1st Edition

Social Innovation, Social Enterprises and the Cultural Economy Cultural and Artistic Social Enterprises in Practice

By Rocío Nogales Muriel Copyright 2023
    272 Pages 23 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Faced with a depleted planet and a series of connected crises, socially minded agents and entities within the world of culture and the arts are reacting from within. With insights from sociology, economics, and cultural management and policy, this book aims to chronicle the journey of SMart – a cultural and artistic social enterprise now present in eight European countries – in order to illustrate such organisation’s efforts to achieve its potential for social innovation and transformation. Tackling the endemic precariousness and intermittency of work through innovative arrangements for cultural workers and artists has been central to these efforts. In many cases, however, this activism not only had a direct impact at the level of individual and collective labour, but also has transformed the ways culture is ‘governed’.

    Readers of this book will better understand the connection between social innovation and culture and the arts; gain awareness of the trends and transformations within the field of culture and cultural work and their connection with institutional arrangements; and critically engage with the processes, challenges and benefits of scaling up and diffusing social innovation.

    The debates presented will be of relevance to scholars and students across disciplines, policy makers at both EU and national levels, practitioners and social activists.

    1. Culture at the Crossroads of the XXI Century Transitions 2. Social Enterprise as Vehicle for Social Innovation in Culture 3. Culture as a Field for Social Innovation and Social Enterprise 4. Diffusing Social Innovation 5. The Case of SMart: A Unique European Social Enterprise in the Field of Culture 6. Focus on Three Country Cases: Austria, Spain and Hungary 7. SMart Arrives to Austria, Spain and Hungary 8. Culture and the Arts as Companions in the Unpostponable Transitions


    Rocío Nogales Muriel is Director of the EMES International Research Network (Belgium/Spain) and Adjunct Professor at the University of Zaragoza (Spain).

    "From her vantagepoint at the intersection of culture, social innovation and social economy Rocío Nogales Muriel is uniquely positioned to observe the crucial contribution of culture to social transformation. She analyses how culture in its diversity is a leverage for emancipation, empowerment, and democracy. Furthermore, the book is an excellent contribution to understand how crisis of the past and present are triggers of collective learning and social innovation, and how artists and creators are contributing to mitigate the contemporary eco-social crises." Lars Hulgård, Roskilde University, Denmark

    "Rocío Muriel Nogales' book provides us with the most up-to-date synthesis on the relations between cultural emancipation, social innovation and social economy. Human self-emancipation reaches its fullness only when culture grows as a hybrid of democracy, inclusivity, diversity and shared creativity. Socially innovative initiatives, and certainly social enterprises, are the natural agents of such hybridization. They epitomize mutual aid and its power to override the ethics of individualism. The book is a must-read for any citizen concerned about the role of culture in keeping us human." Frank Moulaert, Ku Leuven, Belgium

    "Through the lens of the remarkable SMart cooperative, Rocío Nogales Muriel’s rigorous analysis
    demonstrates the capacity of social enterprise and the social and solidarity economy to transform
    the lives of freelance cultural workers and the small organizations and companies that dominate
    the sector. This inspiring and scholarly book is a ‘must read” by researchers, policy makers and
    by all engaged in culture and in the arts." Marguerite Mendell, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada

    "Bringing the arts and culture back in” through social entrepreneurship constitutes the leitmotiv
    of this volume! Indeed, after years of neo-liberal thinking, the volume indicates a turning point
    for the policy field. Finally, the arts and culture are again appreciated as a source of inspiration
    and innovation as well as an avenue for offering possibilities for both societal integration and
    individual creativity. This is made possible thanks to the growing attractiveness and emergence
    of social enterprises and social entrepreneurship." Annette Zimmer, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Germany