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Social innovation at CQUni stars in global showcase

Published:21 January 2021

Becoming a Changemaker Institution cover, and CQUni reviewer Dr Tobias Andreasson with some of the Office of Social Innovation team.

CQUniversity’s commitment to social innovation is again in the international spotlight, with a new guidebook from global education leader Ashoka U showcasing several CQUni initiatives.

Becoming a Changemaker Institution distills 12 years of insights from the exclusive network of universities, with CQUni amongst just 22 universities to contribute.

Published late in 2020, the book features case studies on CQUniversity’s whole-of-institution social innovation orientation program iChange, as well as projects to embed social innovation across the curriculum, and the University’s Social Innovation Strategy.

Ashoka U recognised CQUniversity as Australia’s first-ever Changemaker campus in 2017, and reaccredited the role in January 2020.

Since 2017, CQUni has ignited and accelerated more than 5000 changemaker journeys, supporting students, staff and community members to develop social innovation mindsets and practical work-ready skills.

Recently, CQUniversity’s Office of Social Innovation launched iActivate, an online social enterprise course developed in collaboration with Australian sector leader Impact Boom.

And in November, two CQUniversity Brisbane students won the national social enterprise competition The Big Idea, with their life-changing idea to improve motorbike safety.

In 2021, CQUni is also partnering with Queensland Social Enterprise Council and Central Highlands Community Services to deliver a range of education initiatives to support regional social enterprise development.

Becoming a Changemaker features 15 strategies, together with principles, potential actions, tips, and campus examples for developing a “Changemaker Institution”.

CQUniversity Associate Director Academic – Social Innovation Dr Tobias Andreasson was one of the reviewers for the publication, and said CQUni’s inclusion highlighted a wide range of achievements.

“CQUni leaders have done the hard work to identify and promote a social innovation mindset through our learning and teaching, and right across the institution,” he said.

“That work continues, and we’re seeing the benefits now as practical social innovation education is being embedded right across our courses.”

CQUniversity’s 2019-2023 Strategic Plan: Our Future Is You outlines strategies to embed social innovation in curriculum, as well as supporting for-good enterprise with social and Indigenous procurement growth targets.