Plenary 1: Social Innovation and Sustainable Livelihoods

24-May-2016 Return to conference program

9:45am to 11:00am

Room Z209 / Main Auditorium


Christian Seelos
Visiting Scholar
Stanford University


Watanan Petersik
Asia Capital Advisory
Johan H. Andresen
Owner & Chairman
Kim Salkeld
Head of the Efficiency Unit
HKSAR Government, Efficiency Unit
K. Anil Kumar
Executive Trustee & CEO
Axis Bank Foundation

Session Description
Social innovation is the process of creating and enacting new ideas to address social issues. People’s livelihoods are constrained by different bundles of local factors: economic, cognitive, normative, power and politics. Social innovation attempts to identify and address which of these challenge the realization of sustainable livelihoods the most.

As of late, social innovation has become an ideology- innovation is good, but more innovation is better. This has lead to the phenomena of innovating for the sake of innovating. Consequently, innovators sometimes fail to consider productive perspectives on social innovation that facilitate strategizing, resource allocation, and learning.

This plenary session explores the role of social innovation in addressing the challenge of sustainable livelihoods, with panellists discussing and debating the following questions:

Key Takeaways

  • What is the role and potential of social innovation for different local challenges and where might slower, careful, incremental approaches be more adequate?
  • How has the social investing community utilized social innovation? What is the resulting impact?
  • What does the need for scaling the outcomes of social innovations imply for funders of innovations and for innovation teams? Can innovation and scaling be treated separately or do we need to consider them as mutually dependent processes?

*** Session Report – P1: Social Innovation and Sustainable Livelihoods (Click to download)