The publication series includes working papers that provide information on research activities at the Institute for Social Innovation.

Here you find references to publications of members and those that have been produced in cooperation with ISInova.

Jaeger-Erben, Melanie et al. (2020): From niche to mainstream: the dilemmas of scaling up sustainable alternatives. In: GAIA – Ecological Perspectives for Science and Society, Volume 29, Number 3, 2020, pp. 143-147(5). Oekom Verlag.

Content:
At the heart of transition research lies the question of how to “scale up” sustainable alternatives from a protected niche to the creation of mainstream practices. While upscaling processes are often seen as an essential element that contributes to societal transformation, upscaling itself remains a fuzzy concept.
More on the content oekom Verlag.

G. Richter (Hrsg.): Lernen in der digitalen Transformation. Wie arbeitsintegriertes Lernen in der betrieblichen Praxis gelingt 1. Auflage. Stuttgart: Schäffer-Poeschel Verlag 2020.

Content:
The book wants to sensitize for the potential of learning at work, describes the conditions for work-integrated learning in the enterprise and shows operational high-level personnel organization chances as learning companions and work designers.

ISBN: 978-3-7910-4822-2
Click here for a reading sample (German).
More on the content Schäffer-Poeschel Verlag

Philip Boos & René John (2020): Umdeutung als Mittel erfolgreicher Regionalentwicklung. In: Schroth, Fabian; Schrautner, Martina (Hg.): Horizonte erweitern – Perspektiven ändern. Ländliche Räume als Innovationsräume verstehen und fördern, Berlin: Fraunhofer CeRRI: 36-48.

Content:
Using examples from the regions investigated in the joint project “Broadening Horizons”, the article describes how regions far from agglomerations can successfully develop endogenously based on the reinterpretation of existing resources.
To the article

Jaeger-Erben, Melanie; Peuker, Birgit; Rückert-John, Jana (2020): Die Potenziale der Digitalisierung zur Förderung sozialer Innovationen. In: von Hauff, Michael; Reller, Armin (Hg.): Nachhaltige Digitalisierung – eine noch zu bewältigende Zukunftsaufgabe (forum hlz 3). Wiesbaden: Hessische Landeszentrale für politische Bildung: 123-140

Content:
On the basis of current forms of alternative consumption, it will be discussed to what extent such changes benefit from digitisation in terms of social innovation.

ISBN: 978-3-943192-55-1
ISSN: 2195-5956
Link to forum hlz 3 (pdf in German)

Braun-Thürmann, Holger; John, René (2019): Stabilisierung und Selbstbeschreibung: Innovation als Element soziologischer Theorie. In: Schubert, Cornelius; Schulz-Schaeffer, Ingo (Hg.): Berliner Schlüssel zur Techniksoziologie. Wiesbaden: Springer VS

Content:
What role can innovation play in sociological thinking if it does not primarily identify a new technology or a new service?
ISBN: 978-3-658-22256-7
More on the content Springer VS

Rückert-John, Jana; John, René (2018): Geschlecht gegessen. Die Bedeutung der Geschlechterperspektive für die Ernährungsforschung. In: Häußler, Angela; Küster, Christine; Ohrem, Sandra; Wagenknecht, Inga (Hg.): Care und die Wissenschaft vom Haushalt. Aktuelle Perspektiven der Haushaltswissenschaft

Content:
This article examines the relationship between gender and nutrition. This is explained by pointing out heteronorm nutritional practices.
ISBN: 978-3-658-19361-4
More on the content Springer VS

Boos, Philip (2017): Spatial manifestation of mobility tactics. In: The Urban Transcript Journal, Volume 1, no. 4, Winter 2017/18

Content:
The article discusses the relationship between the planned design and practical use of paths in an urban context.
More on the content The Urban Transcripts

Jaeger-Erben, Melanie; John, René; Rückert-John, Jana (2017): Soziale Innovation: Verheißung oder Verführung? In: GAIA 26/3

