Creative destruction for all!

In the 1940s the austrian economist Joseph Schumpeter presented the concept  of “Creative Destruction”, a way to explain the emergence of innovation through entrepreneurship.

According to Schumpeter the hidden forces in the marketplace through the creativity of the entrepreneurs develop new consumers, products, and production methods which finally favor economic growth. Some years later in 1962 Everett Rogers, a professor of communication studies, popularized a theory in which he argued that diffusion is the process by which an innovation is communicated over time among the participants in a social system.

According to british foundation Nesta, social innovation is about developing new ideas to meet social needs through new products, services, organisational models or public services. So this kind o innovations don’t respond strictly to capitalist needs and are new practices that aim to meet social needs in a better way than the existing solutions in working conditions, education, community development, governance, ecology or health.

An important finding in the past decade of innovation studies has been the recognition of the role of communities outside of the boundaries of firms in creating, shaping and disseminating technological and social innovations. From an UX Design perspective, it is normal to embrace open innovation techniques centered on a participatory design approach which invites all stakeholders (e.g. customers, employees, partners, citizens, consumers) into the design process as a means of better understanding, meeting, and sometimes preempting their needs. Economist Eric von Hippel found that user innovation occurs when individuals or firms that actually use a product or service develop what they need for themselves.

But according to the researchers at Sinnergiak the investigation and policies of social innovation need an approach that overcomes the individual perspective of social entrepreneurs, and that assumes a systematic conception of change, based on regional organizations. Basque researchers Alfonso Unceta and Xavier Barandiaran write that despite the lack of agreement able to establish a consensual definition of what we understand social innovation to be, it definitely takes into account the diversity of social relationships implicit in the whole process of innovation and the difficulties in resolving and attending to increasingly complex social problems. Therefore the contemporary need for all stakeholders to be taken into account in the the process of Schumpeterian creative destruction…

*(Picture: Lisbon Declaration on Social Innovation & Social Inovation infographic).

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