Workplace Democracy

by Devra Gartenstein

The more I read and learn about cooperatives and the more experience I get participating in one, the more provocative I find the question, “What is a cooperative?”

The legal definition is reasonably clear, covering two main prerequisites:  one vote per member, and equity and profit allocations based on patronage—or participation—rather than monetary contribution.

Uberfication has become shorthand for many new concepts—from the sharing economy to any significantly disruptive digital business model. But what exactly did Uber do that was materially different to earlier disruptive digital businesses? In short:

  • It created software…

  • To replace existing industry-wide operational structures…

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cross-posted from Medium

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The first Small Business Administration (SBA) loan representative that I approached for a loan stopped answering my calls and emails when he learned that I belonged to a worker cooperative.  The federal agency designed to help small businesses succeed has a policy of lending to

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[Editor's note: In the opening speech from this year's CommonBound conference, Ed Whitfield, co-managing director of the Fund for Democratic Communities (F4DC), discusses the necessary conditions for creating an economy that provides not only the knowledge, but also the means, for economic security to everyone on an equal basis.  He discusses the intersection of economic and environmental justice, the inherent biases of  our s

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by Josh Davis

 

cross-posted from venezuelanalysis.com

Solidarity, cooperation, and community empowerment are socialist values promoted by the Bolivarian Revolution in contrast to the individualism and selfishness promoted by the corporate-owned mass media. Cooperatives are quietly transforming people's values in Venezuela, and the rest of the world, though they have been mostly ignored by the mass media and by many political leaders, too.

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Tall luxury condominiums, new restaurants, coffee shops, and health food stores now punctuate most of the neighborhoods in the District of Columbia, bringing (what some consider) prosperity the likes of which the one-time "Chocolate City" has never before witnessed.

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[Editor's note: In this presentation from The Sustainable Economies Law Center's 5th Annual Fall Celebration, SELC's staff presents a comprehensive vision of a Cooperative Economic future and, more importantly, lays out concrete steps that can be taken in order to arrive there.  As an additional bonus, the presentation is creative and entertaining.  Enjoy!  (The show starts at 1:50 and runs until 35:52)]

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Developments in New York City and at CUNY

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cross-posted from YES! Magazine

From kitchens that buy and sell locally grown food, to a waste co-op that will return compost to the land, new enterprises are building an integrated food network. It's about local people keeping the wealth of their land at home.

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[Editor's note: This article is excerpted from What Then Can I Do? 10 Ways to Democratize the Economy, which originally appeared on Gar Alperovitz's website. The full article is also available in PDF format here.]

Following the first four encuentros internacionales (international gatherings) of the “Workers’ Economy,” held in Argentina, Mexico and Brazil, from 2007 to 2013, and after the first Regional Gathering of Europe and the Mediterranean, in Marseille, France in January 2014, it is now proposed to conduct Regional Gatherings in every even-numbered year and Internat

Here at GEO, we are continuing to grow and evolve in our coverage of the cooperative/solidarity economy movement. The latest addition to our informational arsenal comes in the form of GEO ebooks.

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[Editor's note: This paper by Luenens, Sanudo and Schweigert appears in the forthcoming electronic release of The Cooperatives’ Power of Innovation: Selected Texts from the International Call for Papers, produced by the International Summit of Cooperatives.  In it, the

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