The Handbook of Diverse Economies
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The Handbook of Diverse Economies

Edited by J. K. Gibson-Graham and Kelly Dombroski

Economic diversity abounds in a more-than-capitalist world, from worker-recuperated cooperatives and anti-mafia social enterprises to caring labour and the work of Earth Others, from fair trade and social procurement to community land trusts, free universities and Islamic finance. The Handbook of Diverse Economies presents research that inventories economic difference as a prelude to building ethical ways of living on our dangerously degraded planet. With contributing authors from twenty countries, it presents new thinking around subjectivity and methodology as strategies for making other worlds possible.
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Chapter 28: Social procurement: generating social good through market transactions, directly and indirectly

Joanne McNeill


This chapter explores the burgeoning practice of social procurement. To date, the uptake of social procurement has been driven largely through the public sector. Existing public sector budgets represent a significant resource pool, particularly in the prevailing context of shrinking discretional funding. At its best, social procurement is grounded in the types of ‘co’ processes (with, rather than to or for) that can contribute to improving social relations with and amongst a diverse range of actors. Through the cast of Fusion21, the chapter illustrates the potential that social procurement offers for generating and sustaining diverse economic livelihoods. Fusion21 is a social enterprise that uses a combination of direct and indirect social procurement strategies to leverage the resources of its public sector customers. The model delivers significant social value, including an autonomous funding source that is used to fully fund the delivery of a range of social programmes.

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