University of Oulu

Ravazzoli, E.; Dalla Torre, C.; Da Re, R.; Marini Govigli, V.; Secco, L.; Górriz-Mifsud, E.; Pisani, E.; Barlagne, C.; Baselice, A.; Bengoumi, M.; Dijskhoorn-Dekker, M.; Labidi, A.; Lopolito, A.; Melnykovych, M.; Perlik, M.; Polman, N.; Sarkki, S.; Vassilopoulos, A.; Koundouri, P.; Miller, D.; Streifeneder, T.; Nijnik, M. Can Social Innovation Make a Change in European and Mediterranean Marginalized Areas? Social Innovation Impact Assessment in Agriculture, Fisheries, Forestry, and Rural Development. Sustainability 2021, 13, 1823.

Can social innovation make a change in European and Mediterranean marginalized areas? : social innovation impact assessment in agriculture, fisheries, forestry, and rural development

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Author: Ravazzoli, Elisa1; Dalla Torre, Cristina1,2; Da Re, Riccardo2;
Organizations: 1Institute for Regional Development Eurac Research, Viale Druso, 1, 39100 Bolzano, Italy
2Department of Land, Environment, Agriculture and Forestry (TESAF), University of Padova, Via dell’Università, 16, 35020 Legnaro, Italy
3European Forest Institute, Mediterranean Facility (EFIMED), St. Antoni Maria Claret, 167, 08025 Barcelona, Spain
4Forest Science and Technology Center of Catalonia (CTFC), 25280 Solsona, Spain
5The James Hutton Institute, Craigiebuckler, Aberdeen AB15 8QH, Scotland, UK
6Department of Sciences of Agriculture, Food Natural resources and Engineering, University of Foggia, 71121 Foggia, Italy
7Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), Subregional Office for North Africa, les Berges du Lac 1, Tunis 1053, Tunisia
8Wageningen Economic Research, Prinses Beatrixlaan 582-528, 2595 BM The Hague, The Netherlands
9Department of Economics, Management and Territory, University of Foggia, 71121 Foggia, Italy
10Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research (WSL), 8903 Birmensdorf, Switzerland
11Centre for Development and Environment, University of Bern, Mittelstrasse 43, 3012 Bern, Switzerland
12Cultural Anthropology Programme, University of Oulu, 90570 Oulu, Finland
13Department of Economics, University of Ioannina, University Campus, 45110 Ioannina, Greece
14School of Economics, Athens University of Economics and Business, 76 Patission Street, 104 34 Athens, Greece
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 14.3 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, 2021
Publish Date: 2021-04-23


Social innovation (SI) impacts are long-term changes that affect different dimensions of territorial capital (i.e., economy, society, environment, governance) for the territory in which SI occurs. Yet, systematic empirical evidence and theoretically sound assessments of the impacts of SI are scarce. This paper aims to fill the gap and assess the different aspects of SI’s impacts in European and Mediterranean areas that are characterized by marginalization processes. To assess the impacts of SI in marginalized areas, we use the evaluation framework developed within the Social Innovation in Marginalized Rural Areas (SIMRA) Horizon 2020 project and apply it to nine SI initiatives related to the fields of agriculture, fisheries, forestry, and rural development. Our findings show that SI produces cross-sectoral (societal, economic, environmental, and governmental) and multi-level impacts (on individuals, community, and society), which have improved the societal well-being, and contributed to the reduction of certain forms of marginality, mainly inside the territory in which SI occurred.

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Series: Sustainability
ISSN: 2071-1050
ISSN-E: 2071-1050
ISSN-L: 2071-1050
Volume: 13
Issue: 4
Article number: 1823
DOI: 10.3390/su13041823
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 616 Other humanities
520 Other social sciences
1172 Environmental sciences
Funding: This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Program under Grant Agreement No. 677622 (H2020 SIMRA–Social Innovation in Marginalised Rural Areas Project).
EU Grant Number: (677622) SIMRA - Social Innovation in Marginalised Rural Areas
Copyright information: © 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (