Linking innovation for impact

Nicholas Gruen, economist and chair of The Australian Centre for Social Innovation, talks about the value of social innovation, and the contribution it can and does have on society at large.  He debates the ways in which social innovation and entrepreneurship impact the way we think about public purpose, and in particular, wants to encourage institutions to gather more meaningful evidence of on-the-ground outcomes:

“[Organisations need to]…come down to the level of what’s happening on the ground, get curious and then try and rebuild systems so that the systems actually listen to the evidence that’s being produced on the ground, rather than insist that the ground produce evidence in the form that their systems are used to taking on board.”

About Nicholas Gruen

Dr Nicholas Gruen has advised two Australian Cabinet Ministers, directed the Business Council’s New Directions program and sat on the Productivity Commission. He is founder of economic policy consultancy Lateral Economics and Peach Financial. He is a frequentnewspaper columnist and media commentator and a prolific blogger at Club Troppo.

He is Chairman of the Australian Centre for Social Innovation, Online Opinion –an internet forum for opinion on political and cultural matters –and medical ICT startup Specialist Link. He was the founding chairman of Kaggle, a Melbourne ‘big data’ start up now based in San Francisco. He is also a board member of Sustainability Victoria and the Federal Government’s Innovation Australia.

Twitter: @NGruen1

60-second snapshot

Nicholas Gruen on linking innovations

Nicholas Gruen on social knowledge

Conversation links and resources

Government as Impresario: Emergent Public Goods and Public Private Partnerships 2.0: Harvard lecture


Adam Smith on the Invisible Hand

Family by Family

Rosabeth Moss Kanter on How to use convening power

Gather: The Art and Science of Effective Convening by the Rockerfeller Foundation

The Reach Foundation


Weavers project