The global economic crisis and its aftermath deepen the challenge of decent employment creation. The Global Jobs Pact developed in response to the crisis sets out a framework that ensures linkages between social progress and economic development.
In this context, there is increasing interest in the social economy as a way to combine social and economic goals. The Ouagadougou Symposium on the Global Jobs Pact as it relates to Africa included a recommendation to increase support to the social economy. A regional conference in October 2009 on the social economy as a response to the economic crisis in Africa defined the social economy as "a concept designating enterprises and organizations, in particular cooperatives, mutual benefit societies, associations, foundations and social enterprises, which have the specific feature of producing goods, services and knowledge while pursuing both economic and social aims and fostering solidarity."