Assessing the Social Impacts of Regional Services: The Case of a Portuguese Municipality

In recent years, the social economy is increasingly seen as a viable means to address social problems. Social enterprises, as well as public projects and initiatives targeted to meet social purposes, offer organizational models that assume heterogeneity, flexibility and adaptability to the ‘real world and real problems’. Despite the growing popularity of social initiatives, decision makers still face a paucity in what concerns the available models and tools to adequately assess its sustainability, and its impacts, notably the nature of its contribution to economic growth. This study was carried out at the local level, by analyzing the social impact initiatives and projects promoted by the Municipality of Albergaria-a-Velha (Câmara Municipal de Albergaria-a-Velha -CMA), a municipality of 25,000 inhabitants in the central region of Portugal. This work focuses on the challenges related to the qualifications and employability of citizens, which stands out as one of the key concerns in the Portuguese economy, particularly expressive in the context of small-scale cities and inland territories. The study offers a characterization of the Municipality, its socio-economic structure and challenges, followed by an exploratory analysis of multiple sourced data, collected from the CMA's documental sources as well as from privileged informants. The purpose is to conduct detailed analysis of the CMA's social projects, aimed at characterizing its potential impact for the model of qualifications and employability of the citizens of the Municipality. The study encompasses a discussion of the socio-economic profile of the municipality, notably its asymmetries, the analysis of the social projects and initiatives, as well as of data derived from inquiry actors involved in the implementation of the social projects and its beneficiaries. Finally, the results obtained with the Better Life Index will be included. This study makes it possible to ascertain if what is implicit in the literature goes to the encounter of what one experiences in reality.

Research on the Strategy of Whole-Life-Cycle Campus Design from the Perspective of Sustainable Concept: A Case Study on Hangzhou Senior High School in Zhejiang

With the development of social economy and the popularization of quality education, the Chinese government invests more and more funding in education. Campus constructions are experiencing a great development phase. Under the trend of sustainable development, modern green campus design needs to meet new requirements of contemporary, informational and diversified education means and adapt to future education development. Educators, designers and other participants of campus design are facing new challenges. By studying and analyzing the universal unsatisfied current situations and sustainable development requirements of Chinese campuses, this paper summarizes the strategies and intentions of the whole-life-cycle campus design. In addition, a Chinese high school in Zhejiang province is added to illustrate the design cycle in an actual case. It is aimed to make all participants of campus design, especially the designers, to realize the importance of whole-life-cycle campus design and cooperate better. Sustainable campus design is expected to come true in deed instead of becoming a slogan in this way.

Assessment of Vulnerability and Risk of Taijiang Coastal Areas to Climatic Changes

This study aims to assess the vulnerability and risk of the coastal areas of Taijiang to abnormal oceanographic phenomena. In addition, this study aims to investigate and collect data regarding the disaster losses, land utilization, and other social, economic, and environmental issues in these coastal areas to construct a coastal vulnerability and risk map based on the obtained climate-change risk assessment results. Considering the indexes of the three coastal vulnerability dimensions, namely, man-made facilities, environmental geography, and social economy, this study adopted the equal weighting process and Analytic Hierarchy Process to analyze the vulnerability of these coastal areas to disasters caused by climatic changes. Among the areas with high coastal vulnerability to climatic changes, three towns had the highest coastal vulnerability and four had the highest relative vulnerability. Areas with lower disaster risks were found to be increasingly vulnerable to disasters caused by climatic changes as time progresses.

Assessment of the Vulnerability and Risk of Climate Change on Water Supply and Demand in Taijiang Area

The development of sustainable utilization water resources is crucial. The ecological environment and water resources systems form the foundation of the existence and development of the social economy. The urban ecological support system depends on these resources as well. This research studies the vulnerability, criticality, and risk of climate change on water supply and demand in the main administrative district of the Taijiang Area (Tainan City). Based on the two situations set in this paper and various factors (indexes), this research adopts two kinds of weights (equal and AHP) to conduct the calculation and establish the water supply and demand risk map for the target year 2039. According to the risk analysis result, which is based on equal weight, only one district belongs to a high-grade district (Grade 4). Based on the AHP weight, 16 districts belong to a high-grade or higher-grade district (Grades 4 and 5), and from among them, two districts belong to the highest grade (Grade 5). These results show that the risk level of water supply and demand in cities is higher than that in towns. The government generally gives more attention to the adjustment strategy in the “cities." However, it should also provide proper adjustment strategies for the “towns" to be able to cope with the risks of water supply and demand.