Analytical grid for understanding the institutional design of national Competence Centres

capacity building gathering
What is a National Competence Centre for Social Innovation? What are its role and mandate? Who takes the decisions? What services does it offer? How is it structured and what professional profiles does it deploy? Does it channel finance for social innovation initiatives? 


By the call that established the BuiCaSuS consortium and five other transnational consortia in the EU, the European Commission aimed “to support the establishment, development and professionalism of organisations that do or can assume the function of a social innovation competence centre in an EU Member State”. As the BuiCaSuS project has reached its equator, the partners agreed to establish a shared framework for analysing the purpose, structure, and functions of a Competence Centre for Social Innovation. 

The working paper is structured in three sections. First, it constructs a definition of ‘Competence Centre’ and provides an international comparison, referring to existing support structures in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Portugal, Germany, Denmark, Finland, and Poland. Second, it describes the current situation in the four partner countries of the BuiCaSuS Consortium and reflects on possible design criteria and institutional choices. Third, it proposes a methodology for analysing the institutional trajectory at the member state level and an analytical grid for drawing up blueprints for national Competence Centres, including their action plans. 

The main purpose of the document is to assist the country analytical work that is to be undertaken in the second step of this work-package. The document will guide the partners to propose the national options for the institutional design and a workplan in line with the call to reinforce social innovation ecosystems as such, and ESF funded projects in particular.

This working paper might be useful for policymakers, managing authorities of the ESF, as well as third sector operators active in the field of social economy, social entrepreneurship, and social innovation, as well as academic experts. 

Read the Shared Framework and Analytical Grid working paper here (609KB)

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