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L'utilité sociale : des pratiques aux représentations. Une étude de cas dans le champ de l'insertion par l'activité économique

Abstract : Although non-profit organizations are actors of economic development, the evaluation of their productions in terms of social utility remains the subject of much debate and controversy. At the crossroads of various socio-political challenges, "social utility" is a plurivalent notion, which remains to be consolidated. It is used to defend public financing (institutional register), to describe the social and cooperative economy (identity register) and to produce new evaluation principles (value register). These stakes join the same problem: the uncertainty which presses on the coordination. According to the Economy of Convention, the uncertainty is the result of the existence of a principal variety of coordination. This PhD thesis focuses on the question of how to create a framework to coordinate the social utility of non-profit organisations. Theoretical paradigm mobilized send back to the economic sociology, developing an anchored methodology on one sector (Work Integration Social Enterprises) and one area (Urban community of Nantes). A preliminary and preparatory period was led on the territory, inspired by Grounded Theory of sociology of Chicago so as to bring to the foreground the problematic of the social utility on this territory. The result of this phase, case studies were defined and realized in one sphere of productive activities (recovery, sorting, repair, reconditioning and recycling of various kinds of materials). The thematic analysis of discourses stated an unstable framework of social utility, because of an imbalance between the two repository "rehabilitation" and "useful activities". The analysis of the mode of regulation between Work Integration Social Enterprises and authorities (joint regulation) showed that the social utility takes the shape of an auto-maintained rule and not a common superior principle because of a quasi-exclusive construction on repository "rehabilitation".
Nevertheless, the model of productive activities of these recovery/recycling organisations is likely to allow the stabilization of the framework of coordinating social utility, by integrating the social utility of the rehabilitation measures in the tackling of social unemployment (repository "rehabilitation") as well as the social utility of the environmental activities (repository "useful activities")
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Hélène Trouvé. L'utilité sociale : des pratiques aux représentations. Une étude de cas dans le champ de l'insertion par l'activité économique. Economies et finances. Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - Paris I, 2007. Français. ⟨tel-00226400⟩

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