Fourth sector

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Fourth sector

Terminology is constantly evolving, nowhere more actively than in the contested space between non-profit and for-profit definitions of social enterprise.

At the Voice 11 conference on 30 March 2011, the head of corporate responsibility and sustainability for O2, Bill Eyres, argued that creating a "fourth sector" between social enterprise and private enterprise was the way to drive change.

Eyres said: ‘The environmental credit crunch means business as usual isn’t an option. The challenge is to remake the economy for the future and this is why CSR doesn’t work – it doesn’t get to the heart of how a business creates change.

‘The co-operative space between social enterprise and private enterprise, which some people call the fourth sector, is actually how you drive change.’

Source: Social Enterprise Livewire, 6 Apr 11: