References of "Huybrechts, Benjamin"
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See detailEntrepreneuriat social : définitions, ressorts et défis
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg; Nicholls, Alex; Mouchamps, Hugues ULg

in Bayle, Emmanuel; Dupuis, Jean-Claude (Eds.) Management des entreprises de l'économie sociale et solidaire (2012)

L'entrepreneuriat social est un concept en vogue depuis une dizaine d’années. Souvent illustré par des « success stories » provenant des quatre coins du monde dans divers secteurs (santé, éducation ... [more ▼]

L'entrepreneuriat social est un concept en vogue depuis une dizaine d’années. Souvent illustré par des « success stories » provenant des quatre coins du monde dans divers secteurs (santé, éducation, finance, culture, etc.), le concept s'impose progressivement dans le monde de l'entreprise, ainsi que dans les sphères académiques et politiques (Boschee 2006; Light 2008; Nicholls 2006b; Nyssens 2006). En plus de transformer les marchés existants, l'entrepreneuriat social a aussi contribué à créer de nouveaux marchés et de nouvelles niches, dans des domaines tels que le commerce équitable (Huybrechts 2012; Nicholls 2010a) ou la micro-finance (Armendáriz de Aghion & Morduch 2005; Battilana & Dorado 2010). Cette dernière est souvent présentée comme le porte-drapeau de l'entrepreneuriat social, notamment depuis que la Grameen Bank et son fondateur Mohammed Yunus se sont vu décerner le Prix Nobel de la Paix. Pratiquement absents des recherches universitaires avant la fin des années 90, l'entrepreneuriat social et les entreprises sociales sont devenus des thèmes de recherche importants depuis lors (Dacin et al. 2010; Defourny & Nyssens 2008b; Fayolle & Matlay 2010; Short et al. 2009), comme en témoigne le nombre croissant d'articles et de livres qui y sont consacrés . Des numéros spéciaux de différents journaux ont mis l'accent sur l'entrepreneuriat social et au moins deux nouveaux journaux ont vu le jour pour traiter spécifiquement de cette thématique et de sujets proches . Bien qu'il soit généralement bien admis que l'entrepreneuriat social et les entreprises sociales restent des notions fort contextuelles – donc contestables – qui peuvent être interprétées de différentes manières suivant l'idéologie et les objectifs des institutions qui les utilisent (Dart 2004; Dey & Steyaert 2010; Nicholls 2010c), certains traits communs commencent néanmoins à faire consensus au sein de la communauté scientifique. Le but de la première section est de présenter et de définir la notion d'entrepreneuriat social. Ensuite, l’entrepreneuriat social est comparé à d’autres notions proches mais néanmoins distinctes. La troisième section se penche sur les origines et les motivations de l'entrepreneuriat social dans une perspective historique. Dans la quatrième section, nous proposons quelques pistes pour mesurer l’ampleur du phénomène. Finalement, les conclusions de ce chapitre évoquent un certain nombre de défis à relever pour les acteurs de terrain, le monde politique et les chercheurs. [less ▲]

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See detailManaging Hybridity: (Inter-)Organizational Strategies in the Fair Trade Field
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

Conference (2011, July 07)

This paper aims to examine the concrete strategies through which organizations may reach compromises between conflicting logics. To reach this goal, this paper tries to capture some of the interactions ... [more ▼]

This paper aims to examine the concrete strategies through which organizations may reach compromises between conflicting logics. To reach this goal, this paper tries to capture some of the interactions between the organizational, inter-organizational and field levels in terms of management and diffusion of plural logics, using the case of social enterprises in the Fair Trade field. [less ▲]

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See detailRenewable Energy Source Cooperatives (REScoops): Assets, Obstacles and Diffusion Strategies
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg; Mertens de Wilmars, Sybille ULg

Conference (2011, July)

While the ability of social enterprises to generate innovative solutions to social and environmental needs is increasingly documented (eg., Defourny 2001; Harrisson & Vézina 2006; Nicholls 2006), little ... [more ▼]

While the ability of social enterprises to generate innovative solutions to social and environmental needs is increasingly documented (eg., Defourny 2001; Harrisson & Vézina 2006; Nicholls 2006), little is known about the processes through with social enterprises diffuse and institutionalize their innovations. These processes are important not only to understand institutionalized fields of practice (eg. Bouchard 2006), but also –and even more– to inform the creation of new fields through the diffusion (or „scaling up‟) of social innovations (Maguire et al. 2004; Mulgan et al. 2007). Institutionalization dynamics are at the core of „institutional theory‟, more particularly its recent agency-based developments, commonly grouped under the banner of „institutional entrepreneurship‟ (Battilana et al. 2009) or „institutional work‟ (Lawrence & Suddaby 2006). This approach seems particularly adequate to understand the emergence of new fields through the development of interorganizational collaborations, which enable the diffusion and replication of structures and practices across the field (Lawrence et al. 2002; Phillips et al. 2000). Fields centered on social innovations offer good examples of these dynamics (Mair & Marti 2006), with collaborations observed both among social enterprises pioneering the innovation (Davies 2009) and between social enterprises, governments (eg. Young 2000) and businesses (eg. Di Domenico et al. 2009; Le Ber & Branzei 2010). This paper examines the role of social enterprises in creating and diffusing innovative institutional arrangements in the field of renewable energy sources (RES). While social (ecological) movements have been instrumental in shifting the public attention towards the need for alternative energies (Sine & Lee 2009), the sector has in most countries become dominated by corporate actors experienced in building large-scale RES projects. In an attempt to counter the corporate hegemony and to protect available lands, a range of citizen initiatives have emerged under the term of REScoops (Coen 2010). Although not very numerous, these initiatives seem particularly efficient in terms of greenhouse gas emissions and may reach a large scale at the local level. Moreover, they seem particularly innovative in terms of organizational models, conceived as multi-stakeholder and cooperative schemes involving citizens, municipalities and local economic players. In the contest around new field boundaries and dominance (Santos & Eisenhardt 2009), including recognition by the government, we examine the legitimating strategies of social enterprises in having their organizational arrangements (= social innovations) recognized as a superior avenue to the management of RES (= technological innovation), especially in terms of democracy and participation. [less ▲]

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See detailCaught on the Boundary: The Micro-Processes of Social Movement-Corporate Relationships
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg; Nicholls, Alex

Conference (2010, September 13)

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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

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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 ▲]

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See detailExplaining Organizational Diversity in Fair Trade Social Enterprises
Huybrechts, Benjamin ULg

Conference (2010, March 13)

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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 ▲]

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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 ▲]

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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 ▲]

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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 ▲]

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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 ▲]

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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 ▲]

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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 ▲]

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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 ▲]

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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 ▲]

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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 ▲]

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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 ▲]

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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: 106 (12 ULg)