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Leslie Huckfield

New Labour approach – an overview While Ferlie et al. in their overview of New Public Management describe “quasi markets” and “Next Steps agencies” in the 1980s and early 1990s ( Ferlie et al. 1996 , chapter 1), New Labour policies for social enterprise and third sector delivery of public services had not yet arrived. However, as shown above, and later in this chapter, some

in How Blair killed the co-ops
Reclaiming social enterprise from its neoliberal turn

Social enterprise and third sector activity have mushroomed into a prolific area of academic research and discourse over the past 20 years, with many claiming their origins rooted in Blair, New Labour and Giddens’ ‘Third Way’. But many academic contributions lack experience of policy implementation and do not access the wealth of grey, legacy and public policy literature from earlier periods which supports different interpretations. Since most make few references to developments during the 1970s and 1980s, their narrow focus on New Labour from 1997 onwards not only neglects real antecedents, but miscasts the role of social enterprise.

Adopting a Critical Realist approach, the author had access to previously unused hardcopy documents from archives and collections and interviewed key players and key actors between 1998 and 2002, when major social enterprise and third sector policy changes occurred.

During a key political period from 1998 to 2002, Blair’s New Labour governments forced through a major conceptual shift for social enterprise, co-operative and third sector activity. Many structures, formed as community responses to massive deindustrialisation in the 1970s and 1980s, were repositioned to bid against the private sector to obtain contracts for delivery of low-cost public services.

Other UK academic contributions draw parallels with North American individual social entrepreneurs or rely excessively on interpretations from L’Emergence de l’Entreprise Sociale en Europe (EMES) Research Network, which prioritises a marketised version of “work integration social enterprises” (WISEs).

So the restoration of political and economic democracy has been denied to many local communities.

Paul Currion

. 4 One solution is that humanitarian organisations could enter the market by spinning off social enterprises by which they generate returns through equity or licensing agreements, similar to the approach now taken by universities ( Pattnaik and Pandey, 2014 ), although there are ethical and practical obstacles to this. Bibliography

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Corporations, Celebrities and the Construction of the Entrepreneurial Refugee Woman
Annika Bergman Rosamond and Catia Gregoratti

with a ‘trauma-informed approach’ ( RefuSHE, 2020b ), which views social enterprise as a ‘step in the journey toward independence and a new life after war and conflict’. Emancipatory and healing qualities thus are assigned to artisan work whereby refugee women ‘learn, grow and become leaders in their own right’ ( Rigou, 2018 ). This is coupled with an emphasis on the significance of education and offering a ‘safe shelter and a peaceful

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Full text access
Leslie Huckfield

Organisations labelled “social enterprises” are now redefined, reinvented and written up widely as though they were for low-cost delivery of public services. Social enterprise today is also frequently presented as an alternative to, as an amendment or even resistance to neoliberalism and capitalism. But in this book the author shows that, far from forming an alternative to neoliberalism, social

in How Blair killed the co-ops
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Leslie Huckfield

This book has sought to show that though third sector and social enterprise historical antecedents are causal, they have been lost. Labour and Co-operative Movement political support has been replaced by a depoliticised sector which functions increasingly as a player in a competitive market for the delivery of public services. This has limited the development potential for

in How Blair killed the co-ops
Leslie Huckfield

Background to this chapter To set this book in a wider context, in this chapter the author surveys alternative discourses. UK contributions on social enterprise and the third sector have been highly selective in their references to and reliance on other countries’ policy regimes. As an example, though North American discourses are often quoted, through their operation in a

in How Blair killed the co-ops
Leslie Huckfield

Social enterprise and the third sector during the 1970s and 1980s This chapter describes the emergence of indigenous community structures in the UK, many of which still exist as today’s social enterprises. Though Harold Wilson’s 1964 to 1970 Labour Government introduced urban policy measures for specific local communities in 1968, it took another 30 years for many

in How Blair killed the co-ops
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Leslie Huckfield

Introduction As shown throughout this book, the emergence of social enterprise as a service delivery platform in a public services marketplace has been endorsed and encouraged by many UK academic contributions. Many of these seem to have approached the third sector through their academic endeavours rather than through any practice and implementation experience. Using sources

in How Blair killed the co-ops
Abstract only
Hugh Atkinson

local civic engagement and political participation. This was to be welcomed. And yet the suspicion remained that this was part of an agenda to ‘hollow out’ the role of local government in favour of a rather disparate notion of community empowerment. This is not to deny the crucial importance of community activity. Indeed, I have noted in this book countless examples of community organisations, social enterprises and individuals making a real difference to the shaping of local services and a major contribution to local democracy. Such activity is essential to the

in Local democracy, civic engagement and community