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Article
Publication date: 22 October 2020

Tom Montgomery and Simone Baglioni

This article seeks to answer the question: how should we conceptualise the “gig economy”? In doing so the authors shall explore if gig economy work should be understood as a novel…

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Abstract

Purpose

This article seeks to answer the question: how should we conceptualise the “gig economy”? In doing so the authors shall explore if gig economy work should be understood as a novel concept that stands alone, a concept that is a subtype, or whether it may in fact be conceptually redundant.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors conduct a thematic analysis of interview data drawn from 27 interviews with policymakers, trade union officials, key figures within labour organisations and gig economy workers.

Findings

The authors reveal how, from the perspective of key stakeholders, the concept of the gig economy exhibits a lack of “differentiation” from the long-established concept of precarious work of which it is best understood as a subtype.

Research limitations/implications

The empirical findings from the authors’ study should be regarded as limited in terms of being situated in the specific employment context of the UK. Nevertheless, the implications of the study have a broader reach. The authors seek to provoke debate and discussion among scholars across disciplines and contexts working in the areas of precarious work and the gig economy. The authors’ analysis will be of interest to scholars who are concerned with how they conceptualise “new” forms of work.

Originality/value

The analysis offers a novel intervention by revealing how key stakeholders perceive the gig economy through a prism of continuity rather than change and connect it with broader processes of precarity.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 41 no. 9/10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 31 August 2022

Tom Montgomery, Francesca Calo and Simone Baglioni

In this article focused upon the UK context, the authors sought to better understand how political elites shaped public debate to reinforce rather than challenge the hostile…

Abstract

Purpose

In this article focused upon the UK context, the authors sought to better understand how political elites shaped public debate to reinforce rather than challenge the hostile policy environment for those seeking asylum.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors undertook a political claims analysis (Koopmans and Statham, 1999) focussing on a venue that has been pivotal in shaping the discourse around asylum issues in the UK, namely the print media. This work adopts a theoretical frame informed by the work of Stuart Hall to uncover the extent to which debates on asylum during the key period of the refugee emergency in Europe were shaped by political elites.

Findings

The study’s findings reveal the extent to which political elites acted as “primary definers” of the “crisis” and utilised that position to cast those arriving in Europe as a threat to be managed.

Originality/value

This research offers a contemporary worked example of political claims analysis in a topical subject area that colleagues across disciplines and contexts may find informative for their own research agendas.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 43 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 7 November 2016

Richard Hazenberg, Meanu Bajwa-Patel, Micaela Mazzei, Michael James Roy and Simone Baglioni

This paper draws upon prior research that built a theoretical framework for the emergence of social enterprise ecosystems based upon the biological evolutionary theory. This paper…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper draws upon prior research that built a theoretical framework for the emergence of social enterprise ecosystems based upon the biological evolutionary theory. This paper aims to extend this previous research by practically applying the said theory to the development of stakeholder and institutional networks across Europe.

Design/methodology/approach

Data from in-depth semi-structured interviews and focus groups were analysed using Constant Comparison Method. Data were generated from discussions with 258 key stakeholders in ten countries across Europe, exploring the historical, political, social, legal and economic factors that influence the patterns of a social enterprise seen in each country.

Findings

The results identify the emergence of four social enterprise ecosystem types (Statist-macro, Statist-micro, Private-macro and Private-micro). These are used to explain the differences found in each of the ten country’s social enterprise ecosystems. The results are discussed in relation to the evolutionary theory in social entrepreneurship and how “genetic” and “epigenetic” factors lead to the divergence of social enterprise ecosystems, and the impact that this has on the stakeholders and institutions that are present within them.

Originality/value

A typology of ecosystems is presented, which can be used by policymakers across Europe to understand how best to support their local social economies.

Details

Social Enterprise Journal, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-8614

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 February 2021

Francesca Caló, Michael James Roy, Cam Donaldson, Simon Teasdale and Simone Baglioni

As the provision of public services in many advanced welfare states has increasingly come to be marked by competition, social enterprises have actively been encouraged by…

Abstract

Purpose

As the provision of public services in many advanced welfare states has increasingly come to be marked by competition, social enterprises have actively been encouraged by governments to become involved in the delivery of public services. While the evaluation of complex public health interventions has arguably become increasingly more sophisticated, this has not been the case where social enterprise is concerned: evaluation of the actual impacts of social enterprises remains significantly underdeveloped by comparison. This study aims to support the establishment of a robust evidence base for the use of social enterprise as a policy instrument.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper assesses the potential of three methodological approaches common in the evaluation of complex public health interventions and applies them to the complex realm of community-led social enterprise.

Findings

Only through the involvement of different comparator groups, based on the research questions addressed, would it be possible to disentangle the embedded characteristics of organisations such as social enterprises. Each of the methods adopted in this research is time-consuming and resource-intensive and requires the researcher to possess advanced skills. Public officials should recognise the complexity and resource-intensive nature of such evaluation and resource it accordingly. If the aim of policymakers is to understand the added value of social enterprise organisations, an integrative research approach combining different research methods and design should be implemented to improve generalisability.

Originality/value

This study applies a range of favoured approaches to evaluate “complex” public health interventions include systematic reviews, realist evaluation and quasi-experimental investigation. However, such evaluation approaches have rarely been applied before in the context of social enterprise.

