Rory Ridley-Duff and Mike Bull, Understanding Social
Enterprise, 2nd Edition
Sage Publications, Ltd. 2016, 410 pp.
Published online: 4 August 2016
Ó International Society for Third-Sector Research and The Johns Hopkins University 2016
Ridley-Duff and Bull in Understanding Social Enterprise provide a much needed
contribution to the theory and practice of social enterprise in a textbook format. The
book presents an example of the sheer complexity and variation of social enterprise
ﬁrms who seek organizational effectiveness and legitimacy as players for innovation
The book is broken down into three sections that ﬁrst deal with theoretical
perspectives from deﬁnition to politics; sustainable enterprises; and communities,
which covers measuring social value, income, and accounting as well as social
investment and crowdfunding. Each section is peppered with informational case
studies including an exemplar case, which link to outside resources for practitioners,
scholars, and instructors in the ﬁeld.
Chapters one and two examine competing ideologies between the market, public
interest, and social purpose. Social enterprise presents fourth space where the focus
is on the solidarity economy which prizes coownership and multistakeholder
governance. Chapter three provides us with the political landscape surrounding
social enterprise in a globalized world and the impacts of new public management
which advances employee ownership and the support for the solidarity economy.
Section two of the book asks readers to think about ethics and social capital,
social value, accounting, and investment practices. Chapters four and ﬁve are nuts
and bolts chapters to reporting and auditing practices from qualitative, quantitative,
and critical perspectives. Readers are introduced to both social return on investment
(SROI) and social accounting and auditing (SAA). Chapter ﬁve encourages those
Book Review Editor: Silvia Ferreira.
& Patsy Kraeger
Institute for Public and Nonproﬁt Studies, Georgia Southern University, PO Box 8048,
Statesboro, GA 30460-8048, USA
Voluntas (2017) 28:2820–2821