Acquaintance or partner? Social economy organisations, institutional logics and regional development in Australia

Barth, Sharine, Barraket, Jo, Luke, Belinda G., & McLaughlin, Juliana M. (2015) Acquaintance or partner? Social economy organisations, institutional logics and regional development in Australia. Entrepreneurship & Regional Development, 27(3-4), pp. 219-254.

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The social economy as a regional development actor is gaining greater attention given its purported ability to address social and environmental problems. This growth in interest is occurring within a global environment that is calling for a more holistic understanding of development compared to traditionally economic-centric conceptions. While regional development policies and practices have long considered for-profit businesses as agents for regional growth, there is a relatively limited understanding of the role of the social economy as a development actor. The institutional environment is a large determinant of all kinds of entrepreneurial activity, and therefore understanding the relationships between the social economy and broader regional development processes is warranted.

This paper moves beyond suggestions of an economic-centric focus of regional development by utilising institutional logics as a theoretical framework for understanding the role of social enterprise in regional development. A multiple case study of ten social enterprises in two regional locations in Australia suggests that social enterprise can represent competing logics to economic-centric institutional values and systems. The paper argues that dominant institutional logics can constrain or promote the inter-play between the social and the economic aspects of development, in the context of social enterprise.

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ID Code: 87849
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: social enterprises, social economy, institutional logics, regional development, Australia
DOI: 10.1080/08985626.2015.1030458
ISSN: 0898-5626
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Chancellery
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2015 Taylor & Francis
Copyright Statement: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Entrepreneurship & Regional Development: An International Journal on 11 Jun 2015, available online:
Deposited On: 29 Sep 2015 23:00
Last Modified: 04 Oct 2015 05:47

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