Social innovation education

Stream #12

Chairs: Gordon Shockley (Arizona State University), Aristidis Protopsaltis (Institut Für Lern-Innovation)

Social innovation education (SIE) is a crucial area as the field of social innovation matures. Business and management, social work, public administration and affairs, sociology, philanthropic studies, engineering, and other fields have incorporated social innovation into their undergraduate and graduate curricula. In fact, social innovation permeates the curricula for colleges and universities as students in all majors and concentrations are clamoring to study social innovation. And SIE is not just a phenomenon in tertiary education as not only secondary and primary schools, but also non-traditional academic settings are also teaching principles of social innovation. 

The ubiquity of SIE in different fields and institutional settings yields disparate effects. On the one hand, it is encouraging as students at virtually all levels and in every field of inquiry are being exposed to the theory and practice of the citizen-sector addressing social problems from the bottom-up as government, corporate social responsibility, and philanthropy cannot (or do not) solve those problems. On the other hand, the ubiquity of SIE can be chaotic and potentially detrimental as there are no standards or even an agreed set of competences for SIE recognized across curriculum. The purpose of this stream is to convene teachers from different fields and institutional settings to share pedagogy, methods, experiences, and insights for SIE. 

Some potential topics for papers and presentations in the SIE stream are: 

  • Innovative teaching and learning models 
  • Liberal-arts approaches to SIE 
  • Bridging theory with experiential insights and expertise 
  • Social innovation competencies 
  • The role of technology in SIE 
  • SIE policy recommendations 
  • Theoretical frameworks to support the embedding of social innovation education 

These topics are only suggestions and not exhaustive.