Productive System, Land, and Social Dialogue: Why Innovate?

By Jacques Garnier


This paper aims to show that the concept of social innovation cannot be reduced to a simple transposition into the social field of the concept of innovation developed by economic theory. It differs in two respects. First, in contrast with the current dominant conceptualization of innovation, social innovation aims to promote changes other than technological or commercial ones and focus instead on social needs, solidarity, and justice in the hope of generating well-being and promoting progress. Second, because social innovation is not significantly implemented through research and development but rather through relational processes and interactions and initiatives from below. Specifically, the notion of territory has become a privileged instance, where social innovation can emerge from below. Supported by data collected in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region of France, the paper contributes to the analysis of innovative capacity by offering the outline of a typology. JEL Codes: R11, R58, J52, J61


  • regional productive system
  • innovation
  • labour relationships
  • spatiality
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