Work integration social enterprises as vessels of empowerment? Perspectives from employees

Cheryl Hiu Kwan Chui*, Michelle H Y Shum, Terry Y.S. Lum

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Various countries across the East Asian region have witnessed the rapid proliferation of social enterprises, especially work integration social enterprises (WISEs) in the recent decade. Drawing from qualitative interviews with WISE employees and middle managers in Hong Kong, we examined what working in a WISE meant for employees with disabilities, and how such work differs from traditional service delivery organisations and other employment-support schemes. Three emergent themes, Meaningful Engagement, Individual-Based Empowerment and Relational-Based Empowerment, were identified as critical outcomes. Discussion pertaining to the role of WISE in the production of welfare and practice implications are presented.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-148
Number of pages16
JournalAsia Pacific Journal of Social Work and Development
Issue number2
Early online date22 Oct 2018
Publication statusPublished - 3 Apr 2019

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science

User-Defined Keywords

  • Asia
  • disability
  • empowerment
  • welfare
  • Work integration social enterprises


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