Designing an incubator for social innovations in libraries: Learnings from the Research through Design approach

Ladislava Zbiejczuk Suchá,Roman Novotný. Tomáš Štefek, Aldo de Moor, Jirina Belehradová Svitáková, Eliška Bartošová. Petr Škyrík, Barbora Buchtová, Eva Víchová

pp. pp. 215 - 236, download






Promoting social innovations in libraries requires a new approach to designing innovation programs. In order to provide the effective learning program on social innovations for libraries, the Research through Design methodology was selected as a tool for setting the program for the needs of participants as well as for providing scalable approach to designing innovation programs aimed at increasing the innovation competencies of librarians. Design thinking and the design process are a suitable basis for incubating new socially innovative services. However, the design process needs to include the subsequent phases of the social innovation life cycle, such as demonstrating the impact, its successful presentation or scaling. For a higher social impact, it is necessary to strengthen the importance of participatory community network mapping as a key input in solving community problems and the role and future direction of the library. When designing, it is necessary to integrate all these components into one whole, and when facilitating, it is necessary to pay attention to all these parts. Four runs of the incubation program are described as well as their results, outputs, and learnings from the whole designing process. Gasparini’sconcepts of openness, dialogical spaces and temporality have proven to be applicable also for designing the incubation programs for public libraries. Within the incubation programs attention should be paid both to user-oriented and inner organizational social innovations. 



Keywords: libraries, social innovations, design thinking, incubator, participatory community network mapping, library leadership, research through design 


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