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Book part
Publication date: 9 December 2016

Bethany Alden-Rivers

This chapter proposes a reconceptualization of undergraduate education to support the development of students as agents of positive social change. Social innovation

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter proposes a reconceptualization of undergraduate education to support the development of students as agents of positive social change. Social innovation education is put forward as a new pedagogy for the twenty-first century.

Methodology/approach

The chapter outlines a series of studies carried out at the University of Northampton between 2014 and 2015 to investigate social innovation education as a pedagogical design and practice for undergraduate curricula. Drawing on phenomenography, systematic literature review, and theory building, this chapter sets out conceptual, theoretical, and practical frameworks for designing and facilitating social innovation education.

Findings

Research findings include an ontology for understanding the concept of social innovation education, as well as a set of graduate attributes for designing learning for social change. A model of pedagogical praxis is proposed that supports the development of teaching and learning toward a more critical and socially impactful approach.

Originality/value

Despite some similarities to entrepreneurship and enterprise education, social innovation education is distinctive in its focus on social change-making with or without financial gain. Not only does this chapter present a set of abstract and practical tools for embedding social innovation in an undergraduate program, but also it provides a possible methodology for institutions who wish to embody particular principles within their curricular offerings.

Details

Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Education
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-068-8

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Article
Publication date: 9 November 2015

Bethany Alden Rivers, Alejandro Armellini, Rachel Maxwell, Sue Allen and Chris Durkin

– The purpose of this paper is to propose a theoretical framework to support the embedding of social innovation education in existing academic programmes.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose a theoretical framework to support the embedding of social innovation education in existing academic programmes.

Design/methodology/approach

By adopting Conole et al.’s (2004) methodological approach to reviewing, mapping and modelling learning theory, this study addresses four research questions: how can social innovation education be defined? Which learning theories best support social innovation education? How do such learning theories relate to existing models of learning in higher education? What implications does a social innovation pedagogy have for learning design?

Findings

Findings suggest that social innovation education is supported by a praxis that is grounded in critical learning theory, transformational learning theory and epistemological development. By extending Conole et al.’s (2004) model of learning theory, the present study proposes a “zone of pedagogical praxis for social innovation education” that supports learning design on a more critical plane.

Research limitations/implications

The proposed model of learning may be of interest to other universities as they work towards stronger thinkers and stronger communities.

Practical implications

Using a theory-informed model for learning design nurtures a pedagogical praxis and underpins the development of a practical toolkit for designing social innovation education.

Originality/value

The findings of this study will provide a point of reference for other higher education institutions as they look for guidance on embedding principles of social innovation into their curricula.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 5 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

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Article
Publication date: 29 May 2020

Katharine McGowan, Andrea Kennedy, Mohamed El-Hussein and Roy Bear Chief

Reconciliation between Indigenous peoples and the Canadian plurality has stalled. While the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s (TRC) Calls to Action could be a focusing…

Abstract

Purpose

Reconciliation between Indigenous peoples and the Canadian plurality has stalled. While the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s (TRC) Calls to Action could be a focusing event, creating a window of opportunity for transformative social innovations; we see coalescing of interest, social capital and investment in decolonization and indigenization in the proliferation of professorships, programs, installations and statements. However, Blackfoot (Siksika) Elder Roy Bear Chief raised significant concerns that Indigenous knowledge, experiences and people are not yet seen as relevant and useful in higher education; such marginalization must be addressed at a systems level for authentic reconciliation at any colonial university. The purpose of this paper was to explore this dual goal of exploring barriers to and opportunities for Indigenous knowledges and knowledge holders to be valued as relevant and useful in the Canadian academy, using a complexity- and systems-informed lens.

Design/methodology/approach

Local Indigenous Elders provided guidance to reflect study purpose and target audience of academics, with an approach that respectfully weaved Westernized research methods and co-learning through indigenous knowledge mobilization strategies. This analysis extends results from a qualitative grounded theory study to explain social processes of professors and administrative leadership in a Canadian mid-sized university regarding barriers and facilitators of implementing TRC Calls to Action. This further interpretation of applied systems and panarchy heuristics broadens understanding to how such micro-social processes are positioned and influence larger scale institutional change.

Findings

This paper discusses how the social process of dominionization intentionally minimizes meaningful system disruption by othering indigenous knowledge and knowledge holders; this form of system-reinforcing boundary work contributes to rigidity and inhibits potentially transformative innovations from scaling beyond individual niches and moments in time. Elders’ consultation throughout the research process, including co-learning the meaning of findings, led to the gifting of traditional teachings and emerging systems and multi-scale framework on the relevance of indigenous knowledges and peoples in higher education.

