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Building Back Better: The Role of Social Innovation
September 30 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm EDT
ABOUT THE BUILDING BACK BETTER SERIES
As we continue to be transformed by the far-reaching effects of the COVID-19 virus, we have the opportunity and the imperative to build back differently to create a better world, departing from practices which have gotten us to the challenging place we now find ourselves.
Whereas the mainstream now grants that sustainability and social impact are essential economic considerations as we build resiliency and learn from the pandemic’s recession and devastation, at GCNYC we know that simply layering “sustainability” and “social impact” onto business as usual is neither effective nor transformative enough to clean up and move past the deleterious effects of still-mainstream business practices. This trimester’s practice series examines how to transform business from within, by utilizing organizational models selected and designed to harbor innovative and collaborative pathways towards social and environmental good.
GCNYC and the Center for Social Impact and Innovation is excited to present Building Back Better, bringing experts from business and the academy to share practical insights for social innovators seeking to create successful, transformative organizations founded upon equity and inclusion.
THE ROLE OF SOCIAL INNOVATION
To launch the Center’s action-focused Building Back Better series, we are pleased to welcome two researchers from the Glasgow Caledonian University’s Yunus Centre for Social Business and Health—Simon Teasdale, Assistant Vice Principal Social Innovation, and Professor of Public Policy and Organisations, and Michael Roy, Professor of Economic Sociology and Social Policy.
A popular (mis)conception is that social entrepreneurs recognise injustice, rip apart existing social structures and replace these with more equitable systems. However, while we see many examples where social entrepreneurs enhance existing systems, or fill institutional voids – for example, the extension of credit to poor people – it is very difficult to find examples where structures have indeed been ripped down and replaced. Systems appear more resilient than the literature suggests. Insufficient attention, we argue, has been paid to the dynamic interaction between social entrepreneurs and the systems they seek to change – particularly how systems ‘fight back’. In this seminar we draw from social movement theory to develop a dynamic model showing how the discursive systems-change strategies of social entrepreneurs are the constantly evolving product of complex engagement (via. frame disputes) with internal and external stakeholders. We discuss how the ways in which social entrepreneurs respond to counter-framing impact on their ability to create different types of systems change. In conclusion we argue that existing approaches to understanding how social entrepreneurs negotiate tensions, as found in the literature on hybrid organizing, may have focused too heavily on strategies to maintain organizational longevity at the neglect of how such approaches lead (or do not lead) to systems change. We thus make the case for greater integration of systems-change (social movement) and strategic (organizational hybridity) literatures.
We are excited to host Simon Teasdale, Assistant Vice Principal Social Innovation, and Professor of Public Policy and Organisations at Glasgow Caledonian University, and Michael J Roy, Professor of Economic Sociology and Social Policy at the Yunus Centre for Social Business and Health at Glasgow Caledonian University, as featured panelists.
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