About this Course
4.8
229 ratings
95 reviews
This free 6 week course is for anyone who wants to make a difference. Whether you are already familiar with the field of social innovation or social entrepreneurship, working for an organization that wants to increase its social impact, or just starting out, this course will take you on a journey of exploring the complex problems that surround us and how to start thinking about solutions. We will debunk common assumptions around what resources are needed to begin acting as a social innovator. We will learn from the numerous examples of social innovations happening all over the world. You will be challenged to get out of your comfort zone and start engaging with the diverse spaces around you. By the end of the course, you will have formed your own approach to social innovation, and you will have begun to develop the concepts, mindset, skills, and relationships that will enable you to start and evolve as a changemaker. You will be able to purchase a Verified Certificate if you wish to show evidence of your achievements, but this is optional, and you may apply for Financial Aid if you are unable to pay the certificate fee. The Bertha Centre for Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship co-created this course with RLabs, a social movement ‘born-and-bred’ in Bridgetown, Cape Town that is now active in 22 countries. The movement empowers youth through innovative and disruptive technology by teaching them vital skills and providing much needed support and a sense of community. Advocating and supporting initiatives such as RLabs forms part of the Bertha Centre’s mandate. The Centre is a specialised unit at University of Cape Town’s Graduate School of Business, and is the first academic centre in Africa dedicated to advancing social innovation and entrepreneurship. You can view the course trailer at www.youtube.com/watch?v=TcWYG64WO20 Tweet about this course using the hashtag #socinnMOOC...
Globe

100% online courses

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Calendar

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.
Beginner Level

Beginner Level

Clock

Suggested: 6 weeks of study, 2-3 hours per week

Approx. 19 hours to complete
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English

Skills you will gain

InnovationEntrepreneurshipSocial EntrepreneurshipSustainability
Globe

100% online courses

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Calendar

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.
Beginner Level

Beginner Level

Clock

Suggested: 6 weeks of study, 2-3 hours per week

Approx. 19 hours to complete
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English

Syllabus - What you will learn from this course

1

Section
Clock
4 hours to complete

What's our problem?

Welcome to Becoming a changemaker! This week, we distinguish between simple, complicated and complex problems. Social innovation takes place in complex systems and complex systems have complex or “wicked” problems, like the kinds of problems the world is trying to tackle right now such as climate change, HIV Aids and other pandemics, poverty and inequality. A complex system has many variables or elements such as different sorts of people, material and rules and those elements of the system are interacting with each other so much that the complexity increases exponentially. So the work of complexity is about bringing yourself into the system, engaging with it, living with it and innovating in yourself as you innovate in that system that you’re working in. You can’t look at the whole system but you can look at more than one piece of it. The more you start to bring in different parts of the systems, you can then start to connect those in ways that they weren’t connected before. ...
Reading
10 videos (Total 59 min), 5 readings, 2 quizzes
Video10 videos
About this course4m
RLabs: Journey of Hope Part 17m
What is Social Innovation?4m
Simple, complicated and complex6m
Wicked problems4m
The 5 Whys4m
Case study: Mothers2mothers8m
Reflecting with RLabs: problems10m
Week 1 Peer Assignment guidance5m
Reading5 readings
Meet your instructors10m
How this course works10m
What to expect in week 110m
RLabs: Empowering Unlikely Innovators10m
Week 1 recommended readings10m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 1: Test your knowledge8m

2

Section
Clock
3 hours to complete

What do we have to work with?

One of the hallmarks of very innovative organizations and people is that they see resources where other people don’t, and they can bring those resources to bear to create new innovative solutions. There’s transformative power in shifting from looking at needs, gaps, and what’s wrong, to appreciating strengths, resources and what’s right. Through developing a strength-based mindset and an appreciative approach you can discover hidden or underused resources. These resources might be people, kinds of knowledge and expertise, time, and physical spaces. As soon as you start seeing resources all around you, not only can you move forward but you become energised and hopeful, and creative things start to happen. You’ll find that you might be a lot richer than you think in terms of what you have to start building your own social innovation with....
Reading
6 videos (Total 39 min), 2 readings, 2 quizzes
Video6 videos
Discovering resources3m
Appreciative inquiry6m
Case study: The Street Store5m
Finding hidden resources6m
Reflecting with RLabs: resources10m
Reading2 readings
What to expect in week 210m
Week 2 recommended readings10m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 2: Graded quiz16m

