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Business or third sector? What are the dimensions and implications of researching and conceptualising the overlap between business and third sector?

By Andrea Westall


This paper is designed to ‘problematise’ the business/third sector boundary in order to inform future research into third sector theorising or policy development. It sets out some of the reasons behind the development of the concepts of the ‘third sector’ and ‘social enterprise’ in the UK, and briefly shows the scope and limits of the different theories underpinning European and US-influenced research and practice. It also illustrates some of the many dimensions, motivations and values of the kinds of organisations to be found in this cross-over space, as well as the challenges and opportunities which this diversity creates for any future research or policy creation

Topics: H Social Sciences (General), HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Publisher: University of Birmingham
Year: 2009
OAI identifier:

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