Social Production: appreciation, sustainability, responsibility

Social added value, sustainable economic activity, and environmental consciousness

Social Production is effective in all dimensions of sustainability. With one of its focusses on social sustainability, it also has strong relations towards economic and ecological dimensions. Finally, Social Production also touches the political dimension of sustainability through its closeness and conscious exercise of influence on politics, which, however, has not been able to become accepted in scientific discourse.


Social Production creates social added value

The frequently underexposed social dimension of sustainability plays a crucial role in Social Production on various levels. Social Production strengthens social occupational enterprises through procuration and support of suitable orders in their task of integration of disadvantaged persons into the labour market and their participation in working life, respectively. Social Production is intended to help disadvanted persons perform appreciative and sensible work. Thereby, it indirectly contributes towards social balance and more equality of opportunities in society. 

Social Production facilitates economic enterprises to actively assume social responsibility and a conscious cooperation with social enterprises at the interface between social and economic sustainability.


Social Production as sustainable economic activity

Social Production is understood as a comprehensive type of sustainable economic activity. This project contributes to the saving of resources by a targeted furthering of sustainable high-quality products and services. The furthering of regional cooperation helps cut down on routes of transport, production in occupational projects qualifies and integrates disadvantaged persons, and supports safeguarding of employment. Social Production strengthens regional value creation as well as small and medium-sized enterprises, and it can contribute to a better use to capacity and increase in efficiency of (largely or) partly publicly financed social enterprises. Finally, it is an incentive for economic enterprises to assume active social responsibility.


Social Production strengthens environmental consciousness and regional development

Social Production furthers products of renewable resources or recycling material in a well-directed way, and thus makes a contribution to active environmental protection. Through the procuration of regional partners of cooperation, routes of transport are minimized, and regional development is strengthened, especially due to the fact that a large number of occupational projects are situated in regions lacking infrastructure and rural regions. Some social enterprises are explicitly dedicated to ecological social agriculture. Finally, the carbon footprint of regionally produced products is clearly better than the one of globally imported goods.


The potential of social economy on the European scale

Also on behalf of the European Commission, social enterprises and occupational projects increasingly gain consideration. The WISE (Work Integration Social Enterprises as a tool for promoting inclusion) project leads the European Commission’s Directorate General for Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities to conclude the following:

“Social economy consistently increases in significance, and still offers a considerable potential, which can be tapped, in order to

  • create high-value employment,
  • let persons work and keep their jobs, who are currently excluded from the labour market,
  • strengthen social, economic and regional solidarity,
  • give rise to social capital,
  • further active citizenship, solidarity, and an economy based on democratic values,
  • support sustainable development and social, ecological and technological innovation.”


In this context, sustainable effects in the fields of creation of jobs, safeguarding social cohesion, and contributions towards ecological and technological innovation are explicitly mentioned.

Soziale Produktion und Nachhaltigkeit: 15.Nov.2012 Teilen Share on Google+