Social Innovation at the Service of Development: The Case of Atelier Mar in Cabo Verde

  • Alice Duarte
Part of the Studies on Entrepreneurship, Structural Change and Industrial Dynamics book series (ESID)


The goal of this chapter is to contribute to the clarification of the concept of social innovation through an analytic deconstruction of its dimensions as well as through its application to the analysis of a concrete empirical case. The paper starts by outlining the history of the notion of “social innovation,” a multidimensional concept which is still under construction. The objective is to demonstrate the non-exclusive connection between this notion and the domains of technology and economic sociology, as well as the relevance of collective participation and the logic of social transformation underlying the recent reconfigurations of the notion. After establishing the idea that social innovation is not related solely to the sphere of economics or to a new attitude in the entrepreneurial sector, the chapter examines the social innovation initiatives promoted by a non-governmental organization (NGO) for development with headquarters in Cabo Verde and describes some of its social intervention projects. The NGO was founded in the period immediately following Cabo Verde’s independence and has always been strongly linked to the arts. These two factors should be regarded, in and of themselves, as proof of the existence of a strong will and desire to create dynamic transformations in the social fabric. Although the NGO operates on various islands of the Cabo Verde archipelago, the focus here is on the community project developed on the island of São Antão, which started in 1990 and is still ongoing.


Concept of social innovation Collective participation Social transformation NGO Cabo Verde 



The writing of the chapter was supported by FCT—Foundation for Science and Technology, within the scope of UID/SOC/00727/2013.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alice Duarte
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of ArtsUniversity of PortoPortoPortugal

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