Symbiotic Innovation 2017-11-26T18:42:40+00:00

What is Symbiotic Innovation?

Traditional approaches place the welfare agency at the centre of social solutions and fail to address the underlying environmental causes of disadvantage. Community Four’s Symbiotic Innovation is an ecosystem approach which separates systemic social challenges from the individual and focusses on building community solutions to address the root causes of disadvantage. The SI solution is to encourage value exchange between diverse communities, linking them through mutual benefit and, most importantly, a shared purpose. Unlike any other community development model, SI was created locally, alongside the emerging community members it is designed to assist.

SI is based on the understanding that human beings build strong connections and bonds when they are faced with shared challenges and recognize that they have a shared purpose. For example, consider the way humanity unites quickly and organically when faced with events such as natural disasters. Shared challenges such as these create a catalyst for ‘value exchange’ between individuals, as they are encouraged to work together to find mutually beneficial solutions. Studies show community interdependence continues to thrive long after these challenging events have passed. SI builds from this type of community bonding and uses shared challenges to build interdependence across diverse communities. In essence, the SI approach focuses on the following:

  • Addressing the environmental aspects of disadvantage within communities
  • Working through community to deliver relevant and effective social impact for their members
  • Working with the community to develop and facilitate solutions that are community based, as well as relevant and meaningful to the experience of the members within the community
  • Connecting communities with more established ‘host’ communities, to work together for mutual benefit
  • Opening pathways for value exchange between individuals and diverse communities and
  • encouraging ongoing relationships we term: Integrated Social Response Frameworks
  • Creating the often-missing link between social capital and social cohesion

Further Resources

Additional reading and resources can be found here.