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Sustainable Development Performance Indicators for Social and Solidarity Economy - State of the Art

EasyChair Preprint no. 1115

43 pagesDate: June 8, 2019


There has been a sustained interest in the last decade for the measurement of the impact and performance of social and solidarity economy (SSE) organizations. This interest is fueled, among other things, by the rapid growth of the importance given to social enterprise, social entrepreneurship and impact investing in recent years. This paper, commissioned by the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) as part of its “Sustainable Development Performance Indicators” project, attempts to review the methodologies, metrics and indicators implemented in the SSE today. Based on a review of the existing literature, it presents a selection of assessment tools and indicators that have been applied to SSE and blended value enterprises since the 1990s. Some of the key initiatives considered in this work include the notion of theory of change, the social accounting, reporting and auditing streams, various experiences developed by the cooperative sector, the concept of “utilité sociale” elaborated in France, the Sustainable Livelihoods framework, the Social Return on Investment (SROI) method, the IRIS bank of indicators, the impact assessment system developed by B Lab and the principles advocated by the Impact Management Project. Specific attention is given to the origins and diffusion of these initiatives, the role indicators may play in characterizing SSE’s contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and key issues related to the field.

Keyphrases: evaluation, indicators, social and solidarity economy, social enterprise, social impact measurement, social return on investment, Sustainable Development Goals, sustainable development performance indicator, theory of change, utilité sociale

BibTeX entry
BibTeX does not have the right entry for preprints. This is a hack for producing the correct reference:
  author = {Gabriel Salathé-Beaulieu and Marie J. Bouchard and Marguerite Mendell},
  title = {Sustainable Development Performance Indicators for Social and Solidarity Economy - State of the Art},
  howpublished = {EasyChair Preprint no. 1115},

  year = {EasyChair, 2019}}
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