Our Access Europe launch also featured the first in what is to be a series of “Spotlight” policy discussions on key areas of EU policy. This first session specifically highlighted the social economy due to its importance in the future of EU programmes and policy.
This spotlight session included contributions from experts on the social economy and the EU’s Social Economy Action Plan to be published in 2021, including Anne Branch and Shadin Viratham from the European Commission Department for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion and Victor Meseguer, director of the representative body Social Economy Europe.
A significant proportion of Europe's economy is focused on making profits for people other than investors or business owners. Known as the social economy, it includes, non-profit associations, mutual societies, foundations, cooperatives and social enterprises. They engage in broad number of commercial activities, provide a wide range of products and services and generate thousands of jobs in Ireland.
And yet, many Irish organisations are unaware that they fall within this category and, as such, are missing out on opportunities available in this space. A key goal of Access Europe will be promoting an understanding of the social economy in Europe and the opportunities it provides.
Check out this short presentation by Ann Branch from DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion taken from the spotlight session to learn more about the social economy.