Research limitations/implications

This study was performed in one faculty of one Canadian institution; an important and potentially widely-present social process was identified. Further research is needed for greater generalizability. Conditions that led to this study are increasingly common across Canada, where at least one third of higher education organizations have explicit indigenization strategies and internationally where the rights and self-determination of indigenous peoples are growing.

Social implications

Insights from this study can inform conversations about social innovation in institutional settings, and the current systems’ resistance to change, particularly when exploring place-based solutions to national/international questions. These initiatives have yet to transform institutions, and while transformation is rarely rapid (Moore et al., 2018), for these potential innovations to grow, they need to be sustainable beyond a brief window of opportunity. Scaling up or deep within the academy seems to remain stubbornly elusive despite attention to the TRC.

Originality/value

This study contributes to a growing literature that explores the possibilities and opportunities between Indigenous epistemologies and social innovation study and practice (McGowan, 2019; Peredo, McLean and Tremblay, 2019; Conrad, 2015), as well as scholarship around Indigenization and decolonization in Canada and internationally.

Details

Social Enterprise Journal, vol. 16 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-8614

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Article
Publication date: 29 July 2014

Antonio Padilla-Meléndez, Ana Rosa Del Aguila-Obra and Nigel Lockett

Several studies have investigated the factors affecting innovation in medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) at different levels. However, research into the characteristics of…

Abstract

Purpose

Several studies have investigated the factors affecting innovation in medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) at different levels. However, research into the characteristics of the entrepreneur (individual level) in social economy enterprises (SEE), and the relationship to innovation is scarce. The purpose of this paper is to build upon previous innovation literature to analyse SEE innovativeness.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper empirically analyses data from 193 face-to-face interviews with the founder/owner/managing director of small (zero to nine employees) SEE in Andalucía, Spain. A semi-structured questionnaire was produced using the literature review. To ensure the reliability of the data collection and the consistency of the results, several researchers reviewed the codification and analysis of the answers. Quantitative analyses were performed on the data, including descriptive statistical analysis and multivariate analysis (factorial for innovativeness construct validation, multiple regression, cluster, and discriminant). The software SPSS IBM PASSW Statistics 18 was used.

Findings

Considering the individual factors, it was determined that a proactive attitude towards innovation and a degree-level education were positively related to SEE innovativeness and that these were the most significant factors considered. The identification of attitude towards innovation was perhaps not surprising; one might expect a relationship between proactiveness and innovativeness. Furthermore, this result is consistent with the positive impact exerted by entrepreneurial characteristics, such as entrepreneurial confidence and adaptability, or SME entrepreneurs’ proactive personality and prospector strategy orientation towards their firms’ innovation.

Research limitations/implications

This study has a number of limitations. First, the study is an exploratory study of innovativeness in SEE in a limited geographical area. Second, the fact that the interviews were conducted using a semi-structured questionnaire limited the opportunities for obtaining more detailed information regarding the factors affecting innovativeness in SEE. Third, other variables may have been used as control variables, such as firm age. Sector was used as control variable and it was found as not significant. Fourth, other statistical analyses, such as hierarchical linear modelling, would benefit the results, as different levels of analysis would be considered simultaneously. Fifth, other components of entrepreneurial orientation would render the results more complete.

Practical implications

The research findings suggest that SEE would benefit from degree-level people with proactive attitudes towards innovation. Clearly, attitude and education are important aspects of the individual's mindset. This study demonstrates that the mind sets of the owners of SEE, in terms of both education and attitude, positively impact innovativeness. At least in SEE, degree-level entrepreneurs with positive attitudes towards innovation run more innovative firms. The challenge for regional policy makers is to look beyond the formal education system to promote innovation skills programmes for social and economic impact.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to the entrepreneurship and innovation literature by identifying the importance of developing individual-level skills as well as formal education in order to foster innovation in SEEs.

Details

International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, vol. 20 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-2554

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Article
Publication date: 10 August 2015

Bethany Alden Rivers, Alejandro Armellini and Ming Nie

The purpose of this paper is to propose an attributes framework for embedding “Changemaker” – a university initiative for promoting social innovation and social impact …

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose an attributes framework for embedding “Changemaker” – a university initiative for promoting social innovation and social impact – across the disciplines at the University of Northampton.

Design/methodology/approach

The study is based on the authors’ (2015) phenomenographic study that proposed five different conceptions of Changemaker held by academic staff: (1) Changemaker as institutional strategy; (2) Changemaker as critical thinking, perspective shifting and problem solving; (3) Changemaker as employability; (4) Changemaker as social betterment; and (5) Changemaker as personal transformation. The present study explores pedagogic literature to identify skills, behaviours and attributes associated with each of these five categories.

Findings

Findings from this literature review inform a set of Changemaker attributes, which offers a framework to consider skills and behaviours associated with the five conceptions of Changemaker.

