CSEHub E-Bulletin - Vol 2 No 2 - July 07

Welcome to the bulletin of the Canadian Social Economy Hub (CSEHub) for the National Research Program on the Social Economy (funded by the Social Science and Humanities Research Council). Over the next five years, the CSEHub will be sending out bulletins on a regular basis to provide updates on the work of the CSEHub and its Nodes.

Telelearning Sessions Update Since September of 2006, CSEHub has been offering monthly telelearning sessions on topics related to the social economy, including food security, governmental policy, and regional initiatives. The objective of the sessions is to provide an informal yet structured opportunity for people from a wide variety of backgrounds to learn more about aspects of the social economy in Canada. The sessions are bilingual, with the each topic explored in both French and English in consecutive sessions. Through the sessions themselves, as well as online resources such as website links, documents, and PowerPoint presentations, CSEHub seeks to create a lasting interactive resource for social economy research. During the eight months since their inception, over 200 people have participated in the educational series. Speakers have included experts from within academia, such as Canadian Research Chair on the Social Economy Marie Bouchard, and also from practitioners who are daily engaged with social economy projects, such as Debbie Field from FoodShare, a Toronto-based food security organization. The lectures have been catalysts for engaging discussions, which have brought together participants in a national dialogue on social economy issues. After a break for the summer months, the telelearning series will resume in September with a French language session on the topic of social economy policies in Quebec and Manitoba. In the meantime, podcasts of past telelearning sessions are available to download from the CSEHub website, allowing those who missed participating in the events to hear the lecture and ensuing discussion. Upon request, these files are also available at broadcast-quality, for those who would like to incorporate them into radio programming. For more information, please see the CSEHub Telelearning webpage, or email secoord@uvic.ca

“Social Economy 101” on CD! The popularity of the telelearning series has led CSEHub to produce a compact disc of the first two sessions, as a bilingual introduction to the Social Economy. The English track (26:51) features lectures by Marie Bouchard, Canadian Research Chair on the Social Economy, and by Jack Quarter, director of the Social Economy Centre at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (University of Toronto). The French track (34:34) features lectures by Luc Thériault, professor of sociology at the University of New Brunswick, and Monique Beaudoin, Ontario Regional Coordinator of the Canadian Community Economic Development Network. The podcasts consist solely of the lecture portion of the sessions. The total length of the CD is 61 minutes and 25 seconds, and it is available from the Order CSEHub/CSERP Publications page on the CSEHub website for only $3 (shipping not included). The unedited contents of the CD are also available as mp3 files, which are free to download from the CSEHub Telelearning webpage.

Update on the First International CIRIEC Research Conference on the Social Economy Registration is currently open for the First International CIRIEC Research Conference on the Social Economy! Online registration, as well as fax and postal options, are available at the Registration section of the Conference website. Participants who submit their registration before July 31st 2007 will save $50 (CAN) on their fees. If you are planning on attending the conference, now is also the time to purchase your tickets for travel! Though the conference is several months away, the most affordable flights are currently available. In addition, charter flights for international travel require early reservation. For dedicated information on options for traveling to the conference, please contact our partner travel agency TravelCuts at the University of Victoria (univ_victoria@travelcuts.com) as well as the Traveling to Victoria page of the conference website. The conference website is updated regularly with new information, including listings of papers and posters to be presented, session topics, an outline of the conference schedule, and profiles of some of the plenary speakers. In addition, the site has descriptions of special conference events such as the Local Foods Feast gala dinner, pre-conference tours to local social economy organizations, and accommodation information. A student workshop is planned to take place at the University of Victoria on Monday, October 22. This workshop will be open to any student (graduate or undergraduate) interested in the social economy. The workshop will be based around several themed presentations designed to enhance students’ research skills and expose them to methodologies for conducting Social Economy-based research. It will also facilitate information sharing, networking and community building among the student participants through the use of breakout sessions and informal round-table dialogue and discussion. For more information check the conference website


Laying a Foundation for Mutuals in Canada – an Occasional Paper CSEHub is proud to present the first in our series of Occasional Papers! We have begun to produce a series of Occasional Papers on the subject of the social economy in Canada, in order to provide both a resource for those seeking to learn about such topics and an opportunity for researchers to have their work published. In this inaugural publication of our Occasional Papers series, Ron Dueck explores the history and current status of mutuals in the Canadian context. “Laying a Foundation for Mutuals in Canada” examines the history of mutuals as a distinct form of economic organization, analyzes the legal framework available for the development of mutuals within the Canadian social economy, addresses the economic and social strengths and weaknesses of the mutual form of organization, and evaluates the suitability of the mutual model for various types of social enterprise. The paper is 60 pages long and bound with a Cerlox binding. To order, please see the Order CSEHub/CSERP Publications page of the website. It is also available as a free PDF download, from the new Occasional Papers page on the CSEHub website.

Akira Kurimoto: A Lecture on the Social Economy in Japan In cooperation with the Centre for Asia-Pacific Initiatives, the Canadian Social Economy Hub was pleased to host a lunch-time lecture by Akira Kurimoto, a renowned and very active member of the social economy movement in Japan. Mr. Kurimoto joined us on Monday, June 4, and presented an hour-long talk on the breadth and depth of the role played by consumer, marketing, insurance, and distribution cooperatives in the making of Japanese society. He summarized the changes that have occurred due to trade liberalization, and deregulation, and explained how cooperatives have provided the dominant infrastructure of rural life in Japan. As the author of several books on such topics, including the recent “Co-operative Principles in the 21st century: Reflecting on 10 Years Practices” (2006), Mr. Kurimoto is an expert in the field of social economy research, and we are appreciative of the time he took to share his knowledge with us! For those who missed the event, Mr. Kurimoto's PowerPoint presentation as well as podcasts of his lecture are available on the CSEHub website.

Report from the 2007 Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences in Saskatchewan For one week every year, Canadian social scientists meet within their respective organizations as part of the 2007 Congress of Humanities and Social Sciences. This year the congress was held from the 28th of May to the 1st of June. As part of this event, three organizations came together for the first time in a joint conference. The International Co-operative Alliance Committee on Co-operative Research (ICA), the Canadian Association for Studies in Co-operation (CASC), and the Association for Cooperative Educators (ACE) together hosted a unified conference in Saskatoon, combining the approaches and audiences of the respective organizations' co-operative and social economy researchers, educators, and practitioners came from across Canada and around the globe to participate in the lectures, presentations, and workshops of the Congress. The theme of the Social Science and Humanities Congress was “Bridging Communities: Making Public Knowledge, Making Knowledge Public”. One of the days of the Congress was devoted to the Social Economy and the featured a number of special events. Nancy Neamtan, President of the Chantier de l’économie sociale and a partner in the Canadian Social Economy Research Partnerships, gave a keynote address called “The Social Economy: Finding a way between the market and the state”. The theme day allowed a number of persons not registered in the co-operative conference to participate in the discussions on the social economy. There were presentation by many researchers and practitioners associated with the Canadian Social Economy Hub and the Canadian Social Economy Research Partnerships, including an introduction to the research project as a whole, presented by Annie McKitrick and researchers from each node. Those involved with the Research Partnerships also made presentations in other academic associations. Rupert Downing and Lou Hammond-Ketilson participated in a SSHRC panel on Community-University research partnerships. The papers and power points presented during the conference will be available at the 2007 Congress Website. In addition, Janel Smith and Robin Puga presented the Social Economy Student Network, which you could learn more about further on in the newsletter. Finally, Debbie, Annie and Janel together presented on the subject of Fair Trade and the social economy at the “Fair Trade: Bridging Communities, Building Understanding” symposium. The presentations by the Canadian Social Economy Research Partnerships staff and researchers will soon be available under the new CSEHub Presentations and Lectures page of the website!

Social Economy Student Network CSEHub is in the process of establishing an online student forum for academic dialogue, information dispersal and education, called the Social Economy Student Network (SESN). When completed, the Network will bring together students and researchers to create synergy and form intellectually-stimulating and diverse peer networks. Members will be able to acquire and share research and related information, including academic papers and research projects, a SE bibliography, upcoming conferences and calls for papers, online seminars and lectures on the SE, resources on conducting SE-based research, existing university-level courses and programs with a particular SE focus, employment opportunities or practicums and community-based initiatives. Janel Smith and Robin Puga, both of CSEHub, presented the SESN in Saskatoon at the 2007 Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, where they were met with a great deal of enthusiasm from graduate students. In particular, conference participants appreciated the opportunity of a venue for sharing both their research and their practices for community-based research methodologies. From the presentation and resulting discussion, Janel and Robin identified a number of graduate students, including those from francophone universities, to aid in the necessary refine the website and they are looking forward to launching it to a wider audience in within the coming months.

Immigrants, Refugees, and the Social Economy CCEDNet has begun to research the extent of the social economy impact on immigrants and immigrant-serving organizations. A number of reports are available on their website. Annie McKitrick, Nicole Chaland and Gulalai Habib presented a workshop at the recently-held conference organized by the British Columbia provincial government department of immigrant settlement. This conference provided an opportunity for immigrant settlement practitioners to come together to work at exploring how to best serves the immigrants who come to BC. The workshop on the Social Economy generated a great deal of interest, and further discussions and learning opportunities are being planned. The presentations are available on the CSEHub Presentations and Lectures page of the CSEHub website.

Contact the Canadian Social Economy Hub Project Officer: Annie McKitrick secoord@uvic.ca This Bulletin will appear on a regular basis. To subscribe, send an e-mail to info@socialeconomyhub.ca

E-Bulletin Editorial Committee Lindsay Kearns Annie McKitrick Janel Smith