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EESC – Collaborative economy report adopted!

The European Economic and Social Committee, on 14 December 2016, adopted its report on the collaborative economy.

In this report it calls on the European Commission and policy-makers in general to give priority to initiatives that “are founded on democratic, solidarity-based and inclusive governance”.

The Commission’s approach towards the Collaborative Economy and in particular its tendency to mix concepts such as digital platforms and the sharing economy are sharply criticized.

Throughout the report the EESC calls for intensified work on the “new economy”, with particular attention to promoting those initiatives that enhance cooperation and solidarity.

REVES Excellence Award 2017 – Call for good practices now open!

The third edition of the REVES Award emerges in a scenario full of important policy debates at the European level: the imminent mid-term review of the Multiannual Financial Framework 2014-2020, including the European Structural and Investment Funds, the shaping of the European Pillar of Social Rights, but also the precious opportunity of integrating the social economy sector in a European Action Plan.

More than ever, Europe is facing the urgency of a governance reform, able to take into account the real needs of communities and people, and putting the latter at the core of solution paths aimed at tackling unmet needs and problems.

REVES’ mission since its inception, in 1996, has been the promotion of partnership between local/regional authorities and social economy organisations towards a fair, inclusive and sustainable development emerging from the local level and crucial for the achievement of global goals. This is the direction in which we are walking to concretely transform challenges into general interest opportunities, and we don’t want to keep it secret!

In 2013, the first edition of the REVES Excellence Award has been established precisely to make this kind of alliance and its achievements more visible. At the same time, it aimed to foster the emergence of new partnerships between these two actors.

The huge success of the first two editions convinced us to launch a call for the REVES Excellence Award 2017, to continue sharing the best partnership experiences’ examples all over Europe!

Check out the complete Call for good practices and discover the topics selected for the third edition’s working examples!

Candidatures can be submitted in English, French and Italian, both by Regional and Local authorities or Social Economy and related organisations – using the downloadable application form –  to: info@revesnetwork.eu

Deadline: 28 February 2017

Don’t miss the chance to share your unique experience at European level.

Give it more visibility!

The Bratislava Conference on Social Economy is around the corner!

On November 30th and December 1st, under the Slovak presidency of the Council of the EU, the conference Social Economy as a key player in providing effective answers to current societal challenges in the EU and the world will be held in Bratislava. It will be the occasion to inform about the importance, possibilities and different attributes of social economy.

The final report from the European Commission Expert Group on Social Entrepreneurship (GECES) entitled “Social enterprises & the social economy going forward” will be officially presented during the event.

Felice Scalvini, REVES Co-President, will  attend as speaker.

Here the Agenda and some practical information for the conference.

To register please contact andrea.vanovicova@employment.gov.sk or beata.maskulikova@employment.gov.sk

Social economy Intergroup of the European Parliament – Public hearing: “The role of the social economy for a successful European Pillar of Social Rights”

The public hearing will be the occasion to have an exchange of views on the crucial role of the social economy sector towards a successful European Pillar of Social Rights.

When & Where: Thursday 17th of November 2016 – European Parliament, Brussels, room A3G-3.

Please find HERE the full programme of the hearing.

To register, please send an e-mail to contact@socialeconomy.eu.org before Monday 14 November. In case you need an accreditation to the EP, please include your following information: full name, type of ID, ID number,date of birth and nationality.

Social enterprises gaining ground in Europe: new country reports available!

The European Commission is currently updating the map of social enterprises and their eco-systems in Europe which was first published in 2014 and criticized by a number of players.

New  country reports from Italy, Belgium, Spain, France, Slovakia, Ireland and Poland are now available. Moreover, a more general EU report outlines the latest developments in Europe and shows a net increase of social enterprises and jobs created by them compared to other type of enterprises.

 For more information click HERE.

Housing and social inclusion of refugees. Congratulations to Wind of Renewal for the WELCOMMON project kick-off!

REVES welcomes the launching of WELCOMMON – the social innovative project for refugees – by the greek partners of the social cooperative Wind of Renewal !

On 12 of October 2016, the social cooperative welcomed the first group of refugees in a fully renovated building, located in the center of Athens.

On October 2015, Wind of Renewal, started to elaborate a scheme that could give a sustainable solution to one of the main challenges that greek society is facing: the refugee issue.

Wind of Renewal aims to cover both the needs of refugees and of the local society.

WELCOMMON is a social innovative project as it offers:

To the refugees:
– decent and safe accommodation, food and cover for basic needs
– psychosocial support
– cultural training
– social integration

To the local community:
– new jobs (28 at the moment)
– professional training
– professional specialization
– a boost to the greek economy

Please find enclosed a brief description of the project and some
photos – and do not hesitate to contact Ms Polina Gkioka (tispolinas@gmail.com) for more information or ideas!

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Brussels, December 5 – Conference on Platform Cooperativism

On December 5, REVES is invited to participate in the conference  “Towards a fair sharing economy: The role and place of cooperative platforms” organised by La Coop des Communs, Confrontations Europe, P2P Foundation, SMart, Ouishare and Cecop.

