Social innovation is an important component of being resilient – new ideas will keep a society adaptable, flexible and learning. Therefore, the better the understanding of the conditions that enable innovations not only to emerge, but to take hold, become routinized within our broader social structures, and then to face disruption or disturbance, the greater the capacity humans will have to be resilient. One of these conditions provides space for the role of the state and public policy. At the broadest level, certain political philosophies privilege emergence and innovation more than others. Within all regimes, however, numerous options exist for policy tools that could, and in many cases, have been used to foster social innovation. The important question for a policy maker is which policy lever and when? This paper will use resilience theory and the adaptive cycle to argue that different policies have greater impact at specific points of time in the cycle of social innovation. Therefore, recognizing the distinct phases of social innovation is central to understanding which policy will be most suitable.
Research Professor on society, culture, art, cognition, critical thinking, intelligence, creativity, neuroscience, autopoiesis, self-organization, complexity, systems, networks, rhizomes, leadership, sustainability, thinkers, futures ++
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