Gleanings

What role did economic cooperation play in the civil rights movement? As it turns out, a huge one. This forgotten history is the focus of Dr. Jessica Gordon Nembhard's recent book Collective Courage: A History of African-American Economic Thought and Practice, out in bookstores in May.

On his way into work every morning, Chokwe Lumumba, the late mayor of Jackson, Miss., used to pass a historical marker:  “Jackson City Hall: built 1846-7 by slave labor.”

Mark Dworkin and Melissa Young’s film “SHIFT CHANGE” will premiere at 5 p.m. Sunday, April 6 on KCTS 9. The documentary explores employee-owned businesses succeeding in today’s economy.

NCBA CLUSA is now recruiting for an Executive Director for the Philadelphia Area Cooperative Alliance (PACA). The Executive Director is responsible for the organization’s consistent achievement of its mission and financial objectives. The Executive Director will provide day-to-day leadership for Philadelphia Area Cooperative Alliance (PACA) including strategic management and organizational leadership, financial supervision, grant-writing/fundraising, promotion of PACA to internal and external audiences.

Sharing has always been essential to human life, but “What’s new,” says Neal Gorenflo, founder of Shareable Magazine, “is our blindness to it.” Through our individualized pursuit of happiness—a lifestyle ushered in during the Industrial Revolution—many of us have forgotten that for centuries the most promising source of security came from our ability to build and maintain strong social connections and respect the commons. 

As the founder and executive director of the Freelancers Union, and the CEO of the social-purpose Freelancers Insurance Company (FIC), Sara Horowitz has dedicated herself to empowering and protecting America’s independent workers. Now, as the institution she leads grows from strength to strength, she’s focusing on “New Mutualism,” a social movement of change and cooperation that's about moving from consumption to connection.

The roots of modern cooperatives stretch back more than 150 years, but it wasn't until 1995 that the International Co-operative Alliance adopted seven core values around which all cooperatives should operate. When the United Nations declared 2012 the International Year of Cooperatives, these principles renewed an important conversation about what it means to be a credit union, specifically why they exist and how they are different by design.

Experience tells us that governance in member-owned co-operatives is distinct from that in investor-owned businesses, yet we do not understand fully how this operates in practice.  This research study of governance in large co-operatives helps to fill the gaps in our knowledge.

 

Recently I jumped on a train to Birmingham and attended the founding conference of Students For Co-operation, a new national federation supporting students to set up co-operatives while at university.

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