Details

Social Enterprise Journal, vol. 17 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-8614

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 6 July 2015

Simone Baglioni

This chapter examines the relations between local civil society organizations and the European Union as a way to assess the functioning of multi-level governance in the field of…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter examines the relations between local civil society organizations and the European Union as a way to assess the functioning of multi-level governance in the field of employment policy.

Methodology/approach

The chapter draws on primary organizational survey data collected in the EU FP7 funded project entitled ‘Youth, Unemployment and Exclusion in Europe’ (Younex, grant agreement n.216111) and for the approach it places itself in the tradition of critical civil society–EU relations research.

Findings

For more than two decades, civil society has occupied a prominent position in the rhetoric of European Union multi-level governance. The EU rhetoric conceives of the inclusion of civil society in policy making as a necessary step towards linking the various levels of government (from local to European) as well as the different societal and institutional actors implied by a multilevel governance approach. Moreover, the rhetoric of civil society also serves the goal of tackling the multi-faceted issues of a democratic ‘deficitaire’ EU. This chapter, however, offers a critical appraisal of such a rhetoric by confirming what other studies had unveiled: access to European institutions requires substantial human (‘capital in knowledge’) and economic resources and as such the link existing between the European Union and local civil society organizations is a very thin one, one which is limited to a very few, rich in resources, organizations. The rhetoric of civil society as the connector of levels and types of actors in the multi-level governance approach promoted by the EU should thus be mitigated. The European policy process should be conceived of more pragmatically as an arena where European institutions and member states still act as gate keepers that select and decide which societal interest and voice should have a place within the European agenda. What consequences this has for the overall democratic quality of the European policy process is an issue which should concern us all.

Research implications

The chapter allows scrutinizing horizontal and vertical dimensions of multi-level governance while expanding knowledge on civil society at both local and European level. Although multi-level governance has become a popular concept it still lacks a consistent empirical assessment, which is something the data discussed here do. Thus, the chapter has implications for research on civil society and citizens’ engagement in public affairs but it is also relevant for scholars working on EU policy-making issues.

Practical implications

Civil society organizations could contribute improving the quality of policies at European level as well as strengthening EU legitimacy to rule. The findings contribute explaining which factors limit civil society access to EU institutions and how these could be overcome.

Societal implications

The chapter corroborates critical views of the EU–civil society relations, the findings suggest that the EU should work with further commitment to offer local civil society organizations and citizens groups real opportunities for their voices and expertise to be heard and considered.

Originality/value

The chapter adopts a critical view of EU–civil society relations challenging the EU multi-level governance rhetoric and discusses the features obstructing civil society actors’ engagement with policy making at the EU level.

Details

Multi-Level Governance: The Missing Linkages
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-874-8

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 6 July 2015

Edoardo Ongaro

The explanatory power of Multi-Level Governance (MLG) has been and is being questioned. Two main criticisms have been raised: first, that MLG is ultimately descriptive, not…

Abstract

Purpose

The explanatory power of Multi-Level Governance (MLG) has been and is being questioned. Two main criticisms have been raised: first, that MLG is ultimately descriptive, not explanatory; second, that MLG is a case of concept stretching, that it is ultimately an umbrella notion rather than a theory. This chapter outlines what ripostes may be provided to such critiques and argues that the progress of the study of MLG and its usage in political science and public policy and management may lie to an important extent in fostering the dialogue with other streams of research (thus filling the gap of some ‘missing linkages’ in the extant MLG literature), like network governance; policy learning; the analysis of policy tools and the tools of government in complex systems; models in strategic management like stakeholder analysis and others.

Methodology/approach

This volume is a collective contribution by authors from different disciplinary backgrounds who all address, from different angles and by using a variety of research methods, the key question of how to bring into the MLG research agenda a range of disciplines and applied fields of inquiry that have so far only limitedly been used in the MLG stream of research and literature more systematically.

Findings

It arises from the volume that theoretical frames like network governance; policy learning; policy tools analysis; stakeholder analysis and others have important potential to further the MLG research agenda. A number of contributions address the transformation of MLG in the European Union (EU), the polity where MLG arrangements where first detected and labelled as such (Marks, 1993). Others apply MLG frames to other institutional settings, including non-democratic regimes.

Research implications

This volume is a collective attempt to suggest ‘cross-fertilisations’ from other disciplines or applied fields that may lead to unleash more of the potential and promises of the MLG agenda. It is hoped that this work lays some of the foundations for building bridges between the MLG literature and disciplines and theoretical frames that may be effectively brought into the MLG research agenda.

Practical/social implications

MLG has long gone beyond the academic debate, to become an analytical lens employed by EU and other institutions across the globe. MLG informs the practice of policy-making. By addressing some key gaps in the extant literature and furnishing perspectives to link MLG to disciplines that may provide theories and models to further its analytical potential, this volume aims at contributing to improving the practice of MLG.

Originality/value

The volume is – to our knowledge – the first systematic attempt to bring into the MLG literature a whole range of theories and models that may provide ways forward to the understanding and usage of MLG.

Details

Multi-Level Governance: The Missing Linkages
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-874-8

Keywords

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 6 July 2015

Abstract

Details

Multi-Level Governance: The Missing Linkages
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-874-8

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 6 July 2015

Abstract

Details

Multi-Level Governance: The Missing Linkages
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-874-8

Book part
Publication date: 6 July 2015

Abstract

Details

Multi-Level Governance: The Missing Linkages
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-874-8

Content available
Article
Publication date: 7 November 2016

Bob Doherty

119

Abstract

Details

Social Enterprise Journal, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-8614

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