Recommendations for professionals and policymakers aiming to improve the field of social entrepreneurship are outlined in the Policy Paper “Building a Sustainable Social Enterprise Sector” published by KMOP-Social Action and Innovation Centre.
The emergence of social enterprises in recent years – businesses that surpass the logic of exclusive economic gain and prioritise social well-being – has sparked a movement towards more inclusive and sustainable economies. These innovative ventures seek to address pressing social and environmental challenges while generating tangible economic value. As modern societal issues become more complex and new challenges arise, the role of social enterprises becomes increasingly vital in achieving meaningful and lasting change.
The Policy Paper draws on real-world insights from social enterprises, aiming to assist young entrepreneurs and individuals in exploring challenges and brainstorming innovative solutions to this end. It also formulates recommendations towards both practitioners and policymakers aspiring to improve fostering of the social economy sector. These recommendations consist of a series of actions based on the experiences and lessons learned during the implementation of the European project EMPOWER.
The Policy Paper includes:
- Identification of the factors that determine the success of a social enterprise
- Acknowledging the key challenges faced by social enterprises and formulating potential ways to address them
- Formulating recommendations towards professionals and policymakers to promote the sustainability and scalability of new and existing social enterprises
- Citing best practices of social enterprises as good examples that can serve as a source of inspiration.
Findings are based on research conducted in Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Ireland, Italy, and Portugal, highlighting common aspects and challenges for social enterprises in these countries. Common challenges include:
- Sustainability and distribution of financial resources, as well as access to funding sources
- Management and strategic issues
- The legal framework that governs their operation
- Public response to the nature and activities of social enterprises.
For the case of Greece, recommendations for social economy entrepreneurs refer to the need for increased cooperation among stakeholders and social sector businesses and a greater degree of extroversion, while recommendations for policymakers include the need for state support and legislation.
The Policy Paper is available HERE.
About the European Project EMPOWER
The Policy Paper was developed within the framework of the European Union Erasmus+ co-funded project EMPOWER-Social Enterprises’ Sustainability Tools. The project has two aims: Firstly, to promote the sustainability and scalability of new and existing social enterprises. And secondly to support young entrepreneurs by developing new learning partnerships between the labour market and aspiring entrepreneurs. The project provides the tools and training needed for young entrepreneurs to develop strategies for their social businesses using modern and empirically informed tools and methods.
The project is implemented by the organisations: KMOP-Social Action and Innovation Centre (Greece), BRCCI – Bulgarian-Romanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Bulgaria), CARDET-Centre for the Advancement of Research & Development in Educational Technology and Innovade Li Ltd (Cyprus), FiP-Future in Perspective Limited (Ireland), SERN-Sweden Emilia Romagna Network (Italy), and Mindshift Talent Advisory (Portugal).
ℹ️ For more information, you can contact KMOP at
[email protected] or at 210 3637547.