Our digital economy and the need for new narratives

19 October, 2017

What are the implications of the digitalization of the economy for the way our societies are organized and governed? Why do we need new roles when our society changes? How can research and practice benefit each other to have more impact in society? In this blog, DRIFT-researcher Sarah Rach elaborates on the answers, as discussed by participants of the Transformative Research and Practice Session we organized last June with the Social Innovation Community, Impact Hub Rotterdam and Deeleconomie NL. 

The questions above and other topics of interest were discussed by a group of entrepreneurs, activists and researchers working in the collaborative and sharing economy in the Netherlands during a day-long workshop in Rotterdam on the 8th of June 2017 under the auspices of the Social Innovation Community.

While the new economy might take many forms, the participants converged on two issues: it will include the digital and it will focus on interpersonal values and human needs. To make the economy greener, more social and human in the long run, we need powerful and widespread narratives that speak to a large audience, including those who will be affected by a new economic paradigm. Where social innovators and entrepreneurs build alternative realities on the ground, researchers offer a space for reflection. Realizing a new economy thus requires new roles and practices from all actors in society and implies a fundamental change in all sectors, including academia.
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Read the complete summary here.