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.


Diverse Approaches and Practices in Europe and Canada

Divided into three distinct sections, this chapter provides an overview of the different approaches to the social economy in the European Union and in Canada, which, with its strong European influences, has utilised and engaged with many European approaches to the social economy. Opening with a discussion of the development of the linkages between the economy and ideas of solidarity, the first section goes on to explore the contemporary development of the social economy within the European Union. The development of the social economy in Canada during the 1970s and 1980s, particularly in Quebec, is examined in the second section. Finally, the chapter concludes with a discussion of the way in which researchers have sought to portray the “new social economy” and the links between it and ideas of social entrepreneurship and social innovation.


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