Social innovations are ground-breaking developments that seek to solve social problems or satisfy social needs better than traditional approaches. They are factors of social change which need to be understood as processes. New approaches require social acceptance in order to achieve the degree of prevalence that will allow them to be socially effective. Indeed, we cannot truly speak of social innovation until something has reached this degree of prevalence and effect. In the European Union, the issue of social innovation is often associated with social entrepreneurship, i.e. with the persons and organisations who implement social innovations. Impact measurement and scaling are being discussed intensively across Europe. These debates can potentially also have implications for the organisation of social services in the EU member states.
Social innovation and providers of social services in Europe
The Observatory’s work on this subject has included new EU initiatives with regard to social entrepreneurship as well as social innovation and their impact on the provision of social services. The newsletter provides an overview of social innovation and its potential impact on the provision of social services.