New Website for Worker Co-operative Development


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Michael Leung is something of a wizard on the intricacies of co-operative financing. He has opened a new web site, Worker Cooperative Development. It’s goal is to “address strategic barriers limiting the creation and growth of worker cooperatives and show how they can be overcome.”

Further:

The site is geared primarily towards entrepreneurs, worker co-operative developers, academics, co-op accountants, co-op lawyers, and those thinking about converting an existing business to a worker co-operative. There will be a heavy emphasis on worker co-operative fundamentals, in particular financial transactions and capital structure. The hope is to clearly lay out what is need to achieve a higher growth rate for worker co-operatives. What is proposed is a substantial rethinking of how we perceive worker ownership and startup financing, and what we hold as our core co-operative values.

With regards to “a substantial re-thinking” the site seeks to examine the lack of worker co-operatives, identify the fundamental problems limiting their proliferation, and map out a solution.

The barriers to startups and growth are traced back to assumptions in modern finance that are incompatible with worker co-operatives, the use of an accounting system which incorrectly describes basic transactions, and, ultimately, to inconsistencies in the co-operative principles. Overcoming these barriers will require a rethinking of worker ownership and the cherished co-operative identity. However, these major conceptual shifts are essential to take worker co-operatives from the economic fringe into the mainstream.

Read more at the web site, http://development.abolishhumanrentals.org .