1963-2013 - 50 years of Research for Social Change

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Back | Programme Area: Social Policies for Inclusive and Sustainable Development

La Presencia de la Economía Social y Solidaria (ESS) y su Institucionalización en América Latina (Draft)



Focusing on Latin America, this paper examines the role of public policies and legal framework related to the institutionalization of Social and Solidarity Economy (SSE). Such SSE institutions can either be formal responses to bottom-up practices and societal demands, or top-down driven interventions. The evolution of institutional reforms during the past decade suggests that a) they can be easily reversed or lose their force via changes in government priorities and parties in power; and b) their consolidation depends on their being actively supported and sustained by collective actors in permanent dialogue with government. This paper considers these issues through an examination of the cases of Argentina, Brazil, Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador. It also places the issue of SSE and state relations in a theoretical context, examining how SSE is positioned in a mixed economy comprising the public economy, the private sector and the popular economy. The paper ends by identifying key aspects of institutional innovations in Latin America, variations in approach among different countries and the possibilities and challenges of expanding and consolidating SSE in Latin America.

José Luis Coraggio is Director of the Social Economy Master (Universidad Nacional de General Sarmiento, Argentina) and co-director of the Red Latinoamericana de Investigadores en Economía Social y Solidaria (RILESS). An economist by training, his recent publications include: Economía Social: Acción pública y política, La Economía social desde la periferia, Qué es lo económico? Materiales para un debate necesario contra el fatalismo, and Economía Social y Solidaria: El trabajo antes que el capital.