Local partnerships between
Social economy and local authorities

REVES was founded because local authorities and social economy in different EU member states and neighbouring countries share the belief that partnership between both actors, compared to traditional public private partnerships, has an added value.

Social economy pursues objectives that are similar to those of a local authority. Economic activities are based on the principles of social inclusion, anti-discrimination and sustainable local development. Moreover, participation of employees and beneficiaries in their decision-making processes is a key element in the set-up and functioning of social economy.

Design and production or delivery of products and services, internal management processes, …, happens with the involvement of different stakeholders.

In addition, social economy enterprises and organisations are deeply rooted at the local level. They dispose of a wide knowledge regarding the needs of their beneficiaries/employees and local environment in general. In addition, it is often them having direct contact with those parts of the population that are often sidelined and/or do not have any opportunities to participate in social, political or economic life.

It is above all in the local community, close to individuals, where we can find untapped potential for a transition to more responsible, fairer, resilient and sustainable societies. To fully use this potential, the roles of each community member, be it companies, elected representatives, public administrators, associations, or single citizens, need to be redefined.

New forms of participation and dialogue between the various members of society, shared decisions and their joint implementation therefore play a crucial role. Local authorities and social economy structures, as promoters of both democracy and the many goals of sustainable local development are well positioned to prompt a revision and re-modelling of responsibilities, initiatives and local services.

Together they can work on, and realize, policies and strategies for local sustainable development that reach beyond the terms of office of local, regional and national governments. Thereby, they are also in a position to significantly contribute to solidarity and cohesion between different cities and regions in Europe and the world.