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The Triple Helix of Social Tech Innovation

At Nominet Trust, we often talk about the Triple Helix of social tech innovation. The ‘Triple’ describes three types of value that social tech ventures need to articulate, develop and evidence in order to grow into successful, sustainable social ventures operating at scale. The ‘Helix’ describes the way in which the three values interrelate at different stages of the venture’s development, and also hints at the dynamic, changing nature of the ways these values are articulated and demonstrated over time.

This paper sets out to describe the Triple Helix against our own model of change, articulating what we expect to see from social tech ventures at different stages of development. This understanding has come from reviewing the ventures and projects we support, observing and analysing developments across the social tech landscape, and crucially from talking with people who live developing social tech innovation.