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15 Social Innovation Tools, Guides, And Whitepapers

Photo By: Poptech

We’ve put together a list of our favourite social innovation tools, guides, and whitepapers. From three questions to ask yourself before starting a project, to an in-depth e-book exploring the methods of social innovation, we think there is something for everyone in this resource list! We’d love to hear how you have used these social innovation tools to create a positive impact. And if you’ve found any other tools that have been helpful to you in creating social change, we’d love to add them to the list- just post them in the comments!

Tools, Guides, and Whitepapers:

Running Idea Competitions - This page gives answers to your most commonly asked questions about hosting idea contests. Learn how you can solve your next social challenge with an innovation competition.

DIY Social Innovation Toolkit - Created by Nesta, DIY stands for Development, Impact, and You. It is a social innovation tool that helps innovators working in the social sector deliver better ideas.

My Manual For Social Innovation - This social innovation tool includes an introduction to social innovation and entrepreneurship. The guide includes case studies and examples.

Harvard Social Innovators Self Assessment Tool - This short quiz from the Harvard School of Social Innovation helps you determine the potential for social innovation in your sector. Social Innovation Guide and More - Download a free social innovation guide, get access to social innovation events, and view upcoming conferences on this excellent resource page for social innovation.

Design in Social Innovation: What Works and What Could Work Better - A research paper from Nesta, outlining their findings in the public and social innovation sectors. Very interesting read with many considerations for the future of social innovation and design thinking.

The Extensive Guide To Social Innovation - A white paper that explores how to use open innovation and crowdsourcing to make a positive change.

Doing Social Innovation: A Guide For Practicioners - This short guide is aimed at practitioners – those currently or considering engaging with social innovations. This guide aims to provide an overview of what social innovation is, who does it and why it’s important.

Making Good Our Future - A whitepaper for the European Commission exploring policy and social innovation in manufacturing.

Tools For Social Innovation - This blog post from innovation experts asks three questions to social innovators to guide them in their projects. A great article to read before embarking on a new project.

Social Innovation Lab - The SILK method deck is a handy collection of methods, principles and prompt cards, which can be used by project teams, designers, project managers, social science researchers, community and economic development experts alike.

McKinsey on Society: Social Innovation - A collection of whitepapers from McKinsey that tackle issues in social innovation, philanthropy, and social business issues.

Social Innovation: What it is, why it matters and how it can be accelerated - A research paper from Oxford, exploring how we can improve societies’ capacities to solve their problems.

The Open Book of Social Innovation - Another great resource from Nesta! This e-book covers many different methods and tools for pursuing social innovation. If you’re looking for an in-depth resource to help evaluate which methods and tools can work for you, definitely read this social innovation tool.

Social Innovation Europe - A collection of articles outlining and discussing the various methods and tools that Social Innovation Europe uses.