Societal innovation at the interface of the state and civil society

V.V. Lehtola, Pirjo Stahle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


The need to adapt to economic globalization and “wicked” problems such as climate change and poverty presents enormous challenges to modern developed societies. These challenges call for new solutions, not only in the form of technological or business innovations, but also through society-wide reform and renewal. In this paper, we outline a societal innovation framework to better understand the stage on which these societal challenges are being played out. Our approach builds on the classical view that considers innovation, an (radical or incremental) improvement that is both novel in its context and deployed by people. These societal innovations change the interface of the state and civil society for stakeholder benefit.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)152-174
Number of pages23
JournalInnovation : the European journal of social science research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • societal innovation
  • innovation systems
  • innovation politics
  • civil society
  • stakeholder
  • state


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