Social Enterprise in Ireland

9 Mar

A People’s economy? Social Enterprise in Ireland (Abstract from book edited by Gerard Doyle & Tanya Lalor)

Concept of Social Enterprise has gained recognition around the world an in Ireland in recent years and is an alternative for profit hungry companies and shareholders. It could also be a response to the economic trouble of past few years.
The concept of Social Enterprise is associated with new co-operative initiatives in Italy during the late 80’s. The change from traditional co-operatives oriented toward members interests is in the emphasis for community interest.
Diverse understanding of Social enterprise caused that there is no universally accepted single definition. Common definition is from UK’s Department of Trade and Industry:
Social Enterprise is a business with primarily social objectives whose surpluses are principally reinvested for that purpose in the business or community, rather than being driven by the need to maximize profit for shareholders and owners.

European Commission is  defining a social business as one:

  • whose primary objective is to achieve social impact rather than generating profit for owners and shareholders;
  • which operates in the market through the production of goods and services in an entrepreneurial and innovative way;
  • which uses surpluses mainly to achieve these social goals and
  • which is managed by social entrepreneurs in an accountable and transparent way, in particular by involving workers, customers and stakeholders affected by its business activity.

Usaefull links

Social Enterprise Network in Ireland

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