12th Academy on Social and Solidarity Economy - Elective 5: SSE and formalisation of the informal economy

News | 31 January 2022
The elective courses at the SSE Academy were designed for practitioners from around the world, to debate and share practices, ideas and models on SSE action in specific areas.

The third elective of the academy took place on 22, 23 and 24 November 2021. It investigated the main contributions of the SSE to the formalisation of the informal economy. It was made available for participants in English, Spanish and Portuguese. The elective was prepared and facilitated by Ms Juliana Maziero (ITCILO) and Mr Carlos Ledesma (ITCILO).

The elective provided an overview of policies and strategies implemented to facilitate the transition of workers and economic units from the informal to the formal economy. It analysed how the guidance provided by the ILO Recommendation No. 204 is relevant to SSE units to fulfil their social and economic purposes. Finally, it provided information and tools to support SSE units transition to the formal economy. Practical experiences from different countries were discussed during the three sessions.

The first day of the elective was dedicated to framing the main concepts and trends of the informal economy and the potentially positive role of the SSE in the formalization processes. The first speaker of the day, Mr Jürgen Schwettmann (ILO Consultant), presented a technical overview of the transition of workers and economic units from the informal to the formal economy and outlined some features of the potential of the SSE. Mr Rogério Roque Amaro, economist and member of the International Network for The Promotion of the Social and Solidarity Economy (RIPESS), reflected on the connections between the SSE and the informal economy with a focus on practical experiences.

The presentation of Mr Schwettmann is available here: en - es - pt

During the second session, the participants were presented with practical cases of SSE organisations that contributed to formalisation of informal employment in different contexts. The first presentation was made by Mr José Abelli, Advisor of the Ministry of Productive Development of Argentina and a member of the Movimiento Nacional de Empresas Recuperadas. Mr. Abelli presented the example of empresas recuperadas (recuperated enterprises), showing how workers take the initiative of buying the companies going bankrupt as a way of guaranteeing their work and rights. Ms Navya Dsouza, Communications and Programme Manager at HomeNet South Asia made the second presentation. She reflected on how homeworkers can benefit from the SSE to be better integrated in supply chains. She presented the example of \home based workers of Nepal in the clothing production value chain. She reflected on how the promotion of the transition to formality can help SSE units to achieve their social and economic purposes.

The final session of the elective was structured around the creation of an Action Plan for SSE organisations for future action oriented to the transition to formality. The participants were divided into groups and reflected on the case studies prsented in the previous sessions. They were asked to identify the main challenges and opportunities for action. When they reconvened in the plenary they shared highlights of the work in groups.

For more information on the 12th edition of the SSE Academy, click here.