Content:
The paper discusses the theoretical content and empirical power of the term “social innovation” against the background of the debate on innovation and practice.
To the article

John, René; Rückert-John, Jana (2016): Innovativität der Konsumpraktiken. In: Besio, Cristina; Romano, Gaetano (Hg.): Zum gesellschaftlichen Umgang mit dem Klimawandel Kooperationen und Kollisionen, Baden-Baden: Nomos

Content:
In the article, changes in consumption are explained as changes in everyday practices. The findings of the Environmental Awareness Study 2012 are given as examples.
ISBN: 978-3-8487-1481-0
More on the content Nomos Verlag

Hagen, Kornelia; Rückert-John, Jana (Hg.) (2016): Teilen, tauschen, leihen. Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung 2 und 3/2016

Content:
Issue 2: Sustainable models of future economic activity?
More on the contents of issue 2

Issue 3: Effects on the Labor Market, Environment, Social Issues.
More on the contents of issue 3

John, René; Jaeger-Erben, Melanie; Rückert-John, Jana (2016): Elusive Practices: Considerations on limits and possibilities of environmental policy for sustainable consumption. In: Environmental Policy and Governance 26 (2)

Content:
The article analyzes how German environmental policy observes the everyday consumption of citizens, how this approach developed and what weaknesses it has. Three reasons are discussed based on practical theoretical considerations.
More on the content Wiley Online Library

Rückert-John, Jana; John, René; Jaeger-Erben, Melanie: Neue Formen des Konsums aus Sicht der Politik. In: Forschungsjournal Soziale Bewegungen 2/2015

Content:
The article analyses alternative consumption patterns and their political promotion. A typology of alternative consumption patterns is then presented. Through political support, however, the consumption patterns lose their alternative character and are not pursued further. Therefore, environmental policy should enable alternative consumption patterns as everyday practices.
More on the content Fachjournal Soziale Bewegungen

von Wissel, Carsten; Schneidewind, Uwe (2015): Tranformative Wissenschaft, in: Forum Wissenschaft 4/15; Die Eigenlogik der Wissenschaft neu verhandeln, in: GAIA 24/3 (2015)

Content:
The article outlines the discussion on the role of science in society and highlights the new forms of democratization and future challenges.
To the article

In another overview article, Carsten von Wissel summarizes the current debate.
To the article

John, René, Langhof, Antonia (Hg.) (2014): Scheitern – Ein Desiderat der Moderne? Wiesbaden: Springer VS

Content:
According to the initial thesis of the anthology, failure is hardly perceived by the social sciences to the extent that it takes place in society. The contributions strive for conceptual definitions and empirical descriptions, because it is from here that the conditions of the possibility of success become clear.
ISBN: 978-3-531-19181-2
More on the content Springer VS

Cevolini, Alberto (Hg.) (2014): Die Ordnung des Kontingenten. Beiträge zur zahlenmäßigen Selbstbeschreibung der modernen Gesellschaft. Wiesbaden: Springer VS

Content:
The self-description of modern society through numbers is omnipresent. But what are the reasons for this? Starting from the beginnings in the observation of population by the state in the 17th and 18th centuries, the significance for modern society of the abstraction that was thus set in motion is discussed in this article.
ISBN: 978-3-531-19235-2
More on the content Springer VS

Rückert-John, Jana (Hg.) (2013): Soziale Innovation und Nachhaltigkeit. Perspektiven sozialen Wandels. Wiesbaden: Springer VS

Content:
Political perspectives on innovation and sustainability – Conceptual considerations and “bridge-building” – Facets of an alliance of innovation and sustainability – Fields of application of social innovations in the sustainability process.
ISBN: 978-3-531-18974-1
More on the content Springer VS

John, René; Rückert-John, Jana; Esposito, Elena (Hg.) (2013): Ontologien der Moderne. Wiesbaden: Springer VS

Content:
The experience of the world can only take place under the condition of its actuality. For this, its constructedness must disappear behind ontic references. If the first arrangement of the world is contingent, it is not arbitrary. The construction has necessary consequences as facts. If the memory of the initial construction does not succeed, reflection is only shortened and insufficient.
ISBN: 978-3-531-94128-8
More on the content Springer VS

