Social innovation in welfare practices: identification, idealisation and shame

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In the Nordic welfare states, social innovation is currently seen as key to improving and renewing services and sustainable products, to changing and empowering people’s lives, to enhancing public services and to encouraging private–public–civil collaborations. In this article, I provide insights into
the psychosocial fabric of this current development, pointing out how identification, idealisation and shame become descriptive of the psychosocial landscape in social enterprises. Social enterprises invest in creating both social and economic value as well as reinvesting their profits for the good of
their enterprise, staff, volunteers and the local community. Through an examination of case studies, I illustrate how managers and staff identify with and idealise their social innovative missions, but find it difficult to fulfil their aspirations in the face of (neoliberal) societal and organisational contexts and conditions
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Psycho-Social Studies
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)235-245
Publication statusPublished - 31 Aug 2020

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