Facilitating social innovation in urban living labs: challenges and perspectives for practical improvement

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademic


In this paper we critically assess the attempts of the Amsterdam University of applied Sciences (AUAS) to facilitate social innovation through living labs. These living labs are seen as local innovation milieus with potential to deliver new governance arrangements making it possible to develop context specific solutions to complex and intertwined social, sustainability and economic problems that modern cities are facing. As developing new routines, relationships, positions and rules between stakeholders – central in social innovation - will require institutional change, learning, and more specifically second-order learning, are a key element of the AUAS living labs. In terms of conceptualisation this paper is exploratory in nature. We have identified trust as one of the central enabling conditions for learning and a number of issues that need to be accounted for when attempting to facilitate learning at the operational level (e.g. stakeholder involvement, the utilisation of scientific research and the end-user focus). The practice of the AUAS living labs show the
challenges that can arise when in the complex and open environment of the living lab. Of central importance are project leaders who can manage the expectations of participants while retaining focus on the needs of end-users, provide understandable insight into the causes of the issues at hand and are able to build coalitions between key actors.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationResearch day conference proceedings
Subtitle of host publicationOpenLivingLab days
PublisherEuropean Network of Living Labs
ISBN (Electronic)9789082102758
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2016
EventOpen Living Lab Days - Concordia University, Montreal, Canada
Duration: 23 Aug 201626 Aug 2016


ConferenceOpen Living Lab Days


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