Digital platforms are powerful tools for matching needs, cooperation and sharing information, but they also raise property, governance, democracy issues. Can we do more than describing the dangers of concentration and value chain capture of most powerful digital firms? Can we try to control the situation or, even better, go one step ahead? What kind of solutions can we find relying on “commons »? Can social and solidarity economy (SSE) “collective” organisations (cooperatives, mutualities, associations…) contribute to fairer solutions and be a part of a new European political project?

At the conference, activists of the commons and the social and solidarity economy will give examples of how fair and sharing platforms can be created and show the variety of models, the opportunities and challenges they represent for legislation and society. Regulation of the practices, needs for support and public policies will be discussed.

The conference will take place in the European Economic and Social Committee, Brussels EESC Building – Room VMA 3 (2nd floor); 2 rue Van Maerlant – 1040 – Brussels on Monday, December 5, 2016 from 9am to 5pm.

Please find here the draft agenda.

Registration: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1HLdsPaBRvaYDinvOBCGoNRBMjau6E5DH2lN9CCa8ObI/edit

If you encounter any problems, please contact Louise Decourcelle ldecourcelle@confrontations.org

CICOPA has designed the Youth Cooperative Entrepreneurship campaign – Make a contribution!

CICOPA has designed a one-year Youth Cooperative Entrepreneurship campaign to let the world know how young people can satisfy their needs & contribute to a better society through the creation of worker, social and producers’ cooperatives.

This campaign aims to:

  • Promote cooperative entrepreneurship and employment among the youth in the world;
  • Create an impact on governments, international organizations and regional integration entities regarding cooperative entrepreneurship and employment through worker, social and producers’ cooperatives among the youth.

Four main actions are planned:

  • A website designed for young people interested in creating a cooperative. This website will provide visibility to the campaign and is aimed at attracting young people towards worker, social and producers’ cooperatives by providing both concrete cases and information & practical information on how to establish them.
  • A publication on youth cooperative entrepreneurship will analyse the trends among young people in establishing worker, social and producers’ cooperatives around the world. Recommendations for policies at international, regional and national level will be included to enable and foster its establishment.
  • The promotion of the video highlighting examples of cooperatives created by young people. CICOPA, together with its regional organizations, has recently produced the video Working Together for a Cooperative Future sharing nine stories of cooperatives around the world. The video will be promoted widely & translated into other languages.
  • A final conference will analyse the possibilities offered by worker, social and producers’ cooperatives to young people in order to respond to their entrepreneurial and employment needs through values such as common ownership, democratic governance, self-realisation, empowerment and responsible attitude toward the community.

The one-year Youth Cooperative Entrepreneurship campaign will be launched in December 2016, but the required funds still need to be collected.

Do you want to make this campaign real? Then donate here!

For any further information, download the introductory document of the CICOPA Youth Cooperative Entrepreneurship campaign here.

“SAVING JOBS!” – kick-off meeting of the project boosting transfer of enterprises to workers

On 8-9 September 2016, REVES took part in the first fruitful meeting of the Saving Jobs project consortium which will implement, until mid-2017, a number of activities aiming at improving the environment for transferring businesses to workers/employees by organizing them in a cooperative form, and to raise awareness about the benefits of the cooperative model.

REVES will contribute to the initiative in particular by exploring and strengthening the role of local and regional authorities in the context of cooperative worker buyouts.

Discover more downloading HERE the first Saving Jobs! press release.

15/09/2016 – EP Resolution “How best to harness the job creation potential of SMEs?”

On 15 September 2016, the plenary session of the European Parliament has approved the resolution on how best to harness the job creation potential of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) (2015/2320(INI)).

The document is aimed at supporting SMEs in their efforts to combat unemployment (8,9%) and youth unemployment (19,4%) rates, since SMEs provide about two thirds of all private-sector employment in the EU, soundly contributing to the growth and development of the Union.

The text recalls the fact that the social and solidarity-based economy has shown better resilience during the economic crisis than other enterprises in the same sectors, strengthening economic, social and territorial cohesion, while also contributing to smarter, sustainable and inclusive growth, particularly in rural regions.

The text considers that EU and national policies should not only focus on SME start-ups and the creation of new jobs in SMEs and calls for efforts to maintain existing jobs through the promotion of business transfers to employees under the cooperative form as successful types of business transfers, as is proven by their high survival rates and thanks to their capacity to reinforce sustainability and employment.

The European Parliament asks Member States to foster the development of a strong entrepreneurial culture, also through the promotion of apprenticeship schemes within SMEs.

Moreover, the document calls on the Member States to enforce the legislation on the equal access of SMEs to public procurement.

Being aware of the need for a regulatory environment that encourages investment that “concurrently fosters sustainable growth and quality jobs”, the European Parliament emphasises the importance of the social and solidarity-based economy, which provides employment for more than 14 million people, in other words close to 6.5 % of workers in the EU, and recognizes access to finance as a barrier faced by social economy enterprises in particular.

The text also mentions social economy enterprises and cooperative entrepreneurship while underlining the role of forward-looking legislation and process facilitation in the context of rapid developments in the knowledge-intensive and highly innovative SME sector.