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The Power of Social Innovation: How Civic Entrepreneurs Ignite Community Networks for Good

Book Review
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The Power of Social Innovation: How Civic Entrepreneurs Ignite Community Networks for Good by Stephen Goldsmith with Gigi Georges and Tim Glynn Burke. Jossey-Bass, March 2010. 304 pages. $35.00.

The Power of Social Innovation provides the entrepreneur in all of us with ideas and ways to create social innovations at the community level. Goldsmith argues that to “create truly vibrant cities [and communities], we need to invent new approaches.” But more importantly, he argues that we “need to grow and execute [scale] these social innovations across entire systems.”  Throughout his book he provides great case studies highlighting the process of success of social entrepreneurs and innovative movements in social service and education delivery systems.  And his message is clear that communities need to create an environment that enables “continual innovation” while also demanding performance and real impact.

So how do we do that? Goldsmith’s theory of change, called the Vortex of Social Change, brilliantly outlines the interconnectedness of how social good is a cyclical results-oriented process, impacted for good or bad by actors who are market makers and service providers at both local and national levels.

For social innovators and entrepreneurs, this is a must read.

—Tine Hansen-Turton, PSIJ Co-Founder

Issue 3 | Book Reviews

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