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Social economy is a branch of scientific knowledge, activity and sphere of the economy, the main goal of which is to achieve personal development, as well as to contribute to the progress of mankind. Often, such economic activities are carried out by individual organizations that do not prioritize making a profit. For these associations, firms, cooperatives, the provision of goods and services for the needs of society is at the forefront.

The concept of joint work originated at the dawn of human civilization, from the time when people realized that joint efforts to achieve results in any activity is much easier than alone. Collective labor today, centuries and millennia later, is at the heart of the entire world economy. But the role of the social market economy, which unites various social organizations in the economic sphere, is defined in many countries as a buffer between the public and private sectors.

At the same time, talking about the social economy as a separate sector has been around since the middle of the 19th century - that is, the time when entrepreneurship began to emerge within the framework of a capitalist society. This is the opinion of the economists John Stuart Mill and Leon Walras. The predecessors of modern socio-economic organizations arose as a logical response to the emerging problems of the social sphere.

A century earlier, a number of European countries felt the impact of the so-called industrial revolution: thanks to the emergence of machine production and manufactories, labor productivity increased significantly, which had a significant impact on the development of the economies of countries such as England ( cradle of the industrial revolution), including the social economy. Due to the degeneration of family labor artels, workshops or workshops into larger factories and plants, labor relations between people also changed, became more impersonal, neutral in nature, because now they were not based on kinship. As a result, a separate social class arose - the proletariat, that is, city dwellers involved in industry. At the same time, it was based on former peasants who were attracted to work at newly-made factories, and who moved to the city limits for this.

The social stratification as a result of such migration has reached its most pronounced form: the contrast between mendicant proletarians, forced to work 12-14 hours in slave conditions for meager wages, and the owners of factories and plants making their capital was obvious. Against this background, a separate philosophical trend has arisen, which closely examines such problems of social development of the economy as poverty and insecurity. Philosophers looked for ways to solve them in the transformation of the whole society, proposing to use a variety of doctrines, from classical Marxism to social utopia, from scientific socialism to the doctrines of the Catholic Church. The result of such research, however, was a far from speculative struggle for the rights of the working class, which gradually formed such a significant phenomenon today as the trade union movement, which contributed to the further socio-economic development of the economy. The trade union, as a body for monitoring the observance of the rights of the proletariat, made it possible to integrate the working class into society quite quickly - already in the twentieth century this problem was practically solved. At the same time, under the influence of the development of these philosophical doctrines, the main thesis of the future social economy crystallized: the interests of a person and his rights should always stand above the interests of capital.

In connection with the social economy, it is impossible not to mention the name of the British industrialist and philosopher Robert Owen, who became the founder of such a phenomenon as the cooperative. When the factory came into his possession, he thought about how to optimize the distribution of income among workers. This revolutionary approach, coupled with attempts to transfer the enterprise and its resources into public ownership, formed the basis of the theory of cooperatives. Owen described his experience in managing a factory and introducing cooperative foundations in a scientific paper entitled "A New View of Society, or Experiments on the Formation of Human Character", published in 1813. Under the influence of the thoughts outlined in this work, many cooperatives were formed, which became a major milestone in the formation of a socially oriented economy.

The other founders of the modern social economy are the proletarians themselves. Their attempts at self-organization formed the basis of the doctrine. Thus, the Rochdale Weavers' Association has become a pioneer among social organizations of this kind. Back in 1844, they created their own cooperative production, the management of which was based on the principle of fair distribution of profits. The success of the first enterprise was consolidated by the weavers by opening a number of similar cooperatives: they acquired workshops with spinning equipment, created their own financial bodies - a savings bank and an insurance company. Their experience has been indicative of many other British and European entrepreneurs who have followed suit. So, in Britain by 1832 there were already about 500 cooperatives, and with the success of Rochdale, their number began to grow progressively.

In Germany at the same time, under the influence of weavers from Rochdale, a certain Friedrich Wilhelm Raiffeisen founded a cooperative bakery, and later became the founder of credit cooperatives, laying another stone in the foundation of the social economy.

To understand the social structure of the economy and its separate form of management, which is the social economy, it is worthwhile to get acquainted with its conceptual base:

- Cooperative is the basic concept of the industry. It is a social organization that operates in accordance with the principles of cooperation, which are regulated and monitored at the level of international law.

  • Association is a form of a non-profit organization engaged in insurance activities on a volunteer basis.
  • Self-help societies are organizations that help to involve socially unprotected forms of the population in the labor process through the development of production.
  • Trade unions are the bodies of workers' associations, the capital of which is predominantly owned by the working class.
  • Associations are specialized organizations that provide assistance to the most vulnerable groups of the population.
  • Foundations are charitable non-profit organizations that collect funds and distribute them for the needs of public organizations, the implementation of social projects and charitable events.

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Supply and demand Market equilibrium is up

To understand how prices for goods are set in a market economy and how prices coordinate decisions of consumers and producers, the distribution of limited resources of society takes place, it is necessary to consider the market for a particular product, or an individual market. Any market can be characterized by different criteria (table 1)

When starting to study this topic, it should be borne in mind that demand, supply and equilibrium price are the main characteristics of any market. In this topic, these concepts are considered in relation to the model of a free (competitive) market. Demand D (English demand) is a model showing how many goods consumers are willing and able to buy at different prices over a certain period of time. Demand is a fact of purchase. Demand reflects the relationship between the volume of demand ($ Q $) and the price of a product ($ R $). In general, the demand function can be represented: $ Q_D = f (P) $$

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Modern economic theory is structurally divided into two sections - microeconomics and macroeconomics. As the name implies, they differ in the scale of the processes being studied.

Macroeconomics examines economic processes at the level of the country and the world. Microeconomics - at the level of individual consumers and firms.

What is macroeconomics What does macroeconomics study

Macroeconomics is the science of the economy as a whole, at the level of the country and the world.

Macroeconomics studies the rate of economic growth, production volumes, national income, general price level, money turnover. She deals with the problems of increasing employment, increasing production, economic growth, overcoming inflation, unemployment and crises.

Macroeconomics covers the entire national economy, studies it as a whole.

The main macroeconomic indicators are gross domestic product (GDP), gross national product (GNP), inflation, unemployment and exchange rate.

In macroeconomics, they talk about three markets and four agents of the economy. The three markets are the financial market, the market for goods and services, and the market for factors of production.

The four macroeconomic agents are government, enterprises, households and the foreign sector. All of them are connected by a circuit of income and expenses.

Macroeconomics strives for stability and obeys the principle of social effect.

The father of macroeconomics is considered to be the British economist John Maynard Keynes, who in 1936 published his work "The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money". In it, Keynes for the first time consistently criticized Adam Smith's idea that the “invisible hand of the market” can cope with economic difficulties without government intervention. From that moment on, they began to talk about the division of science into micro- and macroeconomics.

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Introduction to the course Features of the subject and methods History of the development of economic theory top

Question 1. Economic theory: functions, subject of study, structure.

The object of study of economic science is economics as a special sphere of human activity. There is no unity in defining economic theory. Most economists generally define economic theory as a social science that studies the problem of efficient use of limited production resources in order to maximize the satisfaction of human material needs in conditions of limited resources.

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