Lara Maestripieri


Barcelona, ES


Methodology of social research


Marginalised groups in labour markets

By Lara Maestripieri

Social innovation protects households, but does not necessarily empower women

Can social innovation challenge gender inequalities? In an article published for the Journal of Social Entrepreneurship – ‘Does social innovation reduce the economic marginalization of women? Insights from the case of Italian Solidarity Purchasing Groups’  – I tried to give a preliminary answer to the question.

The case of Solidarity Purchasing Groups is a well-known example of social innovation in the domain of agriculture and food. Despite being extensively studied from a political consumerism perspective, their effect on the beneficiaries of such groups – the family farmers and social cooperatives that sell products to them – has been less studied.

What, in particular, is the effect of social innovation activities on women? The article assesses whether there are specific advantages for women through participation in these alternative food networks. We found that suppliers of solidarity purchasing groups are less exposed to worsening economic conditions, but there is no specific difference in this benefit for men and women.

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