Rürup, Matthias; Bormann, Inka (Hg.) (2012): Innovationen im Bildungswesen. Analytische Zugänge und empirische Befunde. Wiesbaden: Springer VS

Content:
The volume seeks to systematically link the educational governance perspective with innovation research, which is now well established in educational science. This is discussed from various theoretical perspectives and methodological approaches. At the same time, a systematic overview of current fields and findings of innovation research in education systems is provided. With contributions by René John, among others.
ISBN: 978-3-531-19701-2
More on the content Springer VS

Bormann, Inka; John, René; Aderhold, Jens (Hg.) (2012): Indikatoren des Neuen. Innovation als Sozialmethodologie oder Sozialtechnologie? Wiesbaden: Springer VS

Content:
The discussion in this volume ensures that the debate on social innovations is factually grounded and disseminated. The relationship between innovation and society, particularly in the observation of social change in both concrete organizational and general societal contexts, is highlighted. The aim is to address innovations as temporarily fixed solutions to social problems.
ISBN: 978-3-531-94043-4
More on the content Springer VS

Howald, Jürgen; Jacobsen, Heike (Hg.)(2010): Soziale Innovation. Auf dem Wegzu einem postindustriellen Innovationsparadigma. Wiesbaden: Springer VS

Content:
This volume ties in with the examination of social innovations in discussions on modernization theory, technology and the sociology of science. It combines theoretical assessments of the current situation, research guiding concepts and empirical findings.
Contributions by Holger Braun-Thürmann, René John and Jens Aderhold, among others.
ISBN: 978-3-531-92469-4
More on the content Springer VS

John, René; Henkel, Anna; Rückert-John, Jana (Hg.) (2010): Methologien des Systems. Wie kommt man zum Fall und wie dahinter? Wiesbaden: Springer VS

Content:
The volume contains international contributions to the state of the debate on the possibility of empirical research on a systems theory basis.
ISBN: 978-3-531-92435-9
More on the content Springer VS

Wetzel, Ralf; Aderhold, Jens; Rückert-John, Jana (Hg.) (2009): Die Organisation in unruhigen Zeiten. Heidelberg: Carl-Auer-Verlag

Content:
The volume sets out to search for indications and symptoms that provide information about the current and prospective state of the organization. Using empirical, conceptual, and analytical considerations from various perspectives, it looks for possibilities of description that point to a considerable backlog in empirical observation, conceptual work, and design.
ISBN: 978-3-89670-910-3
More on the content Carl-Auer Verlag

John, René (2008): Die Modernität der Gemeinschaft. Soziologische Beobachtungen zur Oderflut 1997. Bielefeld: transcript Verlag

Content:
Community is an answer to the problem of individual self-description in the multi-contextual society – a genuinely modern phenomenon.
ISBN: 978-3-89942-886-5
More on the content transcript Verlag

Rückert-John, Jana (2007): Natürlich Essen. Kantinen und Restaurants auf dem Weg zu nachhaltiger Ernährung

Content:
Motives, constellations, problems and solutions and organizational structural consequences of the introduction of organic food in out-of-home catering were examined on the basis of four case analyses.
ISBN: 978-3-593-38484-9
More on the content Campus Verlag

Abel, Roland (2007): Erwerbsregulierung in kleinen Handwerksunternehmen – untersucht am Beispiel von Tischlereien. München, Mehring: Rainer Hampp-Verlag

Content:
Impact of collective bargaining on the regulation of employment and company employment conditions in handicraft enterprises on the basis of an empirical study on this important but so far largely unexplored subject.
ISBN: 978-3-86618-158-8
More on the content Rainer Hampp Verlag

Blättel-Mink, Birgit (2006): Kompendium der Innovationsforschung. Wiesbaden: Springer VS

Content:
History of the term, social and political significance, history of innovation research, current topics, main works of innovation research. With contributions by René John and Jens Aderhold.
ISBN: 978-3-531-19971-9
More on the content Springer VS