3

Section
Clock
3 hours to complete

Getting out of your comfort zone

By nature the world of social innovation is made of crossing boundaries, bringing together different actors, resources, spaces, but it can be overwhelming. Part of our challenge on the journey to becoming changemakers is to learn how to become comfortable with discomfort and how in the social innovation space where you take yourself into spaces and you surround yourself with people that you normally do not engage with. Understanding how we define differences using cultural, sociological, psychological and spiritual lenses and what the nature of the differences is helps to develop tools for getting out of your comfort zone. It takes a little bit of courage because it makes you uncomfortable, but that’s how you build the competencies, the personal resilience to engage with difference when we do go and drive for innovations or we look to make differences in communities that are unlike us or operate in a different way. ...
Reading
7 videos (Total 47 min), 2 readings, 2 quizzes
Video7 videos
Bricolage: recombining ideas and people3m
Thinking about difference7m
Engaging difference3m
Negotiating difference8m
Reflecting with RLabs: comfort zones12m
Week 3 peer assessment4m
Reading2 readings
What to expect in week 310m
Week 3 recommended readings10m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 3 practice quiz12m

4

Section
Clock
4 hours to complete

Innovating by design

A number of methodologies and processes can help generate ideas and creative opportunities, and some of these have been used in business to generate new products and services, and are starting to be applied in social innovation. Human-centred design is incredibly important, and the Design Thinking process allows you to start early and wherever you are with whatever you’ve got. Design Thinking has evolved as a way to respond to deeper user insights, to connect more with people and with communities so that we can actually design solutions that are human-centred. Design Thinking is not just about products, but also helps create new processes, new systems, new services, and importantly even user experiences. Following a Design Thinking process will help you iterate and test your solution with end users, with an emphasis on failing early and often through trying things out and prototyping. Powerful Design Thinking methodology can help you to come up with human-centred design solutions that manifest economic viability, technical feasibility and social desirability in your social innovation. ...
Reading
9 videos (Total 53 min), 2 readings, 2 quizzes
Video9 videos
Generating ideas3m
Design thinking principles7m
Design thinking steps3m
Design thinking case studies5m
Discussing design thinking7m
Reflecting with RLabs: design in social innovation10m
Week 4 Peer Assignment guidance4m
Week 4 peer assessment artefact feedback4m
Reading2 readings
What to expect in week 410m
Week 4 recommended readings10m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 4 practice quiz10m
4.8
Briefcase

83%

got a tangible career benefit from this course

Top Reviews

By SIFeb 11th 2018

Highly recommended for the change agents who have no background in social entrepreneurship. This course will walk you through step by step into changing the system for the better of humanity habitats.

By OMJun 5th 2018

This is a very effective course for anyone who would like to be an innovator or an entrepreneur. It helps with the knowledge and foundation of the necessary skills needed for social innovation.

Instructors

François Bonnici

Director
Bertha Centre for Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Graduate School of Business, University of Cape Town

Warren Nilsson

Associate Professor
Graduate School of Business, University of Cape Town

Marlon Parker

Founder
RLabs

About University of Cape Town

The University of Cape Town is the oldest university in South Africa and is one of the leading research universities on the African continent. UCT has over 25 000 students, of whom 30% are postgraduate students. We offer degrees in six faculties: Commerce, Engineering & the Built Environment, Health Sciences, Humanities, Law, and Science. We pride ourself on our diverse student body, which reflects the many cultures and backgrounds of the region. We welcome international students and are currently home to thousands of international students from over 100 countries. UCT has a tradition of academic excellence that is respected world-wide and is privileged to have more than 30 A-rated researchers on our staff, all of whom are recognised as world leaders in their field. Our aim is to ensure that our research contributes to the public good through sharing knowledge for the benefit of society. Past students include five Nobel Laureates – Max Theiler, Alan Cormack, Sir Aaron Klug, Ralph Bunche and, most recently, J M Coetzee....

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Once you enroll for a Certificate, you’ll have access to all videos, quizzes, and programming assignments (if applicable). Peer review assignments can only be submitted and reviewed once your session has begun. If you choose to explore the course without purchasing, you may not be able to access certain assignments.

  • When you purchase a Certificate you get access to all course materials, including graded assignments. Upon completing the course, your electronic Certificate will be added to your Accomplishments page - from there, you can print your Certificate or add it to your LinkedIn profile. If you only want to read and view the course content, you can audit the course for free.

More questions? Visit the Learner Help Center.