Social Europe Guide: Social economy and social entrepreneurship

Research Area: Public policy
Scientific coordinator: Carlo Borzaga

Project status: concluded

The Social Europe Guide is a biannual publication produced by the European Commission, aimed at providing a not necessarily specialized audience with a general overview of EU policy in regards to employment, social affairs and inclusion. The guide illustrates the key issues and challenges in this context, explains the policy actions and instruments used by the EU and also provides examples of best practices from member states.


The fourth volume in the series, written by Euricse, describes the social economy world in Europe, highlighting the characteristics shared by the organizational forms that traditionally belong to this world (cooperatives, associations, mutuals and foundations) and the more recent phenomenon of social entrepreneurship. As well as providing data and examples of the social economy and social entrepreneurship in Europe, the guide illustrates trends towards a greater social responsibility among citizens and consumers, for-profit companies and financial institutions. Finally, it reviews ways in which European and national policies support the social economy and social enterprise.

Main results

The volume was published in English and French by the European Commission in 2013. The Italian translation was produced by Euricse and published in 2014 with support from the Autonomous Province of Trento – Servizio Europa – through the European Social Fund.

A hard copy of the volume can be ordered from the DG for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion website, where the other Social Europe Guide volumes are also available.


European Commission – DG for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion
Autonomous Province of Trento