Abel, Roland; Bass, Hans H.; Ernst-Siebert, Robert (Hg.) (2006): Kleine und mittelgroße Unternehmen im globalen Innovationswettbewerb. Technikgestaltung, Internationalisierungsstrategien, Beschäftigungsschaffung. München u. Mering: Hampp-Verlag

Content:
Can small and medium-sized companies, the “job machines” of the national economy, achieve competitive advantages on international markets through innovation? Which factors promote, which ones inhibit their innovative strength? And what can, what should economic policy do? In this volume, economists and sociologists provide answers to these questions.
ISBN: 978-3866180765

Aderhold, Jens; John, René (Hg.) (2005): Innovation. Sozialwissenschaftliche Perspektiven. Konstanz: UVK

Content:
Authors from various social science disciplines present the theoretical perspectives of social science research and seek out concrete social fields. Social counseling, unions and health insurance companies in Germany, qualification in the management sector, protest movements such as Attac and the terror movement Al Qaeda as well as the development of Free Software, the renewal of the Berlin Schaubühne are examined from the perspective of social innovation.
ISBN: 978-3896695222

Aderhold, Jens (2005): Form und Funktion sozialer Netzwerke in Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft. Beziehungsgeflechte als Vermittler zwischen Erreichbarkeit und Zugänglichkeit. Wiesbaden: Springer VS

Content:
The question of what networks are has been on our minds for more than a century now, and it looks like we haven’t gotten very far in answering this question. One reason for this is that we have been impressed by very specific perspectives, with the effect of a kind of unrelated chatter. What has been missing so far is a scientific foundation based on generalization and access to questions of social theory.
ISBN: 978-3-322-83386-0
More on the content Springer VS

Ralf Wetzel (2004): Eine Widerspenstige und keine Zähmung. Systemtheoretische Beiträge zu einer Theorie der Behinderung. Heidelberg: Carl-Auer-Verlag.

Content:
Organizations play an immense role in modern society. One can hardly imagine any social activity taking place outside their catchment area. But it is not only their presence that is unmistakable, but also their functions and characteristics. Organizations regulate the access of humans to social functional areas, and at the same time they cleverly elude the manifold attempts of change that are brought to them.
ISBN: 978-3896703316

Hinrichs, Wilhelm; Priller, Eckhard (Hg.) (2001): Handeln im Wandel. Akteurskonstellationen in der Transformation. In: Berliner Debatte 2 (2003)

Content:
In this anthology, which was produced on the occasion of a conference on the retirement of Professor Horst Berger, the German transformation process is discussed from an East German perspective. This contribution highlights the one-sidedness of politics and the research perspective that follows it. Furthermore, the article on Priller’s social capital is highly recommended. It contains reflections on current societal issues and problems, which therefore leave behind the narrow framework of East German transformation problems.

Hagen, Kornelia; Rückert-John, Jana (2001): Netzwerke – Ein Beitrag zur regionalen Innovations- und Beschäftigungssicherung? In: Hoß, D.; Schrick, G. (Hg.): Die Region – Experimentierfeld gesellschaftlicher Innovation, Münster: Westfälisches Dampfboot

Content:
There is a growing awareness of the importance of regional networks for increasing competitiveness and securing the location as well as promoting employment. Increasing attention is also being paid to the fact that economic competitiveness and innovative strength depend on a variety of factors in the social and institutional environment of companies. As a result, the region has become a veritable “field of experimentation for social innovation”.

Rückert-John, Jana (2002): Interorganisationale Netzwerke aus systemtheoretischer Perspektive. In: Hentrich, Jörg; Hoß, Dietrich (Hg.): RKW-Diskurs Arbeiten und Lernen in Netzwerken. Eine Zwischenbilanz zu neuen Formen sozialer und wirtschaftlicher Kooperationen. Eschborn: RKW-Verlag

Content:
On the basis of system-theoretical considerations on networks, interorganizational networks are presented as loose structural couplings between organizations. As loose couplings, networks always contain specific latency. The associated risk must be bound by trust. Networks are unstable and are transformed into other forms by ongoing network communications, into dissolutions or stricter ties of cooperation.

