Social Innovations for the Disadvantaged Rural Regions: Hungarian Experiences of the New Type Social Cooperatives

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Abstract

The study explores the spatial specificities of the new type of social cooperatives, with an emphasis on assessing the dichotomy appearing in relation to advanced and disadvantaged areas. It also looks at the features of operation, employment role and long-term sustainability, proposing support and further development opportunities. The key goals initially set of the cooperatives have not yet been implemented uniformly. They could not have met the requirements of significant development in local economy, enhancement of self-sufficiency and the transit role entailing labour market reintegration. However, they have already fulfilled the social objectives; namely, long-term local employment almost completely. The problems are mainly caused by lack of capital resulting from the lack of creditworthiness and the difficulty of further expansion of market opportunities. For further development, new, preferably county or national level markets should thus be targeted. Hence, to achieve favourable changes, the development of well-founded marketing strategies will be necessary.

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Eastern European Countryside

The Journal of Nicolaus Copernicus University, Torun

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