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The European Social Economy: Concept And Dimensions Of The Third Sector


  • José Luis Monzon
  • Rafael Chaves


In recent years a new context has emerged in Europe characterized by a larger growing Europe, the creation of a new European platform for social economy named 'Social Economy Europe' and an improvement in research, networks and initiatives in this area from certain European Institutions such as the European Social and Economic Committee. This paper focuses on recurrent, but needing clarification, topics such as the question of definitions, the national recognition of the concept of Social Economy and the size of this European third sector. It begins with a proposition of a conceptual delimitation of the Social Economy and of the different classes of company and organization that belong to it. Second, it identifies the different agents which, irrespective of their legal form, are part of the Social Economy in each of the member states of the European Union and to compare the different national definitions that are related to the Social Economy concept. Finally, it provides quantitative data on the European Social Economy. Copyright © 2008 The Authors Journal compilation © CIRIEC 2008.

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  • José Luis Monzon & Rafael Chaves, 2008. "The European Social Economy: Concept And Dimensions Of The Third Sector," Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 79(3-4), pages 549-577, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:annpce:v:79:y:2008:i:3-4:p:549-577

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    Cited by:

    1. Juan Julià & Rafael Chaves, 2012. "Introduction: social economy, a third sector in a plural people-oriented economy," Service Business, Springer;Pan-Pacific Business Association, vol. 6(1), pages 1-4, March.
    2. Nil Özçağlar-Toulouse & Amina Béji-Bécheur & Patrick Murphy, 2009. "Fair Trade in France: From Individual Innovators to Contemporary Networks," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 90(4), pages 589-606, December.
    3. Ricardo Server Izquierdo & Jordi Capó Vicedo, 2012. "Corporate social responsibility of financial organizations in the social economy: a case study on savings banks," Service Business, Springer;Pan-Pacific Business Association, vol. 6(1), pages 99-115, March.
    4. Josefina Fernández-Guadaño, 2014. "Employee-owned and capitalist firms: is performance linked to ownership?," Service Business, Springer;Pan-Pacific Business Association, vol. 8(4), pages 541-558, December.
    5. Rafael Chaves & Jose Monzón, 2012. "Beyond the crisis: the social economy, prop of a new model of sustainable economic development," Service Business, Springer;Pan-Pacific Business Association, vol. 6(1), pages 5-26, March.
    6. Francisco J. SÁEZ‐FERNÁNDEZ & Andrés J. PICAZO‐TADEO & Carmen M. LLORCA‐RODRÍGUEZ, 2012. "Do Labour Societies Perform Differently To Cooperatives? Evidence From The Spanish Building Industry," Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 83(1), pages 61-81, March.

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