Richter, Götz (2002): Anpassung oder Gestaltung? Betriebliche Beschäftigungsbündnisse in der deutschen Metall- und Elektroindustrie. In: Hartmut Seifert (Hg.): Betriebliche Bündnisse für Arbeit. Rahmenbedingungen – Praxiserfahrungen – Zukunftsbedingungen. Berlin, edition sigma

Content:
How are company alliances for work created and how do they prove their worth? This anthology shows, in a variety of facets and by means of a rich selection of concrete agreements, how alliances came about, what contents were agreed upon and what problems had to be overcome during implementation. The combination of empiricism and reflection creates a broad overview that helps not least of all those involved in the company to make use of their experience and exploit opportunities.
ISBN: 978-3894048969

Bothfeld, Silke; Gronbach, Sigrid; Riedmüller, Barbara (Hg.) (2002): Gender Mainstreaming – eine Innovation in der Gleichstellungspolitik. Frankfurt am Main: Campus Verlag

Content:
Gender mainstreaming means that gender relations are generally taken into account in all political and administrative institutions. Women academics and practitioners discuss here whether and what new opportunities this concept offers for gender equality policy.
ISBN: 978-3593370385
More on the content Campus Verlag

The forced novelty and innovation orientation of today’s society also affects organizations. At the very least, they are disturbed and irritated by the permanent flow of information without it being clear whether the information is relevant. They can only react with their own ideas about the informations. Ideas, however, have concrete originators, namely the employees. In this respect, ideas are desired in the organizations as a resource for orientation or are recommended to them under the various time-diagnostic keywords. However, it is questionable from whom which ideas are expected or are to be expected. It must then be decided whether to reject or implement the ideas that come up. This also raises the question of how the associated opportunities for organisational learning and for structural changes can be used and how the potential for disruption inherent in ideas can be neutralised. Organisations find different ways to do this depending on their structures. An empirical exploration of ten different organisations, which are assigned to the economy, science or administration, shows different solutions in dealing with employee ideas, which typically rely on enforcement, supervision or autonomy in dealing with ideas.

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 9,50 € (incl. shipping).

The article deals with the question of how responsibility for design intentions and design actions can be assumed in a pluralistic and complex society, if a) the consequences of innovations cannot be fully anticipated in principle and b) the value basis on which these consequences can be assessed as positive or negative cannot be generally defined. Different (political) concepts are discussed to solve the problem of responsibility in the field of tension between value plurality and consequence contingency: the concept of social innovation, the concept of “responsible research and innovation”, mechanisms of invisibilisation of responsibility in organisations and the insurability of negative consequences. These instruments cannot, however, ultimately solve the limits of dealing with responsibility; the social sciences should also address this fundamental unsolvability of the problem of responsibility in modernity in their terminology. These should not be morally charged, since the adoption of political concepts as analytical categories distracts academic debate from the actual question, the analysis of current problems brought about by an accelerated innovation process.

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 9,50 € (incl. shipping).

The distinction between technology and society is a fundamental starting point for today’s contributions to the innovation debate. Yet the reasons for these distinctions – to the extent that they are made at all – are hardly valid: For example, the fundamental argument of the materiality of technology is not convincing when one asks about the concept of materiality or the resulting immateriality of society.

The definition of non-technological innovations is therefore developed against the background of a concept of technology that is not based on reification. With the distinction thus gained between technical and non-technical innovations, it becomes clear how technology and non-technology in social change refer to each other as translational forms in the production and dissolution of causal necessities in contingent social contexts.

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 9,50 € (incl. shipping).

