SocIEtY- Social Innovation – Empowering the Young for the Common Good

Duration: 01/2013 - 01/2016
Status: completed
Research area: Sustainable worlds of work and life
Key project staff: Bettina Haidinger, Ruth Kasper, Alban Knecht, Karin Kuchler, Roland Atzmüller
Funded by: European Commission, DG Research & Innovation

“Social Innovation–Empowering the Young (SocIEtY) for the Common Good” will both focus on and integrate disadvantaged young people into the research process to improve their quality of life and to foster social innovation. Therefore SocIEtY will extend the given informational basis for designing and implementing policies to reduce inequalities by giving voice and opportunities for developing aspirations to young people facing multifaceted inequalities while living in deprived city districts. The approach is to bring to the fore young persons’ concerns and voices about their self-perception and social participation in society. To accomplish these ambitious research tasks, the research strategy will benefit from the complementarities between qualitative and quantitative methodologies, reflected in the close interconnections between the Work Packages (WPs). SocIEtY will refine a coherent theoretical and methodological framework for the whole project on the basis of the Capability Approach. As a second step a documentary analysis and interviews with relevant political stakeholders and a longitudinal analysis of EU-SILC data will be carried out. Additionally, national and regional data for each partner country (WP3) for evaluating existing policies towards inequalities will be analysed. 11 analyses of social support networks (WP4) will be carried out, scrutinizing the strategies and policies of local actors in deprived city districts of each partner country.
Finally, SocIEtY will develop an innovative participative research methodology (WP5) bringing different stakeholders and different narratives together. An aim of this empirical instrument is to enable deliberative processes in which every participant has equal opportunity to voice their concerns and aspirations with regard to the common good. Traditional empirical research is combined with a participation methodology, broadening the informational basis for social innovation in public policies.