Social and Solidarity Economy Gaining Visibility at the United Nations

September 23, 2013

This week, the United Nations Research Institute on Social Development (UNRISD) reported that the Social and Solidarity Economy is gaining visibility in national policy circles as well as within the United Nations system.  Several new initiatives and publications bear witness to this:

  • The UN’s Civil Society Consultations on the Post-2015 Development Agenda includes a recommendation to scale up the social and solidarity economy (p.11), referencing Winnipeg’s Neechi Foods as illustrative of the case for a “community economic development planning process geared towards developing a convergent, self-reliant local economy based upon community economic development principles: maximizing income retention, strengthening and promoting economic linkages and maximizing community employment.” (p.67)
  • UNRISD’s latest publications include think pieces on Community Development Banks in Brazil, Complementary Currencies in Kenya and the Mondragon cooperative in Spain.  These think pieces build on the UNRISD’s Social and Solidarity Economy conference that took place last May in collaboration with the International Labour Organization and the UN Non-Governmental Liaison Service.  The SSE conference event brief is now available.  
  • UNRISD will be participating in the 5th RIPESS International Meeting of Social Solidarity Economy that will take place October 15-18 in Manila, Philippines.  Representatives from CCEDNet and the Chantier de l’économie sociale will also be participating from Canada and Québec. 
  • UNRISD is launching an initiative on the contribution of co-operatives to sustainable development, in collaboration with the ILO Cooperatives Unit and the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA). As part of this initiative a background study is being drafted to be presented in policy roundtables, conferences and seminars in 2013-14. The study will be informed by a survey and in-depth interviews with representatives of the cooperative movement from around the world. If you are affiliated with a cooperative, you are invited to take a moment to complete the survey. By providing your input you will contribute to communicating the critical role co-operatives play in achieving sustainable development goals. The deadline for the survey is October 15, 2013.
  • A new Social and Solidarity Economy LinkedIn group is stimulating dialogue and networking between practitioners, researchers and policy makers around the world.  As a member you can exchange ideas about SSE, inform others of your work and get connected to colleagues from all over the world. Comments can be posted in your preferred language, and becoming a member is free of charge.

You can sign up for future UNRISD bulletins on their website.