Due to the ongoing digitalisation there is a high demand for computer scientists. This demand cannot be met at present: The number of female computer science students* is too low and the drop-out rate is high. Many topics appear to be too theoretical, abstract and not relevant to practice. In addition, only few students adhere to the standard study periods. The question therefore arises how to explain learning contents in a more practical way and how to get more students interested in computer science topics. Games seem to be particularly suitable as a means of motivation. Therefore, the following question is to be answered in this thesis: Is it possible to increase motivation and learning success for basic programming skills by using a serious games-based learning system?

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 9,50 € (incl. shipping).

The aim of the present working paper is to define criteria for the description and identification of successful regions remote from agglomerations. It is argued that the inclusion of density factors in spatial innovation research is not sufficient to explain the emergence of functional innovation regimes. Based on the perspectives of space, innovation and governance, eight descriptive criteria for the investigation of functional innovation regimes at the regional level are determined. The individual perspectives provide information on the proximity to the agglomeration ideal (space), the preservation of option diversity (innovation) and the degree of functionality of the regional regime (governance). Finally, a proposal for the operationalisation of the established determination criteria as regional profiles based on the LEADER regions is given.

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 9,50 € (incl. shipping).

The achievements of communities committed to the common good on the basis of pluralistic and demoratically negotiated values have for some time been increasingly discussed again for the solutions to social problems. In particular, communities that seek alternative forms of consumption are of some interest. The affinity between the everyday problems they deal with and those of socio-ecological change are possible. To what extent, however, does this motivational coalition play a role in the commitment of the active members of such communities. The representative survey commissioned by the Federal Environment Agency and presented here provides information on this.

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 9,50 € (incl. shipping).

The contribution aims to use the example of the Environmental Awareness Study 2012 and, above all, its practical theoretical orientation as a model to show the methodological consequences of the present subject matter. To this end, it deals with the theory-oriented coupling of instruments in a sequential mixed-method design. It also discusses the challenges and problems that were involved.

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 9,50 € (incl. shipping).

In the more recent discussion since the 1980s, innovations have been differentiated differently. These distinctions can hardly be convincingly demonstrated emprically, but are nevertheless repeatedly cited. Especially the distinction between radical and incremental innovations is still popular. The paper discusses the possibility of making this distinction empirically robust on the basis of the current discussion. This will contribute to the development of a well-founded concept of innovation that can be differentiated again. The present contribution is also the prelude to further discussions of other distinctions.

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 9,50 € (incl. shipping).

The broad field of Citizen Science is presented and typified in an overview. On this basis, initial considerations are made regarding application by departmental research.

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 9,50 € (incl. shipping).

With regard to innovation research, sociology faces the challenge of having to make a real contribution first (Braun-Thürmann 2005: 5). Despite numerous attempts, such a contribution is still missing. In view of this, the article points out two deficits responsible for this situation with a conceptual reflection and a methodological justification. Both the conceptual and the methodological problems of innovation research can be solved if they are tackled simultaneously.

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 9,50 € (incl. shipping).

How does the reference to the environment change in everyday life? In the course of the study “Environmental Awareness in Germany 2012” group discussions were held twice. While the first served the exploration of the field (see BzS 9), the second group discussion in the sense of focus groups aimed at an evaluative discussion of the theses gained from the representative survey and the media analysis (see BzS 13). At the same time, the dynamics of the types of argumentation identified in the first group discussion were identified, which were also related to lifestyles. Communication strategies for re-politics for addressing citizens in a way that is relevant to everyday life and has practical relevance can be derived from this.

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 9,50 € (incl. shipping).

One of the most important international environmental policy events in 2012 was the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development. It was extensively accompanied and commented on by the mass media in Germany. These reports from selected national and regional newspapers and magazines were compared with the assessments of political parties, NGOs and advisory bodies. The result is a mood of disappointment at the failure of global attempts at unification, which nonetheless offers hope for bilateral and multilateral transformation processes. Can this collection of material and analysis be used to draw conclusions about a new mode of international environmental policy?

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 9,50 € (incl. shipping).

German industrial relations are increasingly characterised by the labour market participation of women, migrants and older people. Therefore, even small companies have to deal with the diversity of their workforce and develop strategies for diversity management.

