On the 18th November over fifty delegates from social enterprises, civil society organisations and network bodies assembled in Birmingham at a major symposium organised by iSE. The aim was to provide an opportunity for the area’s key movers in social enterprise to focus for a morning on how the sector plans to navigate the profound changes which will transform the British state and society as a result of the government’s big society reforms and austerity measures.
Some have forecast that we are entering a new co-operative moment when mutual ownership and the social enterprise business model will have unparalleled prominence. But this will happen at precisely the same time as Britain embarks on the harshest austerity measures in generations.
Can the sector navigate these new conditions? Can we continue to deliver social benefit and operate ethically in what will be some of the most challenging market conditions we have ever faced? As one contributor said, “We’re here to help build a better society, not to dismantle the old one at any cost!”
I couldn’t agree more. You can download the report here.