resourcing and sustaining social innovation including distinct modes of policy production as well as mechanisms to scale social innovations’ impact.

Social innovation contradicts rule-based rational
Inevitably, utilising social innovations’ societal and economic potential on the one hand means generating impact at the level of welfare regimes and governing institutions that are shaped by economic and social contexts, but on the other also contributing to inclusive growth.

Social Innovation & Welfare Regimes
Drawing on SIMPACT’s case studies locating social innovations in the welfare regime we find four distinct positions:

Social Innovations as «Niche Solutions»
Social innovation activities occupy niches of the welfare regime. Examples are different modes of self-organisation that partially depend on subsidies of the welfare system and aim at self-empowerment. Although such initiatives do not have an immediate effect on the welfare regime, they support beneficiaries to actively participate in social life.
Social Innovations as «Complementary Solutions»
Traditional welfare regimes are marked by rule-following behaviour that eschews experimentation, personal decision making and individual enterprising. Although to a certain degree required, related regulations, laws and rules impede responding to and build on individual needs and potentials. Social innovations fill this gap by empowering vulnerable people according their needs while utilising their specific strengths.

Social Innovations as «Embedded Solutions»
Social innovations as «embedded solution» are in the one way or the other integrated in the implementation of welfare regimes. Such embeddedness is associated to
γ initiating new modes of cooperation between different social services and other public actors,
γ bundling information,
γ connecting initiatives and facilitating the division of labour be-tween the projects,
γ strengthening the professional structure of the public service by training or better and more efficient use of vouchers
Just as «niche solutions», these activities do not result in direct institutional change but contribute to enhancing welfare regimes efficiency.

Social Innovations as «Experimental Solutions»
Experimentation is an inherent characteristic of social innovation. Although such practices challenge established welfare institutions, they seldom influence welfare regimes directly. As has been outlined in SECTION 1, it is the cumulative impact of many social innovations in a certain field, rather than the single initiative that facilitates institutional change.


From «Bureaucratic» to the «Enabling Welfare State»
It is precisely this variety of social innovation and related practices that present policymakers and civil servants with many practical and conceptual roadblocks for which they are ill prepared. The classic notion of the «bureaucratic», as enunciated by Max Weber, is one marked by rule following behaviour. Instead the state is organised around the application of formal rationality that seeks to replace the substantive rationality of everyday life and existing social practices. In our discussions with policymakers representing social innovation within their respective ministries, we found that this clash is palpable to them. They find themselves isolated in arguing for innovation and flexibility, whilst decision making continues to follow rule-based rational calculation with means and evaluations expressed in purely nominal terms. Social innovation highlights the difficulties and the possibilities that policy and policymakers face in moving from the «Bureaucratic» to the «Enabling Welfare State». The question is what needs to change in that transition and what kind of enabling state is required.

Key areas of change
showed clearly where some of the changes have to be made, and what new public forms are needed to enable social innovation.

→ States have to deal with a great complexity of actors and levels, meaning that they must handle diversity rather than hand down uniform macro-level policies.
→ A new, participative inclusive model of governance is required, one which operates within and across myriad interfaces, networks and micro groupings rather than seeing them as challenges and distractions. Some policymakers have begun to experiment with new modes of policy production and delivery, focusing on the creation of ecosystems capable of stimulating, resourcing and sustaining social innovation in ways that reflect both its contextual embeddedness and the creativity that underlies it.
→ One central issue is to find ways of sharing control within that diverse arena so as to empower social innovators in enabling change and making real, sustainable gains. This is the opposite of a zero–sum game in which one party gains control as another party loses it; sharing control, if done properly can add to the sum of power and maximise gains for all parties

Social Innovation & Inclusive Growth
Social innovations addressing vulnerable groups in society have an, as yet underestimated potential to contribute to the Europe 2020 priority of inclusive growth. That is, more and better jobs, helping people to anticipate and mange change through investment in skills and training, modernising labour markets and welfare systems, ensuring the benefits of growth reach all parts of the EU. According to SIMPACT’s findings, such community-based understanding of inclusive growth should consider the following aspects:

Integration and awareness
First, inclusive growth has to be based on the integration of seemingly disadvantaged people in the economic process. Companies’ awareness of social and economic inclusion needs to move beyond mere sponsoring, but requires commitment including the willingness and ability to drive workplace innovation.

