Between coercive and mimetic institutional isomorphism: Social enterprise and the universal Scandinavian welfare state

Bernard Enroljas, Linda Lundgaard Andersen, Malin Gawell, Jill Loga

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Social enterprise (SE) is often depicted as combining entrepreneurial and social dimensions, and as operating between the market and the state. This chapter discusses how the institutional framework shaped by the universalistic Scandinavian welfare state and the recent reforms of its mode of operation inspired by new public management (NPM) influence the opportunity structure for the development of SEs in Scandinavia. It demonstrates, in a highly institutionalised welfare provision system such as the Scandinavian welfare state, and in a context that is simultaneously characterised by the implementation of NPM reforms, SEs risk to be caught between the Charybdis of becoming integrated into the public welfare system and the Scylla of behaving like for-profit actors. In the 1990s, while Sweden and Finland experienced economic downturns which led to major welfare reforms, Norway’s financial situation stabilised.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSocial Enterprise in Western Europe : Theory, Models and Practice
EditorsJaques Defourny, Marthe Nyssen
Number of pages15
Publication date23 Feb 2021
ISBN (Print)9780367151188
ISBN (Electronic)9780429621772
Publication statusPublished - 23 Feb 2021
SeriesRoutledge Studies in Social Enterprise & Social Innovation

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