Translocal empowerment in transformative social innovation networks
In this new paper Flor Avelino, Julia Wittmayer, Adina Dumitru, Carla Cipolla and Iris Kunze conceptualize the mechanisms of empowerment from a social psychology perspective, and empirically explore how people are empowered through both local and transnational linkages.
Researchers Flor Avelino and Julia Wittmayer published a new paper on “Translocal Empowerment in Transformative Social Innovation Networks” in the journal of European Planning Studies, together with Adina Dumitru, Carla Cipolla and Iris Kunze. The paper is part of a special issue on the topic of «Bridging Local Embeddedness and Global Dynamics – The Economics of Social Innovation». In this publication, the authors share insights from the TRANSIT research project on transformative social innovation, which included case-studies of 20 translocal networks and 100+ local initiatives across 25 countries.
This paper refers to 5 translocal networks and aims to contribute to public and academic discussions on empowerment and social innovation by conceptualising the mechanisms of empowerment from a social psychology perspective, and empirically exploring how people are empowered through both local and transnational linkages, i.e. translocal networks.
Building on different power theories in relation to social change, combined with self-determination theory and intrinsic motivation research, (dis)empowerment is conceptualised as the process through which actors gain (or loose) the capacity to mobilise resources to achieve a goal. This conceptualisation serves to formulate questions for the empirical analysis of translocal networks that work with social innovation both at the global and local level. A total of five networks are analysed: FEBEA, DESIS, the Global Ecovillage Network, Impact Hub and Slow Food. The embedded cases-study approach allows an exploration of how people are empowered through the transnational networking while also zooming in on the dynamics in local initiatives. In the final section, conceptual and empirical insights are synthesised into a characterisation of the mechanisms of translocal empowerment, and challenges for future research are formulated.
Avelino, F., Dumitru, A., Cipolla, C., Kunze. I. & Wittmayer, J. (2019). Translocal empowerment in transformative social innovation networks, European Planning Studies. Available online: https://doi.org/10.1080/09654313.2019.1578339
March 12, 2019