Open innovation integrating civil so-ciety
Second, inclusive growth necessitates open innovations that integrate civil society in the innovation process through, for example, co-creation. For related practices it is, however, not enough to treat civil society just as another element in the innovation process, as is reflected in the debate of moving from triple to quadruple helix. Unemployed, migrants and other people affected by exclusion have the knowledge necessary to design solutions that lift them out of their constraint situation; they know about the shortcomings, needs and requirements clearly before markets recognise these, if at all. The very fact of promoting the empowerment of vulnerable people and their active participation in the innovation process as well as underlying social processes contributes to inclusion.

Complex interac-tions, evolutionary changes in markets & political leadership
Third, social innovation is embedded in a process of different and complex modes of interaction which are marked by competition, cooperation, conflict, and bargaining. These interactions involve a variety of actors from various sectors and fields of practice, acting at different levels and in specific contexts with their own rational. Forasmuch, achieving the goal of inclusive growth cannot be limited to the application of pure principles of market economy but should take into consideration social, economic, and contextual factors and dynamics. Rather evolutionary changes in the markets must be accompanied by political leadership in terms of framing inclusive growth irrespective of market failure. Social innovators have to outpace bricolage attitude and economically sustain their activities. Actors from public, private and third sector as well as civil society must overcome the current «silo»-thinking and associated deficit in strategic thinking to implement comprehensive solutions.

Knowledge sharing, imitation & coopera-tion
Fourth, co-evolution and mutual learning require an open and interactive flow of knowledge which is a matter of intellectual property rights in traditional economic thinking. Social innovations’ dynamics, however, are shaped by knowledge sharing, imitation, and cooperation. Overcoming the limits of locally embedded knowledge is crucial for social innovations’ contribution to inclusive growth. Public and private research organisations or social innovation hubs, for example, acting as intermediaries or else boundary spanners could facilitate the necessary knowledge flows and processes of mutual learning.

A new division of labour
Finally, inclusive growth is embedded in a broader discussion about a new societal division of labour between public and private sector, and civil society. Although exceeding the focus of SIMPACT activities, this is particular important for our understanding of the «economic underpinning» that goes beyond the mere marketisation of social innovation. Social innovation will realise its potential contribution to inclusive growth to the extent it can unfold its social and economic impact for vulnerable people as well as for society as a whole. This can only be achieved when civil society, public and private sector co-evolve, accompanied by changes of markets shaped by an institutional frame that incorporates social and economic factors as well as their interplay.

Potential Impact:
Europe 2020 identifies social innovation as an instrument for empowering citizens and paving the way towards smart, inclusive and sustainable growth. Likewise, the Digital Agenda for Europe seeks inclusion by tackling the digital divide. One of the cornerstones of the Innovation Union lies in its potential to reinforce social innovation. Yet social innovation has to realise its full potential in Europe. In comparison with profit-oriented innovations, the heterogeneous field of social innovation lacks systematic research capable of demonstrating its economic dimension to investors, policy makers and other stakeholders. It also lacks a support infrastructure of sufficient sophistication to maximise effectiveness and dissemination.

SIMPACT made a strong contribution to implementing the Europe 2020 strategy and the Innovation Union initiative firstly by addressing the existing research gap on the economic underpinnings of social innovation. Secondly, the project tackled today’s most pressing societal and economic challenges by investigating the ways in which social innovation can meet the needs of the vunerable and marginalised in society through their empowerment and (re )inclusion. Thirdly SIMPACT will lay the foundations for the implementation of tailored support infrastructures at all levels of governance. Recognition of the diversity of welfare regimes across Europe and particularly the specifics of the New Member States support the development of tailored, actionable solutions. SIMPACT’s strong emphasis on continuous stakeholder dialogue facilitated shared learning involving diverse constituencies.