Research limitations/implications

The conceptions of Changemaker, that form the basis of the Changemaker attributes, represent the beliefs of teaching staff at the University of Northampton. Despite inherent limitations, the approach of using practice-based empirical findings to develop pedagogical tools may be of direct benefit to other education providers as they develop their own models for teaching and learning.

Practical implications

The Changemaker attributes will be used by the University of Northampton during the design, approval and review of courses to ensure that social innovation and social impact is embedded across the disciplines. Academic staff can refer these attributes when designing assessments and for inspiration towards innovative teaching practice.

Originality/value

The findings of this study will provide a point of reference for other higher education institutions as they look for guidance on embedding social innovation and social impact into their curriculum.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 5 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

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Article
Publication date: 13 August 2018

Javier Castro-Spila, Rosa Torres, Carolina Lorenzo and Alba Santa

The purpose of this paper is to devise an experimental lab like infrastructure in the higher education connecting social innovation with sustainable tourism.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to devise an experimental lab like infrastructure in the higher education connecting social innovation with sustainable tourism.

Design/methodology/approach

In order to model a laboratory of social innovation and sustainable tourism lab (SISTOUR-LAB), the method of agile research was employed. This method involves the creation of successive and accumulative prototypes of four kinds: conceptual, relational, functional and transferable. Thus, agile research enables the integration of different social perspectives into the same prototype in a recursive manner.

Findings

The SISTOUR-LAB is a work-based learning strategy that allows for the development of a mapping process on tourism vulnerabilities (linked to opportunities for social innovation); the development of experimental training in prototyping social innovations on sustainable tourism; the design of hybrid social innovation business models linked to sustainable tourism; and the development of a relational model of evaluation linking together social innovation competencies with processes of transition toward sustainable tourism.

Research limitations/implications

The SISTOUR-LAB is a prototypical lab that combines social innovation and sustainable tourism in an experimental setting. The SISTOUR-LAB has been modeled based on the agile research method, but it will be necessary to test it empirically to stabilize the model. Once stabilized, the model shall lead to a better understanding of the relationship between work-based learning, social innovation and sustainable tourism in the area of higher education.

Practical implications

The SISTOUR-LAB has four implications: teachers: the SISTOUR-LAB provides teachers with a setting for the development of experimental education models that connect the problems of conventional tourism with social innovation in order to foster new learning environments oriented toward sustainable tourism; students: the SISTOUR-LAB enhances the employability of students since it connects them with agents and demands of touristic transition, while also fostering entrepreneurial development by means of improving the acquisition of social entrepreneurship competences for sustainable tourism; organizations: the SISTOUR-LAB provides an experimental setting for the prototyping of social innovations so as to assist organizations in the formulation of models, prototypes and evaluations that facilitate the transition toward sustainable tourism; policymaking: the SISTOUR-LAB promotes the design of evidence-based public policies, which fosters inclusive models of innovation and the regional monitoring of transitions toward sustainable tourism.

Originality/value

There exist little reference to the link between social innovation and sustainable tourism in the academic and institutional literature. The SISTOUR-LAB is a work-based learning strategy that fosters the structuring of experimental relations between social innovation and sustainable tourism by integrating touristic organizations to the development of competencies in higher education. The SISTOUR-LAB has programmatic and prospective value. It can be considered as a guide for the development of generative competencies, i.e. competencies that generate social innovations that impact chain triggers transitions toward sustainable tourism.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 8 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

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Article
Publication date: 28 January 2014

Meril Ümarik, Krista Loogma and Külliki Tafel-Viia

The purpose of this paper is to conceptualize the implementation of educational reform processes by applying the concept of social innovation. The paper proposes a model…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to conceptualize the implementation of educational reform processes by applying the concept of social innovation. The paper proposes a model of social innovation and test its applicability in the context of Estonian vocational education reform using two case studies of the school re-organization as an example.

Design/methodology/approach

A case study approach has been applied in the empirical study. Different data collection methods have been used including semi-structured interviews with the various change actors, observations and analysis of written documents.

Findings

The integrated model of social innovation proved to be a fruitful analytical tool. By focusing on five central aspects – the trigger of change, central change agents, social mechanisms facilitating the adoption of change, implications and social gains – it was possible to explain two school re-organization processes and the reasons behind their success or complications.

Practical implications

The analysis of the cases outlined some lessons that can be learned for the future planning and implementation of school reforms. School changes are more easily adopted if actors experience it as useful and rational, school staff are involved in the process as early as possible and the adoption is facilitated by building certain social mechanisms and network structures into the policy implementation process.

Originality/value

The paper makes a contribution to the literature on educational reform by applying the concept of social innovation. Up until now, the concept of social innovation has remained rather underused to explain the process of implementing and adopting reforms, and in particular, it is rarely used in the context of analyzing educational reforms.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 52 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 3 April 2017

Peter Serdyukov

The purpose of this paper is to present an analytical review of the educational innovation field in the USA. It outlines classification of innovations, discusses the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present an analytical review of the educational innovation field in the USA. It outlines classification of innovations, discusses the hurdles to innovation, and offers ways to increase the scale and rate of innovation-based transformations in the education system.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is based on a literature survey and author research.

Findings

US education badly needs effective innovations of scale that can help produce the needed high-quality learning outcomes across the system. The primary focus of educational innovations should be on teaching and learning theory and practice, as well as on the learner, parents, community, society, and its culture. Technology applications need a solid theoretical foundation based on purposeful, systemic research, and a sound pedagogy. One of the critical areas of research and innovation can be cost and time efficiency of the learning.

Practical implications

Several practical recommendations stem out of this paper: how to create a base for large-scale innovations and their implementation; how to increase effectiveness of technology innovations in education, particularly online learning; how to raise time and cost efficiency of education.

Social implications

Innovations in education are regarded, along with the education system, within the context of a societal supersystem demonstrating their interrelations and interdependencies at all levels. Raising the quality and scale of innovations in education will positively affect education itself and benefit the whole society.

Originality/value

Originality is in the systemic approach to education and educational innovations, in offering a comprehensive classification of innovations; in exposing the hurdles to innovations, in new arguments about effectiveness of technology applications, and in time efficiency of education.

Details

Journal of Research in Innovative Teaching & Learning, vol. 10 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2397-7604

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Article
Publication date: 12 February 2018

Javier Castro-Spila

The purpose of this paper is to propose a new framework for developing social innovation competencies in social sciences within the agenda of the Relational University. It…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose a new framework for developing social innovation competencies in social sciences within the agenda of the Relational University. It explores the educational strategy promoted by the Social Innovation Excubator (SIE), an experimental social sciences lab that provides students with a work-based learning scenario focusing on the solution of social problems.

Design/methodology/approach

This conceptual paper explores a new learning strategy to promote the Relational University. This exploration designs an experimental infrastructure named SIE. This infrastructure promotes the link between work-based learning and social innovation to develop four key competencies: heuristic, epistemic, relational and experimental skills.

Findings

There is little attention in the literature about work-based learning and social innovation. The conceptual framework provides a program on Social Innovation Capitalization (SIC) in the framework of the SIE. This framework provides a process of four phases to prototype social innovations: exploration, experimentation, exploitation and evaluation as a process to boost social innovation skills.

Research limitations/implications

The conceptual framework of Relational University is an innovative and integrative model (companies, social organizations, public sector and civil society) that develops a work-based learning strategy through SIE infrastructure. The SIE has a strong implication for social sciences developing an experimental space to explore, exploit and evaluate local social problems.

Practical implications

The SIE infrastructure and the SIC program promotes a new strategy in social sciences to boost employability (new competencies), entrepreneurship (pilot social organizations) and intra-entrepreneurship (social innovation in organizations).

Originality/value

This paper proposes a conceptual and empirical framework to develop the Relational University through a new learning strategy linking work-based learning and social innovation. This practical framework covers a lack in the work-based learning perspective opening a new line of research linked to social innovation.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 8 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

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Article
Publication date: 3 July 2020

Praveena Chandra, Martin Tomitsch and Maryanne Large

The capability to create and manage innovations is recognized as an important skill not only for entrepreneurial activities but also for the survival of organizations. The…

Abstract

Purpose

The capability to create and manage innovations is recognized as an important skill not only for entrepreneurial activities but also for the survival of organizations. The last few decades have seen a noticeable growth in innovation education programs across the world. Innovation education is on the cusp of moving from being an optional subject to becoming a part of the core curricula. Given these recent developments, it is timely to review scholarship on innovation education carried out to date. The purpose of this paper is to present a review of the literature on innovation education programs.

Design/methodology/approach

This article employs a systematic and reproducible thematic analysis of the literature.

Findings

The review finds innovation education to be an emerging field with multiple concepts and frameworks in need of consolidation. Additionally, there is a marked dominance of this subject in traditional domains such as engineering, business, medicine and little or no presence in nontraditional domains such as humanities or social sciences. Challenges remain in the field for the development of standardized effectiveness measurement techniques.

Originality/value

This article puts forward a case for considering scholarship on innovation education as a unique field on its own and examines previous work in this domain to understand the emerging frameworks, pedagogy, evaluations and definitions. By doing so, the article aims to offer guidance for the adoption of innovation education, as well as creating a foundation for further research in this area by highlighting the gaps in the existing literature.

Details

European Journal of Innovation Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1460-1060

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