Public purchases: a lever for transformation
Cooperative and not-for-profit models have been set up in many countries in recent decades, particularly in the homecare services sector. They fulfil social functions not covered by the state or market, in areas such as education, health and integration.
As is the case in Canada, to some extent, the social and solidarity economy can be recognized as having obvious potential as an effective tool for addressing a number of themes linked to public policies, such as infancy, solidarity-based partnerships between farmers and consumers for local high quality food, environmental sustainability and sustainable energy solutions. This recognition should go hand in hand with the introduction of public policies and regulations that encourage this potential.
In areas where the SSE operates—such as water management systems run by the community, ressourceries and improved waste management, social integration via job creation, co-design of public services that better meet people’s needs, mainly marginalized populations, and solidarity finance for better access to credit—tax incentive systems, public purchase programmes for integration or less polluting businesses, and investments in companies that create jobs, reduce their carbon footprint or offer innovative resource management solutions can make all the difference. The task is to set up a coherent system that makes it easier for SSE initiatives, in their different forms, to obtain the financial and technical means that provide access to public contracts and public investments, along with legislation that backs up the sector’s commitment and action within the paradigm of an economy that is once again at the service of people.
4 case studies
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives Manitoba
Lynne Fernandez, January 2016
European Network for Rural Development, 2012
The LANDMARK consortium
5 Analyses/working papers/articles
Ciência Rural, Santa Maria, Online
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs UK
An overview of UK’s third sector landscape and its public policy framework on social enterprise and public procurement.
Judith Hitchman, April 2009
A pedagogical tool
Buy Social, 2014