The Social Economy

Building Inclusive Economies

image of The Social Economy

Social economy -- also known as 'non-profit' or 'third sector' -- organisations have grown in number and relevance, contributing to employment, social inclusion, democratic participation and community building. Much remains to be done, however, to create the necessary enabling environment to support their creation and development and to mainstream the sector in economic and social policies. This publication offers new insights into the economic theory of social economy organisations, their role in an evolving political and economic context, and the links to local development and the empowerment of users. Building on theoretical and empirical developments in OECD member countries, the publication also presents the main challenges for the social economy in Central East and South East Europe. Recommendations for action are included.


A Supportive Financing Framework for Social Economy Organisations

In recent years, social economy organisations have assumed an important position in Central and Eastern European. They have strengthened their role of representing citizens’ interests and have been providing a myriad of activities to address the different needs of various groups in society. Governments and social economy organisations have worked together to develop laws that guide their establishment and operation. However, the laws that should enable social economy organisations to draw from different resources to implement their activities and support their sustainability remain a challenge. This chapter provides a comparative overview of the legal issues that require consideration in developing strategic policies for supporting the sustainability of social economy organisations. It discusses issues such as: the legal framework for the establishment and governance of social economy organisations; the extent to which publicly beneficial organisations are distinguished and supported; and, the effect of different resources on the viability of social economy organisations. The innovative approaches adopted by different countries to address the challenges in government funding are also explored. By analysing these issues the chapter aims to underscore the important role of the policy and legal environments for the viability of social economy organisations. It also emphasises the need to enable social economy organisations to use a diverse range of resources to support their activities and to allow them to undertake them in a creative and sustainable manner.


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