Everyday technology and social innovation
The world has changed a great deal over the past few decades and nowadays, everyday technology is increasingly being used to achieve social innovation. Technology such as computers, smartphones and tablets has made the internet more accessible than ever and the internet is where most social innovation takes place these days.
Social innovation doesn’t have a single definition and it can be used to refer to both innovations which have a social purpose and social processes that lead to innovation. An example of a well-known innovation which has a social purpose is Facebook, while an example of a social process that leads to innovation Linux or any other open source project or software.
The rise of the internet has made it easier to bring similar minded people together and it has thus promoted social innovation on a large scale. Where just 20 years ago people still had to contact each other by phone or fax or meet each other in real life, but nowadays it’s possible to have direct contact through the internet and conference calls and video calls can be made from just about any communication device we own.
Politicians also realize that social innovation is an important new form of innovation that can benefit both society and enterprises. In Europe as well as the US special funds have been created for social innovations and governments have reserved millions of dollars for social innovation. Social innovation can benefit education, health care, industry and the economy as a whole.