Strategies for Change

A documentary film by Dario Azzellini and Oliver Ressler about the factory RiMaflow in Milan, Italy, which has been recovered by the workers after the former owners engaged in a fraudulent bankruptcy. The facility used to make auto parts but is now run as an open factory and is owned and controlled by its workers as a worker cooperative.
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The workers-owners at New Era Windows Cooperative have overcome many hurdles to create a sustainable, democratic business, after having twice occupied their previous place of employment, Republic Windows, in response to abuses by the owners. Worker Co-ops.
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Damanhur Ecovillage in northern Italy provides a model of a new civilization and society based around cooperation and solidarity.
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GEO has argued over the years that the worker-owned cooperative is an appealing business model for many reasons (see here, here, or anywhere else on the s

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Co-author of Building Co-operative Power and GEO Collective member Michael Johnson discusses the Valley Alliance of Worker Cooperatives and some of the many worker co-ops of the Connecticut River Valley. He also provides an overview of the contents of the book and a history of how it came to be written.
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On some occasions, rare though they are, the slogan “Another world is possible,” becomes reality.