References of "Huybrechts, Benjamin"
     in
Bookmark and Share    
Peer Reviewed
See detailCaught on the Boundary: The Micro-Processes of Social Movement-Corporate Relationships
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg; Nicholls, Alex

Conference (2010, September 13)

Detailed reference viewed: 42 (6 ULg)
Full Text
Peer Reviewed
See detailIntroduction: Fair Trade in Different National Contexts
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg; Reed, Darryl

in Journal of Business Ethics (2010), 92(2), 147-150

Introduction to the special issue in the Journal of Business Ethics

Detailed reference viewed: 382 (2 ULg)
Full Text
Peer Reviewed
See detailFair Trade Organizations in Belgium: Unity in Diversity?
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

in Journal of Business Ethics (2010), 92(2), 217-240

This article analyzes the dual process occurring in the field of Fair Trade organizations (FTOs) in Belgium. On the one hand, there has been a gradual diversification of the organizational landscape over ... [more ▼]

This article analyzes the dual process occurring in the field of Fair Trade organizations (FTOs) in Belgium. On the one hand, there has been a gradual diversification of the organizational landscape over time from pioneering volunteer-based non-profit organizations to a broader array including cooperatives, group structures, businesses and individual entrepreneurs exclusively devoted to FT. On the other hand, a process of networking is currently taking place among the various types of FTOs in the context of the creation of a Belgian Fair Trade Federation (BFTF). Drawing on neo-institutional theory, including institutional entrepreneurship, this article examines how and why these two processes have taken place. A qualitative field study in the Belgian FT sector, including interviews with 15 FTOs, offers rich empirical material which illustrates the diverse patterns of these organizations. Based on the observed combinations of different variables among Belgian FTOs, a taxonomy reflecting diverse means of conceiving and organizing FT activity is suggested. The different categories of FTOs and the evolution of these categories over time seem linked to the broader institutional evolutions of FT at the international as well as at the Belgian level. Finally, several factors are reviewed to explain why the diversity among Belgian FTOs has not been an obstacle to their collaboration. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 287 (18 ULg)
See detailExplaining Organizational Diversity in Fair Trade Social Enterprises
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

Conference (2010, March 13)

Detailed reference viewed: 27 (1 ULg)
Full Text
See detailExplaining Organisational Diversity in Fair Trade Social Enterprises
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

Doctoral thesis (2010)

This research aims to explain and understand the organisational diversity observed in the field of Fair Trade Social Enterprises or Fair Trade Organisations (FTOs). The transversal hypothesis is that such ... [more ▼]

This research aims to explain and understand the organisational diversity observed in the field of Fair Trade Social Enterprises or Fair Trade Organisations (FTOs). The transversal hypothesis is that such a diversity in organisational forms may be linked to the multidimensional (economic, social and/or political) nature of Fair Trade. First, since there are virtually no typologies focused on FTOs, it is necessary to look at how organisational diversity in FT can be categorised. A typology with five categories of organisational forms is suggested. Secondly, this work explores the reasons behind organisational diversity, using both an external, explanatory perspective, and an internal, interactionist perspective. A third key issue is to explore whether FTOs experience tensions between the different dimensions of FT, and how these tensions are managed in the different types of FTOs. These issues are examined under the light of different theoretical approaches linked to “new institutionalism” (economic, sociological and entrepreneurial) and resource dependence theory. The empirical material is provided by interviews with the leaders of 57 FTOs in four European regions: Belgium, France (Rhône-Alpes), the United Kingdom (England) and Italy (Rome). Eight of these FTOs, reflecting the different categories of organisational forms, are analysed more in depth. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 267 (18 ULg)
Full Text
See detailExploring the Diversity of Fair Trade Social Enterprises
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg; Defourny, Jacques ULg

E-print/Working paper (2010)

Fair trade (FT) organisations have been quite early taken as examples of social enterprises (SE) and have contributed to the shaping of the SE concept. The goal of this article is to examine more deeply ... [more ▼]