In conclusion, SIMPACT contributed to advancing the knowledge base (see section 4.1) that underpins the formulation and implementation of relevant policies, achieving a critical mass of resources (see section 4.2) and actively engaging relevant stakeholders and practitioners in building a shared understanding of the enablers and potential of social innovation (see section 4.3).
4.1 Advanced Knowledge Base
SIMPACT’s research activities enhanced understanding of what works, how and why to successfully substantiate social innovations’ economic and social impact and how public policy at all territorial levels can facilitate such processes. To guarantee high-level impact achievement, the project has explicitly anchored the expected impact in the design of the project from the very beginning. SIMPACT has improved the knowledge base as following:

γ By elaborating a multidisciplinary theoretical framework for understanding the economic dimensions of social innovation throughout its lifecycle.
γ By generating new empirical knowledge on the economic dimensions of social innovation through in-depth, theoretically informed analysis of past successful and less successful social innovations.
γ By identifying drivers and barriers as well as opportunities for the scaling and diffusion of social innovations, enabling the development of a strong conceptual framework.
γ By developing indicators for measuring social innovations and tailored methods for evaluating their social and economic impact.
γ By elaborating modes of policy production, public policy instruments and guidelines.
γ By generating foresight knowledge through scenario building.

Exemplifications
Having elaborated a middle-range theory that combines evolutionary thinking with social innovation’s components, objectives and principles contributes to closing the existing knowledge gap on the economic dimensions of SI. Linking theoretical research with empirical evidence applying the new methodology of Social Innovation Biographies in combination with SI Business Case Studies and Meta-Analysis advanced empirically informed knowledge. Identified evidence of innovation processes, actors’ role, successful business models of social innovation has the potential to inform the creation of tailored concepts, tools and instruments. In addition, SIMPACT offered a new and elaborated vision on innovation processes, its drivers and barriers. This knowledge could be acquired both by social agents as well as by public sector.

In this light, current modes of policy production/implementation were challenged and a systemic approach to stimulating, resourcing and sustaining social Innovation was elaborated. It has potential to improve relations between policymakers and stakeholders through power sharing and open and inclusive dialogue. New perspective on indicators on SI at regional and European level is a challenge not sufficiently covered. However, SIMPACT project has produced a set of indicators to measure and classify regions according to the degree of Social Innovation Impact. New tools to boosting socioeconomic projects on SI offer a clear and adequate understanding on the scaling-up process to different types of agents. A chain of convenient and useful tools corresponding to methods for evaluating ex-ante impact are proposed to provide a systematic impact assessment framework for social innovations. These tools contribute to advancing the knowledge base necessary for informed decision-making by policymakers, intermediaries, and investors. Equally important, they have the potential to pave the way for supporting infrastructures in favour of accelerating social innovations.

The elaborated economic simulation model and derived SI scenarios are the first of their kind and are a novel contribution to generate actionable foresight knowledge. The modelling approach is complementary to the traditional and qualitative approach as well as empirical approach with evidence collection through case studies and social innovation biographies. It is expected to help policymakers and other SI stakeholders to anticipate medium-term impacts of social innovation as well as strategic choices influencing their development, and therewith, reduces innovation-related uncertainty.

4.2 Critical Mass of Resources
With regard to the European level a critical mass in terms of collaboration is achieved by the composition of the project Consortium unifying 12 partners from nine European countries, all well connected at regional, national, European and international levels. Achieving a critical mass in terms of networking with the public and private sector, civil society and the scientific community is ensured through the Consortium partners’ networks. All partners closely work together with regional and national ministries as well at the European and global level.

Exemplifications
The project provides an original account of characteristics and challenges of social innovation in the New Member States (NMSs) of the EU based on their welfare regime typology and social capital specifics, giving policy-makers as well as practitioners a theoretical backing and a decision-making departure point for strategising with the aim of devising social initiatives with boosted impact. Indeed, the identified dominant challenges for social innovation in each contextual setting in each of the NMSs points to a potentially most effective direction to be adopted by the policy-makers and practitioners to overcome or possibly avoid those dominant challenges, leading to smoother implementation of social initiatives. This is expected to reduce the time and the cost required for achieving expected positive outcomes from the intended social initiatives in those countries and prevent from the pitfalls which, although are common in the respective context, but are less addressed due to lack of theoretical clarity and transparency.

