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The Return of Social Innovation as a Scientific Concept – by Frank Moulaert and Abid Mehmood

October 8, 2013

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Social Innovation has been receiving much media attention these days. It prominently features in contemporary policy discussions and political debates. It is often applied to explain a variety of ‘things’ ranging from actions for microfinance to healthcare provision, and from governance affairs to policy innovations. Many social movements are also seen pursuing social innovation, or at least flirting with the notion. As such it has become a flagship term for some specific bottom-up styles and models in management practice, collective action, economic activity, and social policy etc. But the question remains, Does social innovation have a scientific status? Or is it just a fashionable slogan that can be used à la carte? Two of the four editors of The International Handbook on Social Innovation investigate.

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