Social innovation is often seen as an outcome rather than as a tool, a stroke of inspiration rather than a sustained practice. However, there are organizations that regard innovation as a process rather than a destination. These organizations are intentionally building their internal capacity to innovate. While these organizations approach innovation capacity-building in different ways, common themes have emerged: a clear vision, leadership and staff development, engaged networks, allocated resources, and learning from experimentation.

No recipe exists for how to combine these characteristics; it depends on mission, context and culture among other things. Experimenting with these characteristics can help social sector organizations develop the capabilities to sustain innovation over time. For a printable resource of questions to help understand your organization's capacity to innovate, click here.

To learn more about capacity to innovate, click here.