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Why Inclusive Innovation can change the world

Dr Robyn Klingler-Vidra

Reader in Entrepreneurship & Sustainability, King's Business School

21 March 2023

We face huge challenges in our lifetime, from climate change and social justice, to inequality and the housing crisis. New innovations can provide solutions for these problems, for example by repurposing resources or through the development of new technologies. As a result we often associate innovation with Silicon Valley visionaries, who create high tech solutions to solve global issues.

But this can present its own problems. What happens when those ‘heropreneurs’ have no lived experience of the challenges they’re looking to solve? And what happens when they put people first and environmental considerations second? Research by Dr Robyn Klingler-Vidra, Alex Glennie and Courtney Savie Lawrence has found that this kind of innovation can, inadvertently, accentuate inequality and drive environmental degradation.

Their research reveals the importance of Inclusive Innovation, which empowers local communities and demonstrates that low tech or social solutions can boost productivity and drive social and environmental good.

Their Inclusive Innovation framework is built on three key principles:

  1. inclusion is necessarily about people and the planet, and so ecological concerns need to be at the center
  2. innovation should be understood more broadly than information technology, so that low-tech and social organization innovations are equally counted
  3. and innovation is a collaborative process in which problem owners are crucial problem-solvers

To find out more visit, where you can download a PDF of the Inclusive Innovation book.

In this story

Robyn Klingler-Vidra

Robyn Klingler-Vidra

Reader in Entrepreneurship & Sustainability

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