The European Parliament’s Research Department have just published a new briefing on the future for the Social Economy at EU level.
After defining the Social Economy, the briefing focuses on the five pillars for EU intervention on social economy:
1. Access to finance;
2. Access to markets to encourage cooperation between traditional and social economy players;
3. Provision of framework conditions (i.e. mapping of the state of play of the social economy);
4. Innovation and new business models; and
5. International relations.
The briefing highlights how the social economy has been seriously affected by the Coronavirus pandemic and the lockdown measures across Europe. With the Commission initiating several initiatives that could support the social economy such as;
· The framework for temporary state aid measures;
· SURE initiative;
· Coronavirus Response Investment Initiatives (CRII and CRII+);
· Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD);
· European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF); and
· Liquidity measures to help hard-hit Small and medium-sized Enterprises.
In summary, the social economy can help the EU find the right direction out of the current crisis and also play a role. However, the social economy can also contribute on a deeper level to address the issue at the core which is the relationship between knowledge, technology, society and policymaking.