Social Innovation for Ageing

The project aims at helping policy-makers to get an overview of potential policy needs, funders to receive ideas for potential investments, social entrepreneurs to gain inspirations for potential business ideas and social innovation incubators to improve their service

The Context

Social Innovation in the area of ageing might be the right approach to counter the challenges of ageing. Social Innovation is an inclusive and multi-dimensional concept that emphasises specific aspects of the innovation process, the context and the impact of innovations, such as : the orientation at social needs, problems and values; the introduction of new social practices; user participation and acceptance; societal and individual benefits. 

The Project  

This project will map and analyse social innovations as well as underlying patterns in the field of active and healthy ageing. In a first step, social innovators are ivited to present their social innovations on  applying participating in the European Award for Social Innovation in Active and Healthy Ageing.Please find here more information on the award!

This application database will be analysed regarding patterns, gaps and open questions. 25 cases will be selected for further analysis. The case studies will focus on the “innovation process” (initiation, collaboration, coordination, participation), the “innovation context” (business models, funding, incubation models, institutional context, ethical issues) and the “innovation impacts” (benefits for clients, institutional change). Lessons learnt from those cases will be synthesised in a rapport and presented at a European conference. The best three social innovations will be awarded with the Social Innovation in Ageing – The European Award. 

The ultimate goal is to create a platform of ideas for social innovations which can be scaled-up tackling the challenges of ageing. Social innovations exist often at local level and do rarely develop into a larger movement. Through the creation of a European platform of ideas for social innovation it is aimed to introduce these ideas to interested stakeholders. This will help to scale-up social innovations and make use of them in different countries across Europe. Moreover, the analysis of these cases might detect problems in the framework conditions hindering the scaling-up of social innovations in Europe. This might alert policy-makers to introduce changes in the legislative framework.

Who is it for? 

Policy makers at EU and national level, social entrepreneurs, social innovators, social innovation funders and social innovation incubators.

Social Innovations in Active and Healthy Ageing © Yuri Arcurs

Additional information


For general information:

Stefan Schäfers - +32 2 549 02 39

For specific details: 

Yves Dario - +32 2 549 61 73



European Award on Social Innovation for Ageing

An initiative by the King Baudouin Foundation in association with La Caixa Foundation & Unicredit Foundation

19.000 € for social innovations in the field of Active and Healthy Ageing

Extended deadline: Application open until 31 July, 2013

Award webbannner klein final


The King Baudouin Foundation in association with La Caixa Foundation & UniCredit Foundation presents “Social Innovation in Ageing – The European Award”. The award will recognize individuals, organizations, and partnerships developing and implementing social innovations in the field of active and healthy ageing. Social innovations respond to social problems and needs in a sustainable and socially accepted way through new or improved solutions.

Awardees will receive € 10.000 (1st place), € 5.000 (2nd place) or € 3.000 (3rd place), sponsored by the King Baudouin Foundation in association with La Caixa Foundation & Unicredit Foundation. The prizes are to be used by the social entrepreneurs to further develop, spread, and scale their solutions.

Details and the application form can be found here:


This initiative is launched in collaboration with: AGE Platform Europe, Centre for Social Innovation (AT), Ashoka (DE), Netwell Centre of the Dundalk Institute of Technology (IE), Centre of Socio-economic Gerontological Research of the Italian National Research Centre on Ageing (IT) & Ageing Research Centre of the Karolinska Institutet (SE)


For questions please contact Alexander Kesselring from the Centre for Social Innovation (ZSI) and AGE Platform Europe (AGE)


This website is developed with the financial support of an operating grant of the Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme of the European Commission. The contents of the articles are the sole responsibility of AGE Platform Europe and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Commission.