Solidarity Economy, Social Enterprise, and Innovation Discourses: Understanding Hybrid Forms in Postcolonial Colombia
Social Sciences, 8(7)
Dominant conceptions of solidarity economy, social enterprise, and innovation (SSEI) remain poorly positioned for understanding the diverse models emerging across the global South. The purpose of this paper is to examine the power relations between the global North and South in the production and dissemination of SSEI knowledge, highlighting the importance of recognizing alternative discourses in the global South. This contextual analysis is developed through consideration of the construction of the hybrid SSEI model in Colombia, drawing upon postcolonial theory and using Nicholls’ framework on the legitimacy of SSEI discourses. This paper offers the first application of postcolonial theory to the analysis of SSEI in the global South. This research has demonstrated that the construction of the SSEI sector in Colombia is a reflection of the dynamic interplay of the hybrids, as it incorporates the hero entrepreneur and business-like discourses within the traditional community discourse, which indeed is a combination of domestic (indigenous collective practices) and colonizer influences (e.g., cooperatives, associations). This paper also identifies the current tensions that have emerged from such hybridity within the country.