Understanding and managing diversity shapes relationships in the working environment, not only between employees and management, but also among employees.
The Social Research Center Dortmund (SFS) was commissioned by the Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (BAUA) to develop a tool for diversity management as an Internet-based analysis tool to support the implementation of diversity management.

Based on the description of this tool, problems arise in the establishment of diversity management when it changes industrial relations in a sustainable way as a routine. Two questions must be answered: How can diversity management gain a foothold in companies and what conditions must be met?

The text can be downloaded here as pdf (English) or ordered via the contact form for 7,50 € (incl. shipping).

Criteria for the analysis and systematization of social innovation in the field of sustainable consumption are presented, which form the basis for a typology. The typology enables the classification of different empirical phenomena and trends and shows approaches to design and promotion.

The text can be downloaded here as a pdf file or ordered via the contact form for 7,50 € (incl. shipping).

Social science environmental research has a long tradition in which it has a significant impact on the shaping of society. In the context of the exploratory studies for the Environmental Awareness Study 2012, experts from German environmental research were interviewed about their strengths and future tasks. The summarised results of the expert interviews are presented here.

The text can be downloaded here as a pdf file or ordered via the contact form for 7,50 € (incl. shipping).

The reference to the environment in everyday life is expressed not least in the routine transformation of resources. In order to make this approach more sparing, scientific observations have long been made, warnings and proposals for redesign have been published and rules have been issued. A successful instrument is the environmental awareness study, which has been carried out every two years since 1996. In connection with the 2012 study, exploratory studies were carried out in advance. The results of the group discussions are presented here.
It was asked which everyday practices are transformed on which occasions, what conditions there must be for this transformation and how these can finally be stabilised as practices again, i.e. how they can leave the focus of reflection. Can certain patterns of innovative transformation of practices in terms of lifestyle or structural conditions be identified here? How does the problem constitution determine the future form of practice, and what effects does this in turn have on other practices and the perception of structural conditions?

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 15,00 € (incl. shipping).

The social environmental conditions of society are determined in many ways by everyday practices. Following this consideration, the ambivalent significance of sustainability in relation to everyday practices is to be discussed by means of a concept-critical review. In doing so, it is important to clarify what the action-guiding, decision-relevant potential of sustainability can actually consist of. Finally, the potential for change, the innovativeness of practices themselves will be brought up for discussion. Despite the inertia of everyday practices in the face of constantly changing demands, they change incrementally and also very suddenly. The discussion of the three topics firstly everyday routines and practices, secondly the value of sustainability and thirdly the innovativeness of practices is intended to provide a framework for examining the questions of the significance of environmental references in everyday actions, the reflection on environmental problems in relation to practices and their sustainable change, i.e. transformation.

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The text was written by the three authors as expertise within the framework of the project “Rio+20 vor Ort – Bestandsaufnahme und Zukunftsperspektiven lokaler Nachhaltigkeitsprozesse in Deutschland” (Rio+20 on the spot – stocktaking and future perspectives of local sustainability processes in Germany), which was conducted under the leadership of the Institute for Future Studies and Technology Assessment, Berlin, funded by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, the Federal Environment Agency and the German Federal Foundation for the Environment.
In the text, innovation and sustainability are discussed with regard to their suitability for the observation of organisational processes using the example of sustainability initiatives and operationalised as indicators of organisational performance.

The text can be downloaded here as pdf or ordered via the contact form for 8,00 € (incl. shipping).

