“Social Economy- How to scale up?”
The European Economic and Social Committee held a conference on the 4th of June in Brussels on the topic of how social enterprises can scale up. Successful social enterprises shared their experiences on the road to success. The aim of the event was to propagate the social enterprise model and at the same time create a space for discussions on how to create an impact, have gender equality, and to scale up.
Nicholas Schmit (Ministry of Labour, Employment, Social and Solidarity Economy, Luxembourg). In Luxembourg they had adopted social economy and now see it is vital to be adopted on a larger scale too encourage entrepreneurs to adopt social economy standards. The hope is that social economy is adopted on the level of large enterprises. Start-ups already adopt the social economy approach and Schmit hopes this gains ground and becomes more popular around Europe. Time to be concrete and to develop social economy strategy on the European scale. Also, in Africa, Balkans, etc. The international community has a role to play in helping social enterprises scale up.
Christophe Itier (High Commissioner for Social Economy and Solidarity Economy and Social Innovation, FR) sees that political and economic influencers/decision makers have wrong or different ideas about social economy scaling up (increasing the visibility is often undervalued). They don’t think it is economically viable and it is just a means for social help, but this is simply not true. Therefore, it is necessary to make social enterprises more visible and show that it can be sustainable and economically profitable.