Within the European Union

Expert group of the European Commission on social economy and social enterprises, “GECES”

This group was first set up in 2011 to help the European Commission to:

  • Review the progress of the planned measures on social economy at European level;
  • Provide advice for the development and implementation of policy measures to strengthen the social economy and social enterprise ecosystem both in the Member States and on the international scene;
  • Raise awareness of actions and good practice exchange between Member States.

Topics discussed in 2020-2021 included the implementation of a European action plan for the social economy and the lessons learned from the health crisis that deeply affected the European Union and its Member States.

Steering Committee of the Luxembourg Declaration

The committee was created in Bratislava during the European conference on the social and solidarity economy and has since then been chaired by one of its member countries. For 2021, Portugal holds the presidency in order to continue its efforts in promoting the social solidarity economy.

At the committee's meetings, it discusses recent developments in the social solidarity economy in the EU member states and defines its priorities. One of the outcomes was the signing of the Toledo 2020 Declaration, which sets out the Committee's priorities for the coming years. 


In February 2018, the pilot project European Social Economy Regions (ESER) was launched. It aims to increase visibility and awareness of the social economy at regional and local level by organising outreach events.

Between 2018 and 2020, the ESER initiative generated more than 100 new regional and local partnerships, without any financial support from the European Commission.

Luxembourg has been an ESER partner since 2021 with a research project on the social and circular economy and its strong potential in the Greater Region.

Last update