The role of community leadership in the development of grassroots innovations

Martiskainen, Mari (2016) The role of community leadership in the development of grassroots innovations. Working Paper. SPRU Working Paper Series, Sussex.

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Abstract

This article focuses on the role of community leadership in the development of grassroots innovations. It asks: When community leaders initiate energy projects, what types of skills and knowledge practices do they utilise to nurture grassroots innovations? Grassroots innovations are usually driven by social and sustainability motives, and developed by civil society groups. Based on a mixed methods approach including research interviews and site visits, the article draws on previous literature on community leadership, grassroots innovations and niche literature. Community leadership is analysed via two in-depth community energy cases in the UK. Research findings show that community leadership can aid the development of grassroots innovations, which operate in niches and require nurturing. Community leadership benefits from being embedded into social networks, shared vision and decision making, but pre-existing skills and tacit knowledge also play a role. Community leaders can also assist niche building by working closely with intermediary actors.

Item Type: Reports and working papers (Working Paper)
Keywords: Community leadership, Grassroots innovations, Nurturing, Intermediaries, Community energy
Schools and Departments: School of Business, Management and Economics > SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit > SPRU Working Paper Series
Subjects: H Social Sciences
Depositing User: Mari Martiskainen
Date Deposited: 10 Jun 2016 11:47
Last Modified: 10 Jun 2016 11:47
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/61436

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Project NameSussex Project NumberFunderFunder Ref
Research Centre on Innovation and Energy DemandG1020RCUK-RESEARCH COUNCILS UKEP/K011790/1
Community Innovation in Sustainable EnergyG0490EPSRC-ENGINEERING & PHYSICAL SCIENCES RESEARCH COUNCILEP/H051139/1