The Hermeneutic Understanding of Social Innovation
14 June 2014
Tokyo, Japan

Some of you who are starting to read this article may feel like scratching your head by seeing the title that is compounded by the words you are unfamiliar with: ‘hermeneutic’ next to one of the most alluring but a big-tent term, ‘social innovation.’ Suffice to say, such distraction is not what we intend, let alone to be worth the true meaning of education. As Socrates once said, “Education is the kindling of flame, not the filling of a vessel,” we would rather assist you in action-oriented learning for social innovation than provide relevant information merely for external rewards such as grades or scores. Again, before getting any ideas or thought divergent, you are asked what this title means to you and us, and why it should be understood in that way. First, let us begin with the contours of ‘social innovation.’

This is the modified version of the original textbook that Hirofumi Yokoi wrote up for use in classes of Social Innovation at Global Leadership Program (GLP), The University of Tokyo: