IME/GSEVEE – Social Economy: Employment growth in Greece by 264.5% in a seven-year period [Ερευνα] – Financial Postman
Employment in its field social solidarity economy (KAO) in Greece, over time, has shown an upward trend with a stabilization trend in recent years, as shown by the research of IME GSEVEE “Employment in the field of the social economy: trends and perspectives”.
As the study states, although the overall contribution of CAO to employment remains very limited compared to the rest of the economy, the finding of twice the number of employees per CAO operator than the number of employees in the conventional economy tends to be a characteristic feature of it. Consequently, the CAO sector seems to have the potential to contribute to employment in the long run, to a greater extent than a conventional business.
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The IME GSEVEE study investigates the solutions that the social and solidarity economy sector can provide to the critical employment issues and in particular whether and to what extent it can contribute, among others, below to: a) the creation and maintenance of jobs, as well as the organization of employment, b) the quality of work, c) the social integration of people belonging to vulnerable groups through employment.
Diversity in forms of employment
KAO contributes to employment in a direct way, creating jobs within its agencies. At the same time, it also contributes in an indirect way, providing services that improve the conditions for the exercise of professional-business activity by members or third parties, while simultaneously increasing the demand for certain services/goods.
The form of employment within the bodies of the CAO shows strong diversity. In addition to the paid employment of members and/or third parties, often KAO businesses also rely on the unpaid employment of members/and/or third parties. Which or which forms of employment one encounters in a CAO organization depends on many factors, such as the type, size, sector of activity of the CAO organization, but also the applicable institutional framework and economic conditions. Despite the diversity with which employment appears within the CAO, the ideal course of development and maturation of a venture tends towards labor self-determination, which is not the ultimate goal of all CAO bodies, it is an ideal type due to the fact that it goes beyond the employer-employee distinction, with the coincidence of these two properties in one person, that of the member.
Little growth in Greece
In the case of Greece, the CAO was not particularly developed, compared to other European countries, both in terms of the dynamics of its operators and their contribution to employment, which is recorded as the lowest in the EU. Although the CAO institutionally recognized with Law 4019/2011 and then with Law 4430/2016, in the Greek legal landscape, the institutionally recognized CAO is only a partial section of the wider CAO, which includes a multitude of ventures and organizations, such as cooperatives, mutual insurance bodies , associations, unions and foundations.
As a result, most of the CAO and, accordingly, its contribution to employment remains invisible to the Greek legislature and uncharted for policy makers.
Employment in CAO agencies is on the rise. In 2018, it increased by 264.5% compared to 2011. However, in relation to the entire economy, for 2018 the CAO had a particularly small presence in terms of the number of entities (0.93% of the total number of entities in the economy), from in terms of turnover (1.18% of the entire economy) and an equally small contribution to employment (2.04% of the total number of employed). However, the contribution of CAO per agency was greater than the conventional economy. More specifically, from 2013 to 2018, the number of employees per organization was twice or more in CAO organizations (≥6 employees per organization) compared to the rest of the economy (≤3 employees per organization). The above result is influenced by the fact that the vast majority of legal forms are sole proprietorships, where usually only their owner is employed. However, sole proprietorships cannot be excluded from the above analysis, as they cannot employ more people than the owner, but either do not seek (because they are for-profit and therefore any profit is attributed to the owner) or cannot employs a larger number of people (for example due to economic hardship). This highlights the increased contribution of CAO to employment per CAO operator, relative to a conventional enterprise (individual or collective).
Based on the above, in Greece employment in the CAO over time has shown an upward trend with a stabilization trend in recent years. Although the overall contribution of CAO to employment remains very limited compared to the rest of the economy, the finding of twice the number of employees per CAO body than the number of employees in the conventional economy tends to be a characteristic of it. Consequently, the CAO sector seems to have the potential to contribute to employment in the long run, to a greater extent than a conventional business. However, with limited or no support, KAO will remain a regional sector of the economy, without exploiting its potential.
At the macro-level, the strengthening of employment in the CAO can be achieved by improving the existing institutional framework, harmonizing it with other legislation and generally promoting public policies for the CAO adapted to the needs and characteristics of the ventures. With reference to the resilience of the KAO in crisis conditions, it became clear that some agencies stand out for their adaptability, while also protecting employment. On the other hand, the negative impact of the crises on other KAO agencies was highlighted.
This observation demonstrates that CAO institutions, depending on their category, size, sector – among other factors – are more or less affected by crises and therefore the generalization that every CAO institution is resistant to every crisis is not accurate . , as it does not correspond to the actual data. During the empirical research, the various needs of the field 140 to develop and develop employment were highlighted, starting from the even legislative environment that remains as a request to the creation of appropriate financial tools. These requirements, although they have been pointed out by previous studies (such as Geormas et al., 2019), still remain unanswered, now acquiring characteristics of years of pathogenesis.
See the full survey HERE