The study explored the opportunities and challenges that digital technologies pose for the social economy and social enterprises, and obtained a better understanding of the ways in which the design and implementation of EU and national policies and initiatives (can) support the digitisation and uptake of novel digital technologies for the social economy.
Our Study Team led by Q-PLAN INTERNATIONAL and supported by the Manchester Institute of Innovation Research/University of Manchester and the Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology / United National University and supplemented by Dr V. Kostakis, Dr. C. Giotitsas, Dr E. Amanatidou and Dr F. Niglia, accomplished to:
- Explore how digital platforms and advanced digital technologies are currently used by social economy initiatives, and what implications this poses on regulations, labour and skills
- Reflect upon the requirements, implications, challenges and obstacles associated with the digitalisation of social economy initiatives through the identification, in-depth analysis and exploration of 32 digitalised social economy initiatives identified in the following 4 EU countries: Greece, Italy, The Netherlands, and the UK
- Vision possible futures and potential trajectories of advanced digital technologies – including platforms, open source and disruptive digital technologies (AI, Big Data, etc.) – and what their implications may be upon social economy and social enterprises
- Provide recommendations and practical policy suggestions to EU Member States policy and decision-makers for designing and implementing policies and measures that can promote and facilitate the digitalisation and uptake of digital technologies by social economy and social enterprises
- Facilitate the identification, promotion and uptake of lessons learnt on how new technologies inspire the social economy and social entrepreneurship, and how such technologies can be inspired by social economy practices.
For the accomplishment of these objectives, a multimodal methodological approach, combining quantitative as well as qualitative means and methodologies, case studies, interviews, foresight and policy workshops was implemented.