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The Social Economy and the Crisis
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The Social Economy and the Crisis


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  • Better learning across boundaries – e.g. bolsa familial or grameen bank (something we support via SIX)… or more targeted networks like SHAK
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    • 1. The Social Economy and the Crisis Lisbon 15th July 2009 Robin Murray, Julie Caulier-Grice & Geoff Mulgan
    • 2. From the micro economics of social venturing To the macro economics of social innovation and the global economic crisis
    • 3. 5 propositions Proposition 1 The present crisis is about a long wave transition from the 20th century paradigm of mass production, to what? to the 21st century paradigm of the distributed digital economy?
    • 4. The historical record: bubble prosperities, recessions & golden ages 1771 Britain 1829 Britain 1875 Britain / USA Germany 1908 USA 1971 USA 1890–95 Europe 1929–33 USA 1929–43 1848–50 2000/7–? 1793–97 TURNING POINTINSTALLATION PERIOD DEPLOYMENT PERIOD Telecom mania, Internet emerging markets and NASDAQ London funded global market infrastructure build-up (Argentina, Australia, USA) Railway mania Canal mania The roaring twenties Bubble Sustainable global knowledge-society ”golden age”? Post-war Golden age Belle Époque (Europe) “Progressive Era” (USA) The Victorian Boom Great British leap Golden Age Each Golden Age has been facilitated by enabling regulation and policies for shaping and widening markets
    • 5. The sequence of propagation has four phases and a break Financial Bubble Technological explosion Market saturation and social unrest Golden Age Next big-bang big-bang Degreeofdiffusionofthetechnologicalrevolution Time INSTALLATION PERIOD DEPLOYMENT PERIOD 20 – 30 years 20 – 30 years MATURITY SYNERGY FRENZY IRRUPTION TURNINGPOINT Crash Institutional recomposition
    • 6. Proposition 2 Strong social and technological tides which provide the basis for the expansion of the social economy
    • 7. i) Intractable Problems. Widespread recognition that the big issues not solvable with business as usual.
    • 8. But the social economy is particularly well suited to tackle these issues and is the source of many innovations in these areas.
    • 9. ii) Insistent voices, active lives. The rise of expressive culture - the post modern citizen actively searching for identity, meaning and self improvement , individually and collectively through social movements
    • 10. iii) Digital economy reconfiguring production around the user. The Lego principle. Households become designers, processors and assemblers. The house becomes an office/recording studio/learning lab/doctors’ surgery/power station. Rise of distributed systems and the support economy
    • 11. Platforms – from the linear to the multi-nodal
    • 12. Proposition 3 Social economy can become an innovative driver of economic transformation in the deployment period – social Schumpeter Can do so only if conditions transformed in each part of the social economy and their inter- relations
    • 13. The social economy
    • 14. a) State. Innovation episodic and centralised. Requires transformation of public finance and systems of accountability related to it b) Grant economy. Seed bed of innovation but fragile economically c) Market 55,000 social enterprises in UK. Requires new mediating institutions d) Households: conditions for participation
    • 15. Proposition 4 Crisis in macro economic policy. Battle against recessions being fought with weapons of the last war. 4 differentiated counter-cyclical policies required that focus on investment and creating conditions of next wave
    • 16. A) short and medium term investments that can be rapidly introduced
    • 17. B) Factor Four innovations for services faced by cuts (e.g. Elderpower in Maine) C) Innovative use of resources freed up by the market – people/land/buildings/ideas + encouraging initiatives insulated from the market (exchange systems/local food/volunteering) D) Regulatory changes creating conditions for SI
    • 18. Proposition 5 The coming years are a critical moment of danger and possibility. • Danger from crisis (debt overhangs and credit shortage/unemployment/cuts to grant programmes & social services • Possibilities: 1930s, Argentina, favellas
    • 19. Conclusion Just as 1930s crisis generated alternatives based on mass production model (Soviet, social democracy, fascism) so current crisis suggests alternatives based on distributed digital economy
    • 20. References: Eric Beinhocker, The Origin of Wealth, Random House, 2007 Bill Ivey, Arts Inc, University of California Press, 2008 Francois Jegou and Ezio Manzini, Collaborative Services: social innovation and design for sustainability, Poli Design 2008 Jim Maxmin and Soshana Zuboff, The Support Economy Carlota Perez, Technological Revolutions and Financial Capital, Edward Elgar 2002 Walter Stahel, The Performance Economy, Palgrave 2006 Robin Murray robinmurray(AT) Julie Caulier-Grice julie.caulier-grice(AT) Geoff Mulgan geoff.mulgan(AT)