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Social Innovation: Beyond the Hype

The concept of Social Innovation has received an incredible amount of attention in the Netherlands the past few years. Not only academics, but also policy makers and politicians have embraced the concept as the number one solution for the ‘Dutch Innovation Disease’. Advocates of Social Innovation suggest causality between Social Innovation and an increase in labor productivity and quality of work. In the long  run, Social Innovation would even enhance the innovation ability of Dutch organizations. Nevertheless, the concept is lacking empirical validation and the question is whether Social Innovation can live up to such big promises? That is why in this research the following question is answered: 

What are the tools and methods used for Social Innovation and do they have an influence on the quality of work and labor productivity?

This research goes beyond the hype of Social Innovation by unraveling the theoretical concepts behind the phenomenon. By means of a literature study this research has built a  comprehensive theoretical foundation of Social Innovation including attributes and indicators. Subsequently, in the second part of this research this theoretical framework has been tested by means of a meta-analysis of secondary data in the form of case reports on Social Innovation practice.

To read the full thesis, please follow the link.