Socially useful activities


This class provides an introduction to the "third sector", which comprises associations, foundations, mutual insurance organizations, cooperatives, and social enterprises. It is intended to enable students to grasp the place and role of these organizations in the realm of private economic and social activities as well as in the fields of public action, not only in quantitative terms but also in terms of their specificities and contributions to all political, social and economic institutions. For this purpose, we will, first of all, broadly examine the sector, before focusing on the qualitative and quantitative analysis of the different types of organizations concerned (associations, foundations, mutual insurance organizations, cooperatives, social enterprises).

Recommended Prerequisite(s)

Students must have general knowledge of public policies, private organizations, and enterprises;  Specialized knowledge, about the law and institutions, for example, is useful but not essential.

Form of assessment

The number of ECTS credits and the assessment methods are likely to be different for students in credit exchange programmes.


  • Holcman R. (Dir), Économie sociale et solidaire, Dunod, 2015.
  • Defourny J., Nyssens M. (Dir), Économie sociale et solidaire, socio-économie du tiers secteur, Deboek, 2017.
  • Laville J.L., L’économie sociale et solidaire, pratiques, théories, débats, Le Seuil, Points, 2010.
  • Dreyfus M., Histoire de l’économie sociale et solidaire de la Grande Guerre à nos jours, PUR, 2017.

Educational formula

Lecture; testimonials of professionals in the field of SSE (Regional Chamber of SSE, cooperative movement, Union of SSE employers, mutualist leaders, associative movement).

In brief

Year Fourth year

Teaching languageFrench

Teaching term Six-monthly

ECTS credits 2.0

Number of hours 18.0

Teaching activityLecture course

ValidationFinal written examination

Mandatory teaching

Open to exchange students



Educational manager :
Lafore Robert [+]