Unlocking the potential of rural social enterprise

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

25 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

In this paper, we argue that social enterprise could represent a means of tackling rural challenges of providing sustainable economic development, addressing the withdrawal of public services and promoting community cohesion. The paper draws upon a review of existing academic as well as policy literature and develops a conceptual framework that helps to understand how to unlock the potential contribution of social enterprises to rural development. Drawing on an exploratory study conducted in two rural areas of Scotland we use interview data from social enterprise stakeholders to populate the conceptual framework and its rural (geographic), policy and social enterprise domains. Our study suggests that social enterprises can potentially enable an integrated approach to addressing local issues at the local level. They can create locally responsive services that fit the rural context. However, unlocking the potential of rural social enterprise may require moving beyond traditional policy silo approaches that treat economic development, community cohesion and public services as separate and disconnected since national policy-making frameworks have not always translated into practice at the rural level. Additionally, policy treatment of social enterprise needs to move beyond efforts to ‘scale up’ and achieve economies of scale. Collaborations between groups of social enterprises, and between social enterprises and public authorities can lead to economies of scope, particularly where strong trust-based relations within communities harness self-help and the co-production of services. With appropriate guidance and support, many rural challenges and needs could be transformed into opportunities for social enterprise development. In highlighting the opportunities and challenges faced by rural social enterprises, the paper suggests potential research gaps that, if filled, could contribute towards recognising and unlocking their full potential.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)144-154
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Rural Studies
Volume70
Early online date30 Dec 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2019

Fingerprint

public service
conceptual framework
cohesion
economic development
self help
economy of scale
rural development
policy making
integrated approach
rural area
stakeholder
group cohesion
policy
community
coproduction
economy
policy approach
public authorities
self-help
withdrawal

Keywords

  • social enterprise
  • welfare provision
  • rural development

Cite this

@article{8faf5c7f8fd14284a32fb8f2c5a96cb1,
title = "Unlocking the potential of rural social enterprise",
abstract = "In this paper, we argue that social enterprise could represent a means of tackling rural challenges of providing sustainable economic development, addressing the withdrawal of public services and promoting community cohesion. The paper draws upon a review of existing academic as well as policy literature and develops a conceptual framework that helps to understand how to unlock the potential contribution of social enterprises to rural development. Drawing on an exploratory study conducted in two rural areas of Scotland we use interview data from social enterprise stakeholders to populate the conceptual framework and its rural (geographic), policy and social enterprise domains. Our study suggests that social enterprises can potentially enable an integrated approach to addressing local issues at the local level. They can create locally responsive services that fit the rural context. However, unlocking the potential of rural social enterprise may require moving beyond traditional policy silo approaches that treat economic development, community cohesion and public services as separate and disconnected since national policy-making frameworks have not always translated into practice at the rural level. Additionally, policy treatment of social enterprise needs to move beyond efforts to ‘scale up’ and achieve economies of scale. Collaborations between groups of social enterprises, and between social enterprises and public authorities can lead to economies of scope, particularly where strong trust-based relations within communities harness self-help and the co-production of services. With appropriate guidance and support, many rural challenges and needs could be transformed into opportunities for social enterprise development. In highlighting the opportunities and challenges faced by rural social enterprises, the paper suggests potential research gaps that, if filled, could contribute towards recognising and unlocking their full potential.",
keywords = "social enterprise, welfare provision, rural development",
author = "Artur Steiner and Simon Teasdale",
note = "Acceptance from webpage AAM: 18m embargo",
year = "2019",
month = "8",
doi = "10.1016/j.jrurstud.2017.12.021",
language = "English",
volume = "70",
pages = "144--154",
journal = "Journal of Rural Studies",
issn = "0743-0167",
publisher = "Elsevier B.V.",

}

Unlocking the potential of rural social enterprise. / Steiner, Artur; Teasdale, Simon.

In: Journal of Rural Studies, Vol. 70, 08.2019, p. 144-154.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Unlocking the potential of rural social enterprise

AU - Steiner, Artur

AU - Teasdale, Simon

N1 - Acceptance from webpage AAM: 18m embargo

PY - 2019/8

Y1 - 2019/8

N2 - In this paper, we argue that social enterprise could represent a means of tackling rural challenges of providing sustainable economic development, addressing the withdrawal of public services and promoting community cohesion. The paper draws upon a review of existing academic as well as policy literature and develops a conceptual framework that helps to understand how to unlock the potential contribution of social enterprises to rural development. Drawing on an exploratory study conducted in two rural areas of Scotland we use interview data from social enterprise stakeholders to populate the conceptual framework and its rural (geographic), policy and social enterprise domains. Our study suggests that social enterprises can potentially enable an integrated approach to addressing local issues at the local level. They can create locally responsive services that fit the rural context. However, unlocking the potential of rural social enterprise may require moving beyond traditional policy silo approaches that treat economic development, community cohesion and public services as separate and disconnected since national policy-making frameworks have not always translated into practice at the rural level. Additionally, policy treatment of social enterprise needs to move beyond efforts to ‘scale up’ and achieve economies of scale. Collaborations between groups of social enterprises, and between social enterprises and public authorities can lead to economies of scope, particularly where strong trust-based relations within communities harness self-help and the co-production of services. With appropriate guidance and support, many rural challenges and needs could be transformed into opportunities for social enterprise development. In highlighting the opportunities and challenges faced by rural social enterprises, the paper suggests potential research gaps that, if filled, could contribute towards recognising and unlocking their full potential.

AB - In this paper, we argue that social enterprise could represent a means of tackling rural challenges of providing sustainable economic development, addressing the withdrawal of public services and promoting community cohesion. The paper draws upon a review of existing academic as well as policy literature and develops a conceptual framework that helps to understand how to unlock the potential contribution of social enterprises to rural development. Drawing on an exploratory study conducted in two rural areas of Scotland we use interview data from social enterprise stakeholders to populate the conceptual framework and its rural (geographic), policy and social enterprise domains. Our study suggests that social enterprises can potentially enable an integrated approach to addressing local issues at the local level. They can create locally responsive services that fit the rural context. However, unlocking the potential of rural social enterprise may require moving beyond traditional policy silo approaches that treat economic development, community cohesion and public services as separate and disconnected since national policy-making frameworks have not always translated into practice at the rural level. Additionally, policy treatment of social enterprise needs to move beyond efforts to ‘scale up’ and achieve economies of scale. Collaborations between groups of social enterprises, and between social enterprises and public authorities can lead to economies of scope, particularly where strong trust-based relations within communities harness self-help and the co-production of services. With appropriate guidance and support, many rural challenges and needs could be transformed into opportunities for social enterprise development. In highlighting the opportunities and challenges faced by rural social enterprises, the paper suggests potential research gaps that, if filled, could contribute towards recognising and unlocking their full potential.

KW - social enterprise

KW - welfare provision

KW - rural development

U2 - 10.1016/j.jrurstud.2017.12.021

DO - 10.1016/j.jrurstud.2017.12.021

M3 - Article

VL - 70

SP - 144

EP - 154

JO - Journal of Rural Studies

JF - Journal of Rural Studies

SN - 0743-0167

ER -