Cited as: Karré, P.M. (2021). Social Enterprise in Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands: Where the Old Meets the New. In J. Defourny & M. Nyssens (eds.). Social Enterprise in Western Europe: Theory, Models and Practice (pp. 288-300). New York and London, Routledge.
This chapter discusses social enterprise in Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands and focuses especially on the relationship between social start-ups and more traditional organisational forms in the social economy or third sector. It looks at the historical roots and developments of social enterprise in Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands and discusses the rise of new-style social enterprises. The chapter examines what this development means and how it has changed the SE field in Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands and discuss the challenges and opportunities ahead. Non-profit organisations providing social services have existed in all three countries since the Middle Ages. Churches and other religious institutions, for example, played an important role in caring for the poor and the ill.