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Social and Solidarity-based Economy and Territory

From Embeddedness to Co-construction

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Edited By CIRIEC, Xabier Itçaina and Nadine Richez-Battesti

The articulation between the social and solidarity-based economy (SSE) and territory is not self-evident. For the contributions to this volume, the challenge was one of disentangling these interrelations by avoiding two pitfalls. The first, the idealist perspective, sees SSE as the magic answer to all neoliberalism-related ills. The demystifing perspective, by contrast, emphasizes the relentless routinization and isomorphism of SSE enterprises, which eventually end up resorting to market-oriented and/or public economy oriented models. Local case studies can extricate from this dilemma. Close observation of complex local configurations where public, private, associative and cooperative actors and issues are deeply entangled, enables to achieve a nuanced understanding of the territorial dynamics of the SSE. This book is the result of the International Ciriec working group on SSE and territory (http://www.ciriec.uliege.be/en/research/commission-es/themes-en-cours/theme-de-recherche-1-2). It emanates from an interdisciplinary dialogue conducted among researchers from nine countries and two continents, Europe and America. If contexts vary from one country to another, the contributions underline the capacity of SSE to elaborate original inputs to social, economic and sustainable local development. Based on original case studies, the contributions illustrate different strategies of SSE organisations in their respective territories. SSE provides an innovative answer to changes in socio-economic and political regulations, by promoting new forms of territorial cooperation. Despite the differences between the case studies, all the chapters of this book contribute towards a balanced approach to the territorial regimes of the SSE which interweaves socio-economic approaches to local and community development, analysis of SSE governance, social mobilizations and territorial policymaking.

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Introduction: Changing Social Economies in Changing Territories (Nadine Richez-Battesti)

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Introduction

Changing Social Economies in Changing Territories

Nadine RICHEZ-BATTESTI

Aix-Marseille University, LEST-CNRS UMR 7317

This book is the result of an International Ciriec Working Group on social and solidarity economy and territory. It is the fruit of an interdisciplinary dialogue among researchers from nine countries and two continents, Europe and America. If contexts widely vary from one country to another, the different contributions underline the capacity of social and solidarity-based economy (SSE) to elaborate original inputs to social, economic and sustainable development. Generally focused on original case studies, at a geographical or organizational level, papers illustrate different strategies of SSE in their territories: answer to socio economic or political changes, renewal and increased heterogeneity of territorial cooperations? More specifically, they show the diversity of links between SSE and territory at a meso-economic scale and different articulations with politics and policies. Most of the time, their embeddedness depends on the intensity of their networks and their capacity to renew it along the time.

We first present the general framework elaborated for this book before introducing the two parts and their components.

1.  A neo-institutionalist framework

1.1.  Territory as a social construction

The relation to the territory is a central element of the social and solidarity-based economy (SSE) to the point of being presented by the actors from the field as one of its constitutive values. The forms of ← 13 | 14 → anchorage...

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