rooted in personal and particular: for sustainable, real, radical, long lasting change
hardwiring diversity in leadership
generating robust, responsive and sustainable solutions
combining resourcefulness, opportunity and innovation in practical action
developing business and skills for life through practical learning
outcomes, not process
Long Tail theory “ The theory of the Long Tail is that our culture and economy is increasingly shifting away from a focus on a relatively small number of "hits" [or stars] at the head of the demand curve and toward a huge number of niches in the tail.”
Long Tail numbers “ The potential aggregate size of the many small markets in goods…may rival that of the existing large market in goods” Sales / £
Long Tail of social entrepreneurs The debate around social entrepreneurship is increasingly focused on the “Head”, on scaling up particular ‘star’ organisations or initiatives, whilst the Long Tail’s potential aggregate impact is relatively ignored. Scale Social Entrepreneurs / Enterprises Social Impact The Social Marketplace?
Benefits of the Tail
Local, niche and fit-to-purpose solutions
Empowering many people: a movement
Additional benefits beyond direct impact
‘ 1000 flowers’: new innovations, entrants and ‘stars’
Inefficient use of resources : funding and expertise
Duplication of activity, rather than multiplication
Slower in delivering desired impact?
More expensive in the long term
Inappropriate to the scale of problems /needs?
Risks / critiques of the Tail
Risks / critiques of the Head
Generic solutions imposed from above/outside
Smaller numbers involved : risk of elitism?
Additional benefits not multiplied
Fewer new innovations and leaders emerging
Pressure to scale (model unproven / org’n unready)
Avoidance of duplication / reinvention of wheel
Promotion of the movement through stars/hits
Effective maximisation of social impact…
...and through accelerated development (efficient)
Benefits of the Head
How far can we apply the theory?
internet: democratised production & distribution
access and architecture/infrastructure
what are the bottlenecks and barriers?
filters: how to find quality or “who are the tastemakers” (pre and post)
amplification of gap between winners and others
can’t be only Long Tail
Responses and questions
How can we effectively support the long tail?
How can the Head and Tail co-operate, interact and bridge the gap?
How big a problem is duplicated effort and delivery (and how do we tackle it)?
What is your 2020 vision of the long tail effect? How far can we mainstream the mavericks?