Skip to main content

What does it take to go big?

Insights on scaling social innovation from the Centre for Social Action Innovation Fund

Over the last three years, Nesta and the Cabinet Office have been on a mission to find and grow the best social action innovations that augment public services. The results have been promising. Through financial support, alongside advice, connections and networks, all of the innovations have grown the number of volunteers they work with, geographies they operate in and crucially, the number of people the work is designed to improve outcomes for, be that children doing better at school, people returning to work or patients managing their longterm conditions more successfully.

The work allows us to point to promising examples now available across England, which we hope will allow social action to be viewed as something which can operate at scale and not just locally or on the fringes as a ‘nice to have’. For example, because they have scaled, any school can now request a Code Club, any local authority a Shared Lives Plus caring scheme, any Ambulance Trust a GoodSAM first responder scheme, any GP surgery a Breathe Easy group, any job centre a CIPD Steps Ahead mentor, any Prison Governor a User Voice Council and so on.