The Institutions of Livelihood and Social Enterprise Systems

26 Pages Posted: 15 Jan 2020

See all articles by Silvia Sacchetti

Silvia Sacchetti

University of Trento; European Research Institute on Cooperative & Social Enterprises (EURICSE)

Carlo Borzaga

University of Trento; European Research Institute on Cooperative & Social Enterprises (EURICSE)

Ermanno C. Tortia

University of Trento - Department of Economics and Management; Euricse

Date Written: December 15, 2019

Abstract

This paper considers resource coordination in production systems featuring the presence of enterprises and organizations pursuing social, health-related, educational, cultural, and environmental aims, or social enterprises (SEs). The resource coordination problem is one of allocating and distributing resources towards these aims. By their very nature, these goals are very close to the Polanyian idea of the primacy of society over the self-regulating market. We ask what the specificities of organisations that pursue social aims are, and what coordination mechanisms underpin their production. The premise is that individuals are driven by plural motivations, including pro-social motivations besides self-interested ones, thus requiring a plurality of coordination mechanisms. The paper suggests that SEs make principal use of cooperative pacts based on norms of reciprocity, but include also market and state-led coordination, both at organisational and systemic levels. We consider specific institutional solutions in support of cooperation and reciprocity. These are: combined rules on profit and asset distribution, surplus accumulation and redistribution, and multi-stakeholding.

Keywords: Social enterprise, Polanyi, Resource coordination, Cooperation, Motivations, Multi-stakeholding, Deliberation, Public interest, Systemic governance

JEL Classification: L31, L21, B55, P00

Suggested Citation

Sacchetti, Silvia and Borzaga, Carlo and Tortia, Ermanno C., The Institutions of Livelihood and Social Enterprise Systems (December 15, 2019). Euricse Working Papers No. 109, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3519810 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3519810

Silvia Sacchetti (Contact Author)

University of Trento ( email )

Via Giuseppe Verdi 26
Trento, Trento 38152
Italy

European Research Institute on Cooperative & Social Enterprises (EURICSE)

Via S. Giovanni 36
38122 Trento (TN)
Italy

Carlo Borzaga

University of Trento ( email )

Via Giuseppe Verdi 26
Trento, Trento 38152
Italy

European Research Institute on Cooperative & Social Enterprises (EURICSE) ( email )

Via S. Giovanni 36
38122 Trento (TN)
Italy

Ermanno C. Tortia

University of Trento - Department of Economics and Management ( email )

Via Inama, 5
Trento, TN Trento 38122
Italy
00390461882383 (Phone)
00390461882222 (Fax)

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