Besides, the SIMPACT team has applied parts of the conceptual framework in the context of the Nordic Council of Ministers Working Group on Demography and Welfare which focuses on the role of social innovation in finding new ways to respond to the challenges posed by out-migration and demo-graphic ageing in rural areas. More than 22 cases of social innovation have been identified and analysed. Findings have been communicated to the policy community at the municipality level. Moreover, social innovations were stimulated and further developed in the Dutch and Belgian context, helping the Dutch communes with estimating ex-ante impacts of investments in social innovations, resulting in more efficiency into city support for social innovations.

Furthermore, SIMPACT significantly broadened scope of its collaboration by setting up a LinkedIn group reaching to policy- and decision-makers as well as a Facebook page reaching out to actors from civil society. Equally important, SIMPACT’s «Actionable Knowledge Hub» contributed significantly to broad the projects’ reach (see figure below).

Figure 9. SIMPACT’s Website Statistics (01/2016 – 02/2017, total numbers)


Finally, SIMPACT intensive collaboration with other FP7 SI projects facilitated the sharing, transfer and further development of knowledge across Europe and helped to ensure that innovative frontier research in various disciplines benefits from dedicated and competent research beyond the project’s consortium. For example, SI Conference 2015: Pathway to Social Change with attracted 430 participants was organised the Austria’s Centre for Social Innovation (ZSI) in cooperation with four ongoing EU-funded social innovation research projects SI-Drive, TRANSIT, CreSSI and SIMPACT. It was planned and designed by these mutually complementary research projects on social innovation that reach out to world-wide experiences and concepts of social innovation. CrESSI and SIMPACT organised joint parallel sessions on the «Economic Underpinning of Social Innovation» at the International Social Innovation Research Conference «», 6-8 Sept 2015 in York and «Social Innovation in the 21st Century: Beyond Welfare Capitalism», 5-7 Sept 2016 in Glasgow. Moreover, SIMPACT collaborate with these projects on indicator development, on research methodologies and exchange of results

4.3 Involvement of Communities, Stakeholders & Practitioners
Continuous stakeholder dialogue, as an integral part of SIMPACT’s integrated learning cycle, involved social innovation stakeholders in the project’s research activities throughout the project term.

γ Policy makers and practitioners through policy dialogue workshops, action learning sets, policy briefs and the project’s LinkedIn subgroup on policies;
γ Statisticians and statistical experts by means of indicator labs
γ Intermediaries of vulnerable groups and innovators in form of stakeholder experiments;
γ The scientific community through participation in scientific conferences, scientific briefs, discussion papers and the project’s LinkedIn group;
γ Social innovators by means of social innovation biographies, business model dialogue workshops, and by pilot testing of the evaluation toolbox.
All three groups were represented in the Multidisciplinary Advisory Committee and received a continual flow of information on the project findings. They contributed expertise, experience and creativity to enrich the research activities. Putting stakeholder involvement at the heart of the project contributed to awareness raising and understanding the economic dimensions of social innovation, involved them in process of co-creation and learning and preparing the way for action to step up social innovations.

Exemplification
Vulnerable groups
γ 2 Small-scale Stakeholder Experiments gave vulnerable groups a voice by inviting representatives from intermediary organisations to participate consultation workshops where the 25 participants challenged the elaborated simulations models in several Delphi rounds.
Policymakers & Administrative Staff
γ 3 Policy Action Learning Sets engaged policymakers in progressive reflection, insight and learning relating to the nature and effectiveness of different policy approaches. Through expert facilitation, action learning sets contributed to empathy and co-operation between members who represent diverse case settings, leading to knowledge sharing, critical reflection and mutual support. It provided participants with an opportunity to reflect on and to refine practice within their own cases, and the experience gained during the process of refinement itself becomes the focus for discussion at subsequent Action Learning Set meetings
γ The 1st European SI Policy Forum facilitated the exchange of experiences, knowledge and competences related to social innovation policies and SIMPACT's results enabling to boost, scale and diffuse social innovation in Europe especially in private and public service sectors. It raised awareness and facilitated policy learning by understanding and initiating policy action.
γ The LinkedInGroup with its 141 members actively engaged policymakers from across Europe by reflecting and optimising their policies.
Statisticians
γ 2 Indicator Labs involved representatives of statistics organisations such as Eurostat, national/regional statistics offices and the OECD plus other FP7 social innovation projects. They facilitated the collaborative elaboration of indicator sets to measure the economics of social innovation and their integration into National Accounts through scoping, developing, feedback and refinement.
γ The piloting of the «SI Evaluation Toolbox» contributed to assessing the applicability, usefulness and refining the developed impact assessment tools. It helped public authorities to better understand the relevance of ex ante impact assessment.
SI practitioners
γ SIMPACT’s final conference engaged SI practitioners, academics and policymakers in interactive sessions.
γ The collection of Social Innovation Biographies actively involved social innovators in the research activities through interviews and discussions.
γ «SI Business Toolbox» workshops involved SI and business practitioners in the assessment, validation and improvement of the elaborated tools. In the moderated commenting and brainstorming session participants will provided their feedbacks, comments, suggestions and reflections.
Academics & SI Experts
γ Expert Panel on SI in the New Member States engaged 37 academics and SI experts from 9 CEE countries to reflect on the questions covering topics related to social capital, social innovation and welfare regime in their countries.
γ The participation in several scientific conferences involved academics from various disciplines in the discussion of SIMPACT methodologies, approaches and findings.
γ Feedback into the disciplines of the consortium partners and therewith engagement of students was achieved by integrating SIMPACT results into university lectures.

