Here we enter a very delicate topic, namely the third sector, a topic that Masticationpedia focuses on as the final target of the whole project.
In this context it should be fully analysed in order to understand the strategy and the importance of the project “bootstrapping”, which is the flagship of Masticationpedia. Before focusing on the latter concept, however, a brief introduction to the Third Sector should be made, referring to the National Audit Office1.
Why the third sector?
“Third sector organizations” is a term used to describe the organizations that belong to neither public nor private sector2. It includes voluntary and community organizations (both registered charities and other organizations such as associations, self-help groups and community groups), social enterprises, mutual societies and cooperatives3. "Third sector", in fact, which in the Anglo-Saxon language is signed TSO (by Third Sector Organizations).
Third sector organizations (TSOs) are generally independent from the government. An important part of the history and culture of the sector is that they are “driven by value”. This means that they are motivated by the desire to achieve social goals (for example, improved public welfare, environment or economic well-being) rather than the desire to distribute profit and reinvest any surpluses generated in pursuit of its objectives. For this reason TSOs are sometimes called “non-profit organizations”. A better term is “not for personal profit”. In many cases, TSOs must make leftovers (or “profits”) in order to be financially sustainable as in the case of Masticationpedia, which is in fact an English Charity4.
Beyond long discussions on the social functions of the Charity or the more recent legislative forms called B Corporation, the “bootstrapping” strategy of Masticationpedia is based on some principles.As described in the specific chapters of Masticationpedia, complex pathologies must be diagnosed in time and by qualified experts that should have to whom innovative and expensive technologies at hand The National Health Service or Insurances cannot afford an additional workload because their job is to deal with full-blown diseases that need protected structures. Single clinician has neither the time nor the organizational capability to honour this type of request. Many colleagues intend to acquire additional and interdisciplinary clinical scientific knowledge but do not find the sources; and when the sources are found, these people can hardly enter specialized or master’s courses as they are closed to colleagues outside the facility. Bibliographic research sources must be paid to download information and, therefore, science becomes self-referential and limited.
Masticationpedia was born from the awareness of this reality and it is for this reason that, thanks to the intellectual donations by some scientists and colleagues, innovative pure science can be spread at no cost and, contextually, with the donations that will be made, a fund can be created by distributing both scientific and social projects. Each project will be carried out with the budget thus created without having to look for funding from credit institutions, government agencies or investors5.
This is “bootstrapping”.
- ^ National Audit Office (UK), What are third sector organisations and their benefits for commissioners?
- ^ Northern Bridge, What is the third sector and what does it do?, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne.
- ^ BBC Bitesize, Types of organisations, BBC, London, UK.
- ^ HM Government, Office for Civil Society, Building a Stronger Civil Society, 2010, London.
- ^ Winborg J, Landström H, Financial bootstrapping in small businesses - A resource-based view on small business, Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, Babson College, 1997, Babson Park – ISBN: 0-910897-18-2 – in Frontiers of entrepreneurship research 1997: proceedings of the Seventeenth Annual Entrepreneurship Research Conference.