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Social economy - laying the groundwork for innovative solutions to today's challenges (France)


Social enterprises are prized for their ability to offer innovative solutions to emerging social needs which are not easily tackled by the public sector or private business. Through filling this gap, social enterprises create new opportunities for growth and jobs. Indeed, they contribute to at least three key objectives of the Europe 2020 Strategy - employment and growth, innovation and the fight against poverty.

Host Country : France

Place and date : Paris, 10. - 11.12.2012

Peer countries : Bulgaria - Cyprus - Czech Republic - Germany - Greece - Hungary - Malta - Netherlands - Romania - Slovenia

Stakeholders : Eurodiaconia, FEANTSA

In France, three main ways are being developed to support the growth of the social economy. The first is to increase knowledge about the social economy and its visibility through, for example, collecting statistics for monitoring purposes and establishing common principles for what constitutes the "social economy". Secondly, financial support (totalling EUR 1.9 million) is being made available for young social entrepreneurs. Thirdly, work is underway on creating an environment which nurtures the growth and success of social enterprises, through supportive legislation, access to funding (e.g. the "Investment for the future" programme) and local level support on the ground.

The Peer Review will provide a forum for the exchange of good practice in the areas outlined above; in particular, to discuss the ideas and possible means for funding and the use of the cooperative model in France.

Peer Review manager

Ms Ulrike Hiebl (ÖSB Consulting GmbH)