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GETIDOS - Getting things done sustainably

Theory, empirical basis and potential of social entrepreneurship for sustainable development



Knowledge about change in water.

 Water is constantly changing.  Water molecules connect and disconnect in a split second, none stay together very long. The physical properties of water know no political or economic boundaries; however, the social reality of water cannot avoid such complexities. While "change in water" – understood as the worldwide improvement of access to safe drinking water and sanitation, as well as water infrastructure – is not likely to be completed soon, the question remains: do the innovative approaches of social entrepreneurs provide a promising complement to current strategies and instruments?

GETIDOS puts an interdisciplinary perspective on social entrepreneurship (SE) by integrating knowledge and methods of business studies, ecohydrology, philosophy, political science and environmental engineering. It thereby aims at an understanding of the role that social entrepreneurs play in the water sector as well as evaluating their potential for sustainable development. For an integrated approach, the GETIDOS understanding of sustainable development is based upon the capability-approach and the theory of strong sustainability, which are complemented by the knowledge and methods of the above-mentioned disciplines.

The results of the joint research can be found in our book
"Social Entrepreneurship in the Water Sector - Getting things done sustainably". You can find more research results: here.



Knowledge for water changemakers.

The starting point is the challenge of sustainable water management.  GETIDOS works on practical knowledge with and for stakeholders in the water sector. Different social entrepreneurs are evaluated based on the integrated GETIDOS approach. The outcome of these evaluations are discussed in close cooperation with the SE-initiatives.

The evaluations are accompanied by contributions to the knowledge base of social entrepreneurship initiatives in the water sector worldwide. One step towards creating this kind of global water map is the development of the online portal
WasserWissen (water knowledge) in cooperation with, one of our partners.



Education for water in change.

GETIDOS initiated an event series called „Getting things done with…“ for students, researchers and anybody else who is interested in the topic of sustainable water management. Social entrepreneurship initiatives are presented and their projects explained - e.g. why trees are the best air conditioners, how you can save the world sip by sip, and why all European citizens should jump into their rivers at the same time.

For students we offer seminars
on social entrepreneurship, water and ethics, as well as development and justice. 

In 2011 we conducted a summer school that brought social entrepreneurship researchers together with researchers from the field of corporate social responsibility (CSR). The summer school sought to find comprehensive and transferable questions on the research objects of entrepreneurial actors who take over responsibility for today’s social and ecological challenges. Furthermore, the summer school aimed to initiate mutual learning; the results and findings were published in a book. More information can be found: here.

In 2012 and 2013 GETIDOS and other partners carried out a collaborative educational campaign –
Big Jump Challenge. The campaign combines a) the idea of  collaborative competition within the meaning of an open review-process for social entrepreneurship ideas with b) the Big Jump idea of the European Rivers Network.




News Twitter


13.4.2018 Deadline CfP Social Innovation and Sustainability

9.2.2018 Air beneath their wings Documentary online

26.1.2018 CrESSI-Social Innovation Conference Oxford

24.1.2018 Zukunftsalon München Book presentation

19.1.-21-1 3. Berlin River Film Festival

15.12.2017 Webinar Agency, Autonomy & Social Innovation

7.12.2017 Buch Wer zur Quelle will, muss gegen den Strom schwimmen

14.10.2017 1. Ryck-Tag Greifswald

15.7.2017 Deadline application Wild River Camp

May 2017: Special Issue Social Innovation & the Capability Approach

March 2017: New Book Global Water Ethics - Towards a global ethics charter

20.-22.1.2017 Wild and Scenic Film Festival, 2nd Berlin edition

9.1.2017  New research: Tackling Marginalisation through Social Innovation? 1. European Social Innovation Policy Forum

24.10.2016 Travelguide to a river - now available from here

5.-7.9.2016 Keynote at ISIRC 2016 Glasgow

6.7.-12.7.2016 Sensing the City - Youth River Action Camp, Berlin

30.6.2016 VL Rafael Ziegler, Wer zur Quelle will, muß gegen den Strom schwimmen. SI & Mitgestaltung von Wandel

3.6.2016 Vortrag L'eau et les rêves (en 2016). Nacht der Ideen, Institut Francais

21.4.2016  Lecture Jana Gebauer,  Breaking the cycle of feeling stagnant - Die transformative Rolle von Unternehmen im Postwachstum

April 2016 Social Entrepreneurship in the Water Sector - now also as a paperback

1.4.2016 Deadline Abstracts for economic underpinings of social innovation @ ISIRC 2016

20-22.1.2016 Wild & Scenic River Film Festival, Moviemento Berlin

18.11. Economic underpinnings of social innovation session @ SI Vienna

Big Jump Challenge 15 - Small acts of concrete solidarity. Report online

16.10.15 Flussparlament in Berlin

6.10.15 Webinar Municipal Housing in Vienna

15.10.15 Call for Papers Special Issue Social Innovation

6.-8.9.15. Special Session @ ISIRC 2015 Yorck

20.7. Getting on track for the future - the case for climate neutrality

13.7. 15 European Rivers Parliament, Brussels

23.-25.7.15. WaterEthics @ ISEE 2015 Kiel

7.5. Moving water messages

5. 5.15:  Call for Papers Special Session Economic underpinnings of social innovation

24.-27.3.15.  WassErleben Berlin

Register your Jump for the Big Jump Challenge by 22.3.2015

19.2.15. GETIDOS @Flussgebietsmanagement 2.0 Hannover

30.1.15. GETIDOS @ThinkShop des Laboratorio Expo

GETIDOS Newsletter 1/2015

15.10.2014 Join new Technology, Innovation and Design Group

09.10.2014: GETIDOS-Book-Launch