" Innovation - broadly understood as fresh thinking that creates value - triggers change. That's not always comfortable. And that is why Gustave Flaubert noted in his dictionary: "innovation, always dangerous". I am sure that Euclid members with their many courageous actions to bring about social change, can confirm that. For innovation policy makers, the danger is of a different nature: being comforted by the simple fact that they are promoting change. I am grateful to Euclid Network for constantly challenging my ambition and for your constructive support to what the EU does for social innovation on our way to an Innovation Union"
Dr. Peter Dröll, European Commission, Research and Innovation Department, 20th September 2012
In the media:
The public sector should support social innovation, not seek to define it: Sweden is exploring how forms of social innovation can solve persistent social problem, The Guardian, by Euclid Network's Swedish board member Sophia Lovgren.
Social enterprise is at the core of European economic strategy,The Guardian, by Euclid Network's Filippo Addarii.
Social innovation gains new support in Europe, The Guardian, by Euclid Network's board member Chris Sigaloff
Other revelant reading "So is Sweden more innovative"
When the winter comes in, the squirrel has already stored 3000 nuts in different tree holes that provide the food storage to overcome the harshest season of the year. The nuts have been collected in the past months and will be shared with the other members of the community if someone is in need. The squirrel is small but has adapted to live in all sorts of environments, including European capitals. It's agile, collaborative and last but not least independent.
On the other hand, the cow needs to take shelter in the stable during winter. It would not survive without the farmer taking care of all its needs. Its lifeis quiet and relaxed. It just needs to feed, reproduce, and produce milk. But it consumes a lot of resources and life always ends in the abattoir. Its life depends entirely on others for maintenance and aims. Cows life all together but don't collaborate. The farmer is in charge.
This metaphorical comparison aims to help civil society leaders and social entrepreneurs picture the transformation our society is going through: less leadership and help from governments and corporations, and the need for self-organisation, funding, support and development of solutions to social problems. We have to rethink our strategy, collaborate and innovate in order to transform from the cow to the squirrel.
The traditional resources, such as public funding and sponsorships, are shrinking but new opportunities and synergies are emerging.
During these two days we want to explore how individual organisations and people have endorsed new visions, developing new strategies and tools for survival and success, and how the Europe Union can foster and support such pioneers through the new socio-economic policies, namely social entrepreneurship and social innovation.
More about the sessions:
Read an overview of the upcoming ICT and Civic Engagement session here - by Prof. David Lane, ECLT.
Find out more about SIE's session "Joining the dots – how can social innovation change whole systems?" by Louise Pulford, SIX, here.