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conference logoThe History and Future of Social Innovation Conference

Adelaide, 19–21 June 2008


Edited by Gerry Bloustien

Published online by the Hawke Research Institute, University of South Australia, Magill, SA, 2009.

These conference proceedings have been peer reviewed.
ISBN 978-0-86803-826-1

Conference welcome

Geoff Mulgan, Adelaide Thinker in Residence, 2008

Innovation used to be talked about mainly in relation to such things as microchips and new drugs, science parks or the latest in genomics. But it's increasingly recognised that innovation matters just as much in other fields, from public services to civil society. Indeed social innovation of this kind is arguably even more important to the long-term success of societies like Australia than innovation in technology.

South Australia has a long and proud tradition of being at the forefront of this kind of social innovation. That's why this conference has been organised, to look at what's been learned here in Australia and from around the world. It will examine case studies, theories and practical models. And it will feed into important steps that the state of South Australia is taking to support social innovation in the future.

Societies have always innovated. But systematic research on social innovation – and how promising ideas become real – is very recent. That's what makes this field so extraordinarily exciting. It's bringing together the best of so many disciplines, from history and sociology to economics and political science. And it's bringing new insights into profound processes of social change. I'm confident that this conference will be one of the milestones in the emergence of a field that is rapidly becoming more prominent all around the world.


History in social innovation

Margaret Anderson and Mandy Paul
In search of a history of social innovation in Australia
Full text (PDF 1 MB)
Abstract (PDF 13 kb)
Biography (PDF 71 kb)

Stephen Forbes
How botanic gardens changed the world
Full text (PDF 636 kb)
Biography (PDF 35 kb)

Mark Henley
Success in social innovation in SA: What has happened? What has worked?
Full text (PDF 1.13 MB)
Abstract (PDF 13 kb)

Rob Manwaring
A collaborative history of social innovation in South Australia
Full text (PDF 1.47 MB)
Abstract (PDF 76 kb)
Biography (PDF 73 kb)

Models in social innovation

David Cappo
South Australia's social inclusion initiative: result-driven social innovation
Full text (PDF 256 kb)

Patrick Lees
Complexity and 'fuzziness' in dynamic social systems
Full text (PDF 583 kb)
Abstract (PDF 12 kb)

Amy Morgan
Interview with Tess Minnett, Duck Flat Community Garden Coordinator
Full text (PDF 49 kb)

Rick Sarre
Social innovation, law and justice
Full text (PDF 872 kb)
Abstract (PDF 14 kb)
Biography (PDF 72 kb)

Gregory Selinger and Ilana Dadds
Challenging old ideas: Manitoba's partnered approach to social policy and governance
Full text (PDF 1.19 MB)
Abstract (PDF 13 kb)
Biography (PDF 75 kb)

Education in social innovation

Graham Francis and Naomi Arnold
Children's centres for early childhood development and parenting
Full text (PDF 1 MB)
Abstract (PDF 13 kb)
Biography (PDF 79 kb)

Kinberley Kammermann and Ania Karzek
Oxygen: a breath of fresh air in the South Australian public sector
Full text (PDF 674 kb)
Abstract (PDF 89 kb)
Biography (PDF 10 kb)

Susanne Koen with Phillipa Duigan
Forging brighter futures: innovative approaches to improving prospects for at-risk young people
Full text (PDF 1.22 MB)
Abstract (PDF 14 kb)

Vic Korobacz and Irina Ferouleva
Innovations in South Australia's higher education profile
Full text (PDF 494 kb)
Abstract (PDF 12 kb)

Alison Mackinnon and Simon Robb
'To be able to see a future': hope and the utopian imagination of marginalised youth
Full text (PDF 1.09 MB)
Abstract (PDF 11 kb)

Allan O'Connor
Foresight, social innovation and entrepreneurship: some issues for education
Full text (PDF 450 kb)
Abstract (PDF 13 kb)
Biography (PDF 70 kb)

Kelvin Trimper and Stan Salagaras
Educational services: a key element in the creation of successful communities
Full text (PDF 1.09 MB)
Abstract (PDF 13 kb)

Youth in social innovation

Gerry Bloustien
Social innovation at the grassroots: pathways towards social inclusion through music for disaffected youth and those at risk
Full text (PDF 1.13 MB)
Abstract (PDF 11 kb)

Helen McLaren, Christine Gibson, Fiona Arney, Dorothy Scott and Louise Brown
Sowing the seeds of innovation: exploring the utility of diffusion of innovation theory for child and family welfare programs
Full text (PDF 1 MB)
Abstract (PDF 13 kb)

Technology and thinking in social innovation

Janet McIntyre-Mills
New directions for social wellbeing through extending deliberative democracy to enhance representation
Full text (PDF 1.22 MB)
Abstract (PDF 29 kb)

Denis A (Tony) O'Malley
Transaction costs and the governance of social innovation
Full text (PDF 721 kb)
Abstract (PDF 11 kb)
Biography (PDF 72 kb)