Table of Contents

The International Handbook on Social Innovation

The International Handbook on Social Innovation

Collective Action, Social Learning and Transdisciplinary Research

Elgar original reference

Edited by Frank Moulaert, Diana MacCallum, Abid Mehmood and Abdelillah Hamdouch

The contributors provide an overview of theoretical perspectives, methodologies and instructive experiences from all continents, as well as implications for collective action and policy. They argue strongly for social innovation as a key to human development. The Handbook defines social innovation as innovation in social relations within both micro and macro spheres, with the purpose of satisfying unmet or new human needs across different layers of society. It connects social innovation to empowerment dynamics, thus giving a political character to social movements and bottom-up governance initiatives. Together these should lay the foundations for a fairer, more democratic society for all.

Chapter 2: Social innovation in governance and public management systems: toward a new paradigm?

Benoît Lévesque

Subjects: business and management, social entrepreneurship, development studies, development studies, geography, human geography, innovation and technology, innovation policy, politics and public policy, public policy, social policy and sociology, comparative social policy, sociology and sociological theory, urban and regional studies, regional studies, urban studies

Extract

While the decades following the Second World War saw a proliferation of social innovations in public administration, the term ‘innovation’ as such was rarely mentioned. Instead, emphasis was placed on the main political reforms that led, among others, to the establishment of diverse types of welfare states in the developed countries, in particular through defamilialization and decommodification of public services (Esping-Andersen 1990). However, over the past two decades, reference to innovations in public administration and public services management has become more commonplace. This growing interest in social innovations can be largely explained as the outcome of reforms inspired by New Public Management (NPM), a new paradigm that emerged in the 1980s (Osborne and Gaebler 1993). In this chapter we begin by providing an overview of social innovations and show how a great number of these have in fact emerged from the new NPM approach.

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