Documentation volume of the section meeting on the topic at the international conference KCTOS: Knowledge, Creativity and Transformations of Societies in Vienna 2007

Content:

Jens Aderhold: Elites in the field of tension between societal assertions of deficits and the need for scientific reflection
Hilke Rebenstorf: Read again: The unbroken topicality of Mosca and Pareto in the elite discussion
Grit Straßenberger: The performance profile of political elites in media democracy
Philipp Korom: Intellectuals as elites? Elites as orientators? – A Plea for the Integration of the Sociology of Intellectuals into the Sociology of Elites
Renate Liebold: Self-image and self-presentation of the economic elite in autobiographical self-portraits
Lars Vogel: Elite – these are the powerful: The self-image and elite concept of German parliamentarians
Tobias Jaeck, Katrin Harm and Jens Aderhold: Triple professionalisation at the local level – New challenges in elite action and their consequences for legitimacy
Helmut Fehr: Divided elites. Elite change in Eastern Central Europe (Poland, Czech Republic)
Tamara Scheer: “You will be asked to participate in the rebirth of your fatherland”.
Jens Aderhold: Mediation and simplification requirements in elite action in the context of secondary problems of modern society
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The problem of corruption is increasingly becoming the focus of social attention. Dealing with this phenomenon is exacerbating the problem. This is not only complex, but also contradictory and in part analytically uncontrolled. Corruption research supported by various disciplines can be guided in particular by an internationally comparative macro perspective and an actor-centred micro perspective. Both perspectives are not unproblematic in several respects, so that a third perspective is offered, which suggests a strategy of demoralization in the context of a public metaphorization. We interpret this proposal as a requirement for a sociologization of the corruption discourse. Firstly, it provides for a theoretically guided correction in the rationality assumptions of public and scientific corruption observation. Secondly, we use the example of policy-networks to show how the current handling of the phenomenon of corruption benefits from taking into account social changes and the associated effects of institutionalised decision making. Based on these two premises, the problem of corruption cannot therefore be conceived as a deviation from societal norms (e.g. from the rationality imperatives of modernity), but exclusively from the specifications of the organisation.

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Sociology is repeatedly faced with the challenge of having to assert itself in the context of social communication. As a self-description of society, it has to outdo the everyday experiences and thus becomes the focus of the consulting needs of other functional areas. Misunderstandings are the result: sociology is overstrained in terms of its performance because it is at the same time underchallenged in its possibilities for reflection. In other respects, its current situation is similar to that of about three decades ago. Instead of defending the institutional status quo, the performance of sociology will be demonstrated by means of popular innovation semantics. The conceptual fanning out of this opaque discourse-universality makes simple counselling seem impossible, but it allows us to understand the functioning of modern society in its general orientation towards increase. The conclusion to be drawn from this would be to understand sociology as the current self-portrait of society.

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The report is the result of a research cooperation with a German engineering service provider on the topic of employee satisfaction measurement. Employee satisfaction is presented as a multi-dimensional construct, for whose measurement and measurability a multitude of research papers are already available. In this work it becomes clear once again that a measurement of employee satisfaction according to the statistical quality criteria is only possible if the corresponding survey instrument is developed context-specifically, i.e. in and together with the company to be investigated. The authors, who were also project staff members in the research cooperation, can prove in this paper that they have developed and used a robust, context-specific questionnaire. The special feature of surveys that are carried out online is discussed. The survey instrument presented here was also used online and was able to prove its worth.

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Other texts have been published in the meantime: Aderhold, Jens; Vordank, Tino (2008): Initiating and sustainably managing organisational learning processes. The instrument “Management of the Intangible Resource Cycle”. In: Organizational Development 3/08: 72-84. about the content of Organizational Development 3/08

The author examines the possibility of integrating disabled people into normal working conditions from two different perspectives. The innovative idea of the integration company is the focus of the investigation. However, the integration of disabled people as a planned social innovation seems to be highly precarious, both on an organisational level and in the interactions between disabled and non-disabled employees. Can integration companies be expected to provide an innovative impulse with regard to the integration of disability in the world of work? This question is not simply negated by the author. But he shows with his text the limits of integration companies. Only when this is taken into account can the efficiency of this social innovation really be assessed.

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The text explores the question of how innovations can be observed empirically in terms of content without becoming tautologous. To this end, an evolutionary concept of innovation is developed from which observation perspectives are derived. Subsequently, organizations are presented as an empirical field for innovation research and the analytical capacity of the evolutionary concept of innovation is examined on the basis of current studies on change in organizations.

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