Swiss mountain regions are under pressure: Economic growth is increasingly being questioned in the face of a wide range of challenges. This research project analyzes the role of social innovation in connection with growth issues in the Bernese Oberland. Social innovations are new approaches to solving social and economic challenges that involve new forms of cooperation (e.g. employee sharing in tourism, new forms of basic services, public-private cooperation in the renovation of second homes). We focus on tourism, the construction industry and the health care sector.
From 2024 onwards, social innovations will be part of the federal government's location promotion programme insofar as they trigger regional economic impulses. Social innovations are approaches to solving regional challenges and thus contribute to regional development. A research team from the University of Bern and the Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research (WSL) has examined in detail how social innovations can arise and which actors are involved.