4.4 Main Dissemination Activities
SIMPACT provided new theoretical, empirical and actionable knowledge on the economic underpinnings of social innovation plus appropriate tools supporting policy makers, innovators, investors, intermediaries and other stakeholders to accelerate the social and economic impact of social innovation targeting the most vulnerable in society. Main dissemination activities comprised:

γ 9 SIMPACT Working Papers
γ 5 Newsletters
γ 2 Statistics Briefs
γ 6 Articels
γ 6 Book chapters
γ Final conference
γ 1st SI Policy Forum
γ SIMPACT final brochure «Boosting SI’s Social and Economic Impact»
γ SI Business Toolbox, SI Evaluation Toolbox & SI Policy Toolbox
γ SIMPACT Website
γ Feedback into single disciplines through university courses
γ Conference presentations, poster sessions, flyers, etc.

The following statistic summarises the dissemination activities throughout the project term and the audience reached.

Table 3.
Dissemination by Countries addressed
Countries addressed # Activities Size of Audience
EU 88 20’131
Canada 3 510
Global 10 3’778
France 4 435
Germany 3 1’130
Italy 5 175
Netherlands 1 400
New Member States 3 100
Scotland 1 15
Spain 10 19’065
Total 128 45’739

Table 4.
Dissemination by Type of Activity
Type of Activity # Activities Size of Audience
Flyers 5 10700
Press releases 7 2000
Posters 3 630
Web sites/Applications 18 19870
Oral presentation to a wider public 25 4673
Organisation of Conference 4 620
Organisation of Workshops 13 277
Oral presentation to a scientific event 37 2998
Interviews 3 3400
Articles published in the popular press 13 571
Total 128 45’739



Table 5.
Dissemination by Type of Audience
Type of Activity # Activities Size of Audience
Civil society 6 521
Policy makers 2 35
Scientific commu-nity (higher edu-cation, Research) 41 5174
Scientific commu-nity (higher edu-cation, Research) - Civil society - Pol-icy makers 34 2614
Scientific commu-nity (higher edu-cation, Research) - Civil society 3 480
Scientific commu-nity (higher edu-cation, Research) - Policy makers 10 4115
Scientific commu-nity (higher edu-cation, Research) - others 30 32’775
Industry 1 25
Media 1 521
Civil society 6 N/A
Total 128 45’739


4.5 Exploitation of Results
At project start SIMPACT’s Website was launched to gain visibility and make the project’s activities and results publicly available. Furthermore, the coordinator provided an intranet platform on Microsoft Sharepoint for the consortium partner’s internal communication and documentation. The website was continuously advanced with the knowledge and tools developed within the project lifetime as well as linked to the project’s LinkedIn groups and Facebook. The final version of the website contains all insights gained plus knowledge and application ready tools generated throughout the project term including the SI business, policy and evaluation toolboxes, the indicator sets, the scoreboards, the categorisation of social innovation, good practice examples, the SI case database, etc. The website also includes specific knowledge corners for policy makers, social innovators, investors and scientists. Thematic and spatial pathfinder functions eases the access to the knowledge of interest for the respective stakeholders. It sustains the SIMPACT’s added value beyond the project term and will be further maintained by IAT.

