Legal Frameworks on Social and Solidarity Economy: What is the Role of Civil Society Organizations in Policy Making?
Think pieces for the UNRISD conference “Potential and Limits of Social and Solidarity Economy”. 6-8 May 2013
To respond to the fragmented landscape of legal frameworks on Social and Solidarity Economy (SSE) a variety of countries have been taking initiatives to create overarching legal frameworks that apply to the whole sector. One field within the sector that is characterized by much confusion and that receives little attention is the political participation of non-state actors in recent legal developments concerning SSE. In other words: how do various legal frameworks take into account the policy participation of SSE organizations? In this think piece, I take a closer look at five recent legal initiatives in Spain (2011), Ecuador (2011), Greece (2011), Mexico (2012) and Portugal (2013) and can show that approaches differ in these countries. I ask whether this will affect several aspects:
the autonomy and responsibility of SSE;
the degree of transfer of competency from governmental bodies to the SSE sector;
the composition of consultative bodies;
the representation of, and recognition by, the SSE field of these participatory mechanisms.