Social economy and Roma inclusion: state of play and prospects for development

Social economy and Roma inclusion: state of play and prospects for development

Period of implementation: January 2015 – December 2016

Although there have been an increasing number of initiatives supporting social economy and Roma inclusion in Romania, a number of gaps still persist and affect the overall framework of fighting against poverty and  social exclusion, mainly the divergent policies and initiatives that  failed to provide a comprehensive view in this field.

Tackling this problem requires a wide ranging project that would essentially create an“umbrella” platform that would link the social economy enterprises dedicated to or including Roma beneficiaries with an entire array of financers that would provide the instruments to maximize  their impact. At this point, there is no user friendly up-to-date database that would enable these funds to be spent in a more  synergy-conducive manner, nor providing bridges between the enterprises  and the financers.

Hence, the project will not only “map” the social enterprises, but also assess their sustainability and prospects to produce welfare. Putting  together all the secondary data available on Roma social economy  projects and enterprises set up since 2007 and then conducting field research on a relevant sample to determine their sustainability and prospects for creating welfare for their communities will provide a first clear  look on what has been done on Roma economic empowerment in Romania, thus  providing the opportunity to replicate best practice and transfer of  knowledge while improving the non satisfactory outcomes.

The project will be providing evidence-based solutions to all actors (state or non-state) interested in supporting the economic empowerment of Roma communities in Romania, derived from the accumulated experience and lessons learned in Romania post-EU accession and improve the policy framework shaping the development of Roma entrepreneurs and Roma social economy sector in Romania.

Donor: Open Society Institute