The project toolboxes (see previous chapter), are provided through open access via the SIMPACT website:

γ SI Business Toolbox
http://simpact-project.eu/tools/toolbox_business_web.pdf
γ SI Evaluation Toolbox
http://simpact-project.eu/tools/toolbox_evaluation_web.pdf
γ SI Policy Toolbox
http://simpact-project.eu/tools/toolbox_policy_web.pdf

Exemplification of envisaged exploita-tion
TUDO has recently submitted a journal article summarizing analytical results of SIMPACT. The article presents insights on ecosystems of social innovation and is currently under review by the journal “Social Enterprise Journal” (ISSN: 1750-8614 website: http://www.emeraldgrouppublishing.com/sej.htm).

Moreover, TUDO has built later project ideas on the findings of SIMPACT. We submitted proposals in the calls “H2020-SC6-CO-CREATION-2016-2017”, “H2020-NMBP-2016-2017” and “H2020-SC6-REV-INEQUAL-2016-2017”, building on SIMPACT findings related to social innovation.

Thirdly, TUDO is currently working on a second analysis of the SIMPACT data. In a project for the German Federal State North-Rhine-Westphalia we are analyzing social innovation biographies and business case studies. The results will be exploited to draft “local social innovation laboratories” in the federal state.

CIS: Within the New Member States of the EU, the toolbox developed in the project regarding socioeconomic impact assessment of social innovations and social investment programmes, will (at least) be used in the Czech Republic for various purposes. These for example include evaluation of social innovation initiatives supported by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, as well as developing a project regarding data platform in the country for impact assessment of social initiatives mostly undertaken by the civil society organizations. The project, named SIMPAKT, has already been approved for support by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, and will launch around mid-2017. Furthermore, some of the impact assessment tools are being considered in developing evaluation plans for the Czech Agency for Social Inclusion, a body in the government office as expertise provider dealing with social inclusion of marginalized communities across the country.

NORD: The SIMPACT approach has been influential in the design and planning of a continuation (2017-2020) of the Nordic Working Group’s focus on social innovation and its role in service provision in rural areas. The Nordic ministers for regional affairs have decided to include social innovation and social entre-preneurship in rural development as one of the priority areas in its Nordic co-operation programme for regional development and planning 2017-2020. Nordic Council of Ministers’ new Thematic Group on Sustainable Rural Development will continue where the Nordic Working Group on Demography and Welfare ended, and work on investigating the potential of social innovation in strengthening the vitality of rural communities.

TNO jointly with IAT: Continuation of scientific support to social innovations in the development of new project proposals: ECOSYSTEM (Co-Creation03-proposal); ICT-11 (CAPS). Building on the work of SIMPACT, our institute will further develop the results into new project proposals. The SIDRIVE-projects remains an important outlet, also for the SIMPACT-results. SIDRIVE will only finish at the end of 2017.

Based on SIMPACT results POLIMI recently submitted the following papers: A case based analysis of the SI process in real-life contexts; the reactive and proactive features of social innovation: insights and recommendations.

Under the lead of IAT a Special Issue on the «Bridging Local Embeddedness and Global Dynamics – The Economics of Social Innovation» in the European Planning Studies is under preparation with contributions from most consortium partner plus CrESSI, SI-DRIVE and TRANSIT.

IAT currently prepares articles for two special issues: First, a methodology paper critically reflecting on Social Innovation Biographies to be published in the European Policy and Social Innovation Review. Second, two articles for a Special Issue «Innovation and societal transformation―What changes when the ‘social’ comes in?» in the International Review of Applied Economics. One article will focus on an economic model on the influences of macro-economic and regional factors on social innovation. The second paper will business models and innovation: Organisation, environment, interactions in social purpose organisations versus business firms.

List of Websites:
http://www.simpact-project.eu/

Related information

Reported by

WESTFALISCHE HOCHSCHULE GELSENKIRCHEN, BOCHOLT, RECKLINHAUSEN
Germany
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