Fair trade (FT) organisations have been quite early taken as examples of social enterprises (SE) and have contributed to the shaping of the SE concept. The goal of this article is to examine more deeply, both at a conceptual and at an empirical level, to what extent FT organisations can be considered as social enterprises. First, we introduce different theoretical frameworks of SE and examine FT in the context of each of these frameworks. In a second step, we use an empirical study on fair trade social enterprises (FTSEs) across four European countries to illustrate and deepen the links between FT and SE, focusing on the goals and the governance structures of FTSEs. It appears that all FTSEs combine in some way economic, social and sometimes also political goals. FTSEs are thus in line with the "hybrid-goal" nature of SEs. FTSEs' governance is also quite specific and often innovative in terms of organisational architecture and stakeholders' involvement. Some FTSEs are closer to the European – participatory – approach of social enterprise, while others are closer to US – individual – approaches. Finally, the governance structures of FTSEs seem to reflect quite well their goal mix. This article provides a more solid basis for the often implicit link between FT and SE. Future researches could use our work to explore specific topics of the SE literature (e.g. stakeholders' involvement) in the context of FT. The FT example could also be used to examine further the shifting boundaries of the SE reality. The originality of this article is to apply the SE concept to a specific field and to show how, within this field, there is at the same time (1) a diversity of organisations, reflecting the diversity of SE approaches and (2) a range of specific features (especially in terms of goal mix and governance) distinguishing SEs from other types of organisations operating in the same field. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 47 (9 ULg)
Full Text
See detailLes organisations de commerce équitable entre solidarité et marché
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

in Turcotte, Marie-France; Hervieux, Chantal (Eds.) Mettre en marché pour une cause : Enjeux commerciaux et impacts du commerce équitable (2010)

Toutes les organisations de commerce équitable (OCE) ont en commun d’être confrontées aux tensions traversant l’ensemble du mouvement équitable, entre une logique de solidarité et une logique de marché ... [more ▼]

Toutes les organisations de commerce équitable (OCE) ont en commun d’être confrontées aux tensions traversant l’ensemble du mouvement équitable, entre une logique de solidarité et une logique de marché. Ce qui différencie les OCE, c’est la manière de gérer cette tension et de se positionner par rapport à ces différentes logiques. L’objectif de cette contribution est d’éclairer ces différents positionnements à travers l’étude des objectifs organisationnels, des ressources, du statut juridique et des instances de gouvernance des OCE. Nous commençons par présenter la grille théorique qui introduit ces différents indicateurs organisationnels. Ensuite, nous proposons quatre scénarios possibles (et empiriquement observés) de gestion des tensions : le scénario commercial, le scénario socio-politique, le scénario intégratif et le scénario de dédoublement. Ces scénarios sont illustrés par des exemples d’OCE du Nord. Enfin, après une synthèse de ces quatre scénarios, nous nous penchons sur leurs implications sur l’avenir du mouvement équitable. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 155 (9 ULg)
See detailInnovation sociale et diversité organisationnelle : le cas du commerce équitable
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

in Degavre, F.; Desmette, D.; Mangez, E. (Eds.) et al Transformations et innovations économiques et sociales en Europe : quelles sorties de crise ? Regards interdisciplinaires (2010)

A common view in the literature on social entrepreneurship and social enterprise is to highlight the fact that social innovation crosses the organizational forms. But does that social innovation should be ... [more ▼]

A common view in the literature on social entrepreneurship and social enterprise is to highlight the fact that social innovation crosses the organizational forms. But does that social innovation should be considered regardless of the organizational form? Fair Trade (FT) offers a quite interesting example of both a social innovation and a field in which diverse organizational forms coexist. My research questions are twofold: (1) what are the different types of organizational forms that underlie social innovation in the FT sector?; (2) do these different forms bring different types of social innovation? The methodology consists of interviews with the leaders of 57 Fair Trade Social Enterprises (FTSEs) in four European regions: Belgium, France (Rhône-Alpes), United Kingdom (England) and Italy (Rome). The findings show that the legal forms and governance models–the two elements of the organizational form considered here–can be combined into five categories of organizational forms: individual, manager-owned business, volunteer-based, multi-stakeholder cooperative and group. These categories seem to be linked, at least to a certain extent, to the age of the FTSE and to its goals. Certain forms seem to signal a particular type of social innovation. Volunteer-based FTSEs use education and advocacy as the main channel to pursue social change at the global level, and see the partnerships with the producers in the South as a vehicle to support the former goal. Individual and business-form FTSEs focus on offering benefits to the producers through a profitable commercial activity. And multi-stakeholder cooperatives and groups generally seek to combine both types of social innovation. However, nuances exist and lead to considering the organisational form as vehicles that may serve various purposes according to the context and the entrepreneurs’ profiles. I suggest three theoretical frameworks to interpret the diversity of organizational forms and its link with the logics of social innovation. Neo-institutional economics allow to see organizational diversity as the result of the production of different types of goods within the “FT bundle”. New institutionalism in organizational analysis emphasizes organizational diversity as the result of either weak (or non-existent) or multiple institutional logics. And institutional entrepreneurship highlights the ability of FTSEs to shape the environment in a way that legitimizes their own way of conceiving social innovation. I conclude that these three frameworks offer complementary explanations to organizational diversity and that the latter is an asset rather than an obstacle for carrying social innovation in multiple and complementary ways. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 318 (9 ULg)
Full Text
Peer Reviewed
See detailThe governance of fair trade social enterprises in Belgium
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

in Social Enterprise Journal (2010), 6(2), 110-124

Purpose – This article addresses the governance of “Fair Trade Social Enterprises” (FTSEs), i.e., the organisations exclusively dedicated to the import, distribution and/or labelling of fairly traded ... [more ▼]

Purpose – This article addresses the governance of “Fair Trade Social Enterprises” (FTSEs), i.e., the organisations exclusively dedicated to the import, distribution and/or labelling of fairly traded products. The aims are (1) to describe and categorise the types of persons and stakeholder groups represented in FTSEs’ governance structures and (2) to look at the link between stakeholder involvement and other organisational features such as resources, goals and activities. Design/methodology/approach – These questions are investigated through a qualitative field study based on face-to-face interviews with the managers of 15 Belgian FTSEs. Findings – I distinguish three governance models each entailing different governance paradigms: the managerial model, the volunteer-based model and the multi-stakeholder model. In the three governance models, it is possible to link, to a certain extent, the composition of the governance structures, the access to resources and the goal priorities regarding the different dimensions of the FT activity. In brief, governance appears as an organisational entry revealing much information about the vision and the strategy of the FTSEs. Research limitations/implications – This study is limited to Belgian FTSEs and must be considered as one of the first attempts in characterising the specific features and challenges of organisational governance in the FT context. International comparative studies exploring FTSE’s governance in a more longitudinal perspective, combining the standpoints of diverse organisational actors, would be most welcome in the future. Originality/value – As this article shows, the multidimensional nature of FT and the coexistence of different types of FTSEs in the same country make this a very interesting field to investigate the challenges of governance in social enterprises. Social enterprises and those researching them should pay more attention to the importance of adopting and conceiving governance schemes that are adapted to their multiple missions and enable the access to multiple resources. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 245 (14 ULg)
Full Text
See detailL'importance des coopératives dans le commerce équitable
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

Report (2009)

Dans cette huitième e-note, Benjamin Huybrechts (Centre d’Economie Sociale, HEC Management School, Université de Liège) analyse la relation entre le commerce équitable et l’entrepreneuriat coopératif. Il ... [more ▼]

Dans cette huitième e-note, Benjamin Huybrechts (Centre d’Economie Sociale, HEC Management School, Université de Liège) analyse la relation entre le commerce équitable et l’entrepreneuriat coopératif. Il en conclut que le modèle du commerce équitable a tout à gagner à tenter d’appliquer les principes d’équité, de justice et de démocratie qu’il promeut également à l’interne des organisations, tant au Sud qu’au Nord. A l’inverse, le mouvement coopératif a tout à gagner à s’appuyer sur le commerce équitable pour donner un nouveau souffle à ses principes et à ses acteurs dans un contexte de dialogue Nord-Sud. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 70 (9 ULg)
Full Text
Peer Reviewed
See detailDoes Social Innovation vary with the Organisational Form? Exploring the Diversity of Fair Trade Social Enterprises in Europe
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

Conference (2009, September)

A common view in the literature on social entrepreneurship and social enterprise is to highlight the fact that social innovation crosses the organizational forms. But does that social innovation should be ... [more ▼]

A common view in the literature on social entrepreneurship and social enterprise is to highlight the fact that social innovation crosses the organizational forms. But does that social innovation should be considered regardless of the organizational form? Fair Trade (FT) offers a quite interesting example of both a social innovation and a field in which diverse organizational forms coexist. My research questions are twofold: (1) what are the different types of organizational forms that underlie social innovation in the FT sector?; (2) do these different forms bring different types of social innovation? The methodology consists of interviews with the leaders of 57 Fair Trade Social Enterprises (FTSEs) in four European regions: Belgium, France (Rhône-Alpes), United Kingdom (England) and Italy (Rome). The findings show that the legal forms and governance models–the two elements of the organizational form considered here–can be combined into five categories of organizational forms: individual, manager-owned business, volunteer-based, multi-stakeholder cooperative and group. These categories seem to be linked, at least to a certain extent, to the age of the FTSE and to its goals. Certain forms seem to signal a particular type of social innovation. Volunteer-based FTSEs use education and advocacy as the main channel to pursue social change at the global level, and see the partnerships with the producers in the South as a vehicle to support the former goal. Individual and business-form FTSEs focus on offering benefits to the producers through a profitable commercial activity. And multi-stakeholder cooperatives and groups generally seek to combine both types of social innovation. However, nuances exist and lead to considering the organisational form as vehicles that may serve various purposes according to the context and the entrepreneurs’ profiles. I suggest three theoretical frameworks to interpret the diversity of organizational forms and its link with the logics of social innovation. Neo-institutional economics allow to see organizational diversity as the result of the production of different types of goods within the “FT bundle”. New institutionalism in organizational analysis emphasizes organizational diversity as the result of either weak (or non-existent) or multiple institutional logics. And institutional entrepreneurship highlights the ability of FTSEs to shape the environment in a way that legitimizes their own way of conceiving social innovation. I conclude that these three frameworks offer complementary explanations to organizational diversity and that the latter is an asset rather than an obstacle for carrying social innovation in multiple and complementary ways. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 91 (10 ULg)
Full Text
Peer Reviewed
See detailFair Trade organizations as examples of social enterprises? Evidence from four European regions
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

Conference (2008, July 09)

Given their multidimensional missions, combining economic, social and sometimes political dimensions, FTOs have been proposed quite early as examples of “social enterprise” (SE). Such link has been made ... [more ▼]

Given their multidimensional missions, combining economic, social and sometimes political dimensions, FTOs have been proposed quite early as examples of “social enterprise” (SE). Such link has been made in a particularly explicit way in the United Kingdom, by both academics (e.g. Martin and Osberg, 2007; Nicholls, 2006) and practitioners. Following Dart (2004), the trend for FTOs to depict themselves (and to be depicted) as SEs probably stems from a research of legitimacy towards an environment that promotes values of entrepreneurship and innovation. However, if FTOs are considered as obvious examples of SE, there still needs to be explained carefully why this is the case, and to what extent. Is it the involvement in FT that makes the enterprises “social”, or is it a set of particular organisational characteristics shared by most FTOs, or is it a combination of both? If the fact of “doing Fair Trade” is not a sufficient criterion to generate a SE dynamics – as we believe it –, then what is it in FTOs that makes these organisations eligible as SEs? The answers to these questions are closely linked to the framework used to define SE. While we try to consider different conceptualisations of SE in our analysis (part 1), we pay a special attention to the “multiple goal” and “multiple stakeholders” features put forward by the authors of the “EMES network”. In part 2, we recall the basics of the FT concept and the historical evolution of the movement. We then present our empirical data on FTOs in four European regions. Finally, we confront these data to some of the SE features identified in the literature (part 3). In this analysis, we particularly try to examine to what extent FTOs pursue multiple goals and involve multiple stakeholders, and how such organisational characteristics could be linked to each other and to other features such as resources, age and size. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 67 (4 ULg)
Full Text
Peer Reviewed
See detailFair Trade Organisations in Europe: A Significant Field of Social Enterprise?
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

Conference (2008, June 26)

With the help of examples of FTOs in Belgium, France, Italy and the UK, we have applied some of the features of SE approaches to the context of FT. It appears that FTOs are particularly significant ... [more ▼]

With the help of examples of FTOs in Belgium, France, Italy and the UK, we have applied some of the features of SE approaches to the context of FT. It appears that FTOs are particularly significant examples of SEs, combining in different ways economic, social and sometimes political dimensions. From more NGO-like to more business-like configurations, all FTOs of our sample seem to respect the key features of SEs, under which the primacy of 23 the social mission, the limited (if any) profit distribution, the focus on innovation and at least some degree of self-financing. Nevertheless, there is some heterogeneity in terms of FTOs’ goals and activities. While all FTOs seem to combine, at least, economic and social dimensions – although at varying degrees and forms –, the political dimension is not present in the same way for all FTOs. Pioneer FTOs generally conduct education and advocacy activities in a developed and explicit way. Newcomer FTOs, however, have heterogeneous profiles in terms of political involvement, as the positioning seems to depend much on the entrepreneur’s choices. In terms of governance, practices are also very diverse in terms of leaders’ profiles, legal forms and stakeholders’ involvement in the decision-making structures. Some FTOs are quasi-individual ventures and are thus close to some American approaches of SE. Other FTOs are much more multi-stakeholder and fit better in the EMES conceptualisation of SE. The governance structure also seems to reflect to a certain extent the positioning of the FTO towards the different dimensions of FT. FTOs led by activists and having volunteers or partner NGOs on their Board seem to have a stronger focus on non-economic (social and political) goals. In the other sense, very economic-oriented FTOs are often run by managers with a business background and governed by their manager and/or their shareholders. As a conclusion, this article has tried to provide some theoretical and empirical support to the implicit link that has been established, both in the academic world and in the field practice, between FT and SE. The diversity of the FT sector echoes the rich diversity of SEs’ practices and conceptualisations. In such sense, considering FTOs as SEs is probably made easier because of the wide and flexible theoretical framework of SE – few authors claiming to have a “definition” of SE. If more restricted conceptions of SE were to emerge – e.g., the limitation of SE to formal Third Sector legal forms, or to 100% market financing –, then part of the FTOs would be excluded from the SE area. In such sense, FT appears as an important laboratory the evolutions of which can feed the theoretical construction of SE. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 43 (3 ULg)
Full Text
Peer Reviewed
See detailLe positionnement des organisations de commerce équitable entre l’économique, le social et le politique : essai de typologie et illustrations en Belgique, en France et au Royaume-Uni
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

Conference (2008, June 05)

Parallèlement à la croissance exponentielle de ses ventes et de sa notoriété, le mouvement du commerce équitable (CE) connaît une diversification croissante de son paysage organisationnel (Nicholls & Opal ... [more ▼]

Parallèlement à la croissance exponentielle de ses ventes et de sa notoriété, le mouvement du commerce équitable (CE) connaît une diversification croissante de son paysage organisationnel (Nicholls & Opal, 2005; Wilkinson, 2007). Alors qu’à ses débuts, le mouvement était porté par des organisations militantes relativement homogènes, celles-ci se sont progressivement diversifiées, tandis que de nouveaux acteurs sont apparus avec une dynamique commerciale plus marquée (Gendron, 2004; Moore, 2004; Renard, 2003). Si toutes les organisations de commerce équitable (OCE) ont en commun de chercher à soutenir des organisations de producteurs au Sud à travers une activité commerciale « équitable » dans le cadre d'un développement durable Nord-Sud, les stratégies adoptées peuvent fortement différer (Wilkinson, 2007). Ainsi, en caricaturant quelque peu, certaines OCE misent principalement sur le partenariat commercial, encadré par un processus de labellisation, et prônent un développement essentiellement quantitatif de la filière, notamment à travers la distribution des produits en grandes surfaces. D'autres, par contre, insistent plus sur la qualité des partenariats avec les producteurs marginalisés et misent sur les activités de sensibilisation des citoyens et de lobbying auprès des pouvoirs publics dans le but de modifier en profondeur les règles du commerce international. Quelle que soit leur stratégie, les OCE sont inévitablement confrontées aux tensions traversant l’ensemble du mouvement équitable. Ces tensions semblent pouvoir se résumer, globalement et malgré certaines nuances dans les appellations, à deux grands pôles : le pôle économique, de « marché » d’une part, et le pôle socio-politique, de « solidarité » d’autre part. Ce qui différencie les OCE, c’est donc la manière de gérer cette tension et de se positionner par rapport à ces différentes logiques. L’objectif de cette contribution est précisément d’éclairer ces différents positionnements organisationnels sur le « continuum » entre l’économique et le socio-politique. Nous commençons par présenter ce continuum du CE sur lequel les acteurs se positionnent. Nous proposons ensuite différents indicateurs organisationnels susceptibles d'appréhender ces positionnements. A partir de la théorie des organisations appliquée à différentes formes organisationnelles, nous nous penchons sur les objectifs organisationnels, les ressources, le statut juridique et la composition des éventuelles instances de gouvernance (principalement l'assemblée générale et le conseil d'administration). Nous rappelons dans quelle mesure, selon la littérature, ces indicateurs peuvent être révélateurs du positionnement stratégique de l'organisation. Ensuite, nous proposons quatre profils organisationnels possibles pour gérer les tensions entre les différents pôles du CE. Chacun de ces profils est caractérisé par rapport aux indicateurs organisationnels proposés : objectifs déclarés, types de ressources mobilisées (ventes, dons, subventions, bénévolat), statut juridique (association, coopérative, entreprise individuelle, société anonyme,...) et composition des instances de gouvernance (types de parties prenantes impliquées). Chaque profil est ensuite illustré par des exemples d'organisations provenant de trois études de terrain réalisées auprès d’OCE en Belgique, en France (dans la région Rhône-Alpes) et au Royaume-Uni. Enfin, après une synthèse de ces quatre profils, nous nous penchons sur leurs implications sur l’avenir du mouvement équitable. Nous cherchons à percevoir l'évolution des stratégies de positionnement des OCE de manière à distinguer les perspectives futures de la filière. La question posée est de savoir si les différents profils de positionnement peuvent continuer à coexister de manière complémentaire ou si, au contraire, ils mènent à l'apparition de différentes formes de CE n'ayant plus en commun que leur appellation. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 146 (8 ULg)
Full Text
Peer Reviewed
See detailThe evolution of the Fair Trade organisational landscape in France and in Belgium
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

Conference (2008, May 14)

Parallel to the dramatic growth of its sales and public awareness, the Fair Trade movement has seen its organisational landscape become increasingly diversified. While Fair Trade nonprofit pioneers were ... [more ▼]

Parallel to the dramatic growth of its sales and public awareness, the Fair Trade movement has seen its organisational landscape become increasingly diversified. While Fair Trade nonprofit pioneers were initially relatively homogeneous in terms of goals and structures, the economic development of the initiative, driven by the sales of Fair Trade products in mainstream distribution channels, has led to the emergence of a multitude of new actors with much more heterogeneous behaviours – in spite of the general trend towards a stronger market orientation – (Gendron, 2004; Moore, 2004; Nicholls & Opal, 2005; Renard, 2003). When observing the evolution of Fair Trade organisations (FTOs), i.e., organisations claiming to be totally dedicated to Fair Trade, three trends can be observed: Fair Trade pioneers have adopted more business-oriented profiles and more complex and specialised organisational structures; New small Fair Trade businesses have emerged with a stronger economic specialisation on a particular product or distribution channel ; « Old » and « new » FTOs increasingly gather into networks with two types of purposes: to promote Fair Trade and to have a minimum political representation (advocacy networks) and to face common socio-economic challenges (socio-economic networks). The goal of this contribution is to analyse these three trends with the help of a sample of nearly fourty FTOs in Belgium and in the French Rhône-Alpes region. We can thus illustrate the three trends on the basis of both general observations and precise examples. We also try to compare the two regions and to explore to what extent the evolution of FTOs reveals more global trends within the Fair Trade movement. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 66 (3 ULg)
Full Text
Peer Reviewed
See detailThe Dynamics of Fair Trade as a Mixed-form Market
Becchetti, Leonardo; Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

in Journal of Business Ethics (2008), 81(4), 733-750

This article analyses the Fair Trade sector as a “mixed-form market,” i.e., a market in which different types of players (in this case, nonprofit, co-operative and for-profit organizations) coexist and ... [more ▼]

This article analyses the Fair Trade sector as a “mixed-form market,” i.e., a market in which different types of players (in this case, nonprofit, co-operative and for-profit organizations) coexist and compete. The purposes of this article are (1) to understand the factors that have led Fair Trade to become a mixed-form market and (2) to propose some trails to understand the market dynamics that result from the interactions between the different types of players. We start by defining briefly Fair Trade, its different dimensions (including the “fair” quality of the products) and its organizational landscape, focusing on the distinction between the pioneer “Alternative Trading Organizations” and the second-mover companies. Then, we recall the theoretical emergence factors for each type of organization (nonprofit, co-operative and for-profit) and apply these emergence factors to the context of Fair Trade. This analysis allows us to capture the specificities of each type of operator with regard to Fair Trade and, thus, to have a better understanding of the dynamics in the sector. Such dynamics includes competition, but also conflict and partnership. Our analysis includes elements on ethical imitation, consumers’ behaviors, effects on welfare and the role of the government. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 91 (9 ULg)
Full Text
Peer Reviewed
See detailAre Fair Trade Organizations necessarily Social Enterprises?
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg; Defourny, Jacques ULg

in Social Enterprise Journal (2008), 4(3), 186-201

Purpose – Fair trade organisations (FTOs) have been taken quite early as examples of Social Enterprises (SE) and have contributed to the shaping of the SE concept. The purpose of this paper is to examine ... [more ▼]

Purpose – Fair trade organisations (FTOs) have been taken quite early as examples of Social Enterprises (SE) and have contributed to the shaping of the SE concept. The purpose of this paper is to examine more deeply the link between FTOs and SE, both at a conceptual and at an empirical level. Design/methodology/approach – First, different theoretical frameworks of SE are introduced and confront FT to each of these frameworks. The second step is an empirical study of FTOs across four European countries to illustrate and deepen the links between FT and SE, focusing on the goals and the governance structures of FTOs. Findings – All the FTOs combine in some way economic, social and sometimes also political goals. FTOs are thus coherent to the “hybrid goals” nature of SEs. FTOs' governance is also quite specific and often innovative in terms of organisational architecture and stakeholders' involvement. Some FTOs are closer to the European – participatory – approach while others are closer to US – individual – approaches. Finally, the governance structures of FTOs seem to reflect quite well their goal mix. Research limitations/implications – This paper provides a more solid basis for the often implicit link between FT and SE. Future researches could use this work to explore specific topics of the SE literature in the context of FT (e.g. stakeholders' involvement). The FT example could also be used to examine further the shifting boundaries of the SE reality. Originality/value – The originality of this paper is to apply the SE concept to a specific field and to show how, within this field, there is at the same time a diversity of organisations, reflecting the diversity of SE approaches; and a range of specific features (especially in terms of goal mix and governance) distinguishing SEs from other types of organisations. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 193 (17 ULg)
Full Text
See detailThe Governance of Fair Trade Organizations. A Focus on Stakeholders' Representation
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

in HEC Working Paper (2007), 200706/02

This article analyzes the governance structures of Fair Trade Organizations (FTOs), i.e. the organizations (nonprofit, co-operative or for-profit firms) exclusively dedicated to the import, distribution ... [more ▼]

This article analyzes the governance structures of Fair Trade Organizations (FTOs), i.e. the organizations (nonprofit, co-operative or for-profit firms) exclusively dedicated to the import, distribution and/or labeling of Fair Trade products. Among the possible governance issues, I have chosen to investigate a recent topic in the study of social enterprises: the involvement of different stakeholder groups on the Board of Directors. The goals of this article are (1) to analyze to what extent FTOs involve different stakeholders on their boards and (2) to propose some possible factors that could determine the extent of such involvement. In order to investigate these questions, I study the organizations of the Fair Trade sector in Belgium, a country that seems representative of the European Fair Trade sector. Despite a number of methodological limitations, the results show that the legal status and the goal and resource mixes have an influence on stakeholders’ representation on the board. This influence is rather observable in terms of dominance (which types of stakeholders dominate the board?) than in terms of dispersion (how many different types of stakeholders are represented?). The article ends with a proposition of typology of FTOs according to their positioning in terms of both stakeholders’ representation and goal and resource mixes. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 61 (3 ULg)
Full Text
Peer Reviewed
See detailFondements et implications de la diversité organisationnelle au sein du commerce équitable
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

in Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics = Annales de l'Economie Publique, Sociale et Coopérative (2007), 78(2), 195-218

This article aims to examine the organizational landscape of rapidly growing social innovation: Fair Trade. The author seeks to understand the reasons of the diversity of organizational forms in this ... [more ▼]

This article aims to examine the organizational landscape of rapidly growing social innovation: Fair Trade. The author seeks to understand the reasons of the diversity of organizational forms in this sector. The concept of Fair Trade is first decomposed into four types of economic goods. Then, each type of organizational form is examined with regard to the production of these goods. Finally, the author suggests a number of consequences of organizational diversity on the evolution of this sector, focusing on Europe and providing examples from the field of Fair Trade in Belgium. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 92 (4 ULg)