Contribution of social entrepreneurs on labour participation in The Hague
Bosch, I.C. van den
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Summary Social and environmental challenges of these days can be the best opportunities for business. The reintegration of the long-term unemployed into the labour market, by means of the engagement of social entrepreneurs was focussed on in this research. The Hague was chosen to analyse, because it is characterised by a low labour participation rate and the municipality launched the “Program of Action 2015-2018” to foster social entrepreneurship and labour participation. This study aimed to identify the indispensable actors and their roles within the social entrepreneurial ecosystem of The Hague. Consistently, the entrepreneurial ecosystem model of Stam (2015) was used as a starting point within this research. By means of a qualitative approach and secondary research this research contributed to the understanding of the social entrepreneurial ecosystem in The Hague. Both social entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial ecosystems are considered as generators of economic development and revitalization. Furthermore, the government involves society in the challenges they pursue. They are open for partnerships and new forms of collaboration to tackle these challenges. Recently, the The Hague labour market has to cope with a mismatch of demand and supply of labour. Especially, the vulnerable groups of people are unemployed. Social entrepreneurs could play an important role in employing this group, because they are often specialised in this specific target group. Based on the gathered data, it can be concluded that the necessity of creating partnerships between stakeholders is crucial to create a good environment for social enterprises to settle within the municipality of The Hague. Social entrepreneurs see partnerships as indispensable when running their social enterprise focussed on labour participation. But sometimes the partnerships are not efficient enough to get optimal results. The The Hague labour market is mostly pointed at creating jobs for (high) educated people. Social entrepreneurs mainly focus on small –scale manufacturing, which is an added value for the existing mismatch on the labour market. The outcome of this study could be an incentive for local governments to put more effort in an efficient collaboration within the social entrepreneurial ecosystem in order to make the match between demand and supply of labour.