Mapping International SSE Mapping Exercises

Coline Compère, Barbara Sak, Jérôme Schoenmaeckers, August 2021

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Summary :

Mapping social and solidarity economy (SSE) organizations requires tackling numerous issues. This paper first outlines how key mapping exercises dealing with the SSE were selected for this first review process, 2020 being the cutoff date for inclusion. The diversity of concepts and scopes, including or excluding organizations and entities, is then discussed and the two main frameworks (“social economy approach” and “NPO approach”) are reviewed briefly. The second chapter looks at the literature contributing to creating, presenting and developing SSE statistics. The selected mapping exercises were then divided into three types: 1) administrative, legal and institutional data containing statistical information; 2) international research on SSE contributing to the development of statistical methodology and data; and 3) thematic maps that portray the geographic pattern of SSE. The third and main chapter of the paper discusses how selected SSE organizations are classified, based on criteria such as the sector of activity or the geographical scale. Other classification filters are time range, replicability, and implementers of the mappings. The annexes are extremely useful as they contain all the information for the different mapping exercises listed. A last section places the different mappings in graphical representation according to Bouchard and Salathé-Beaulieu (2021), with respect to the two main frameworks (“social economy approach” and “NPO approach”). The paper concludes with an assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of this first mapping exercise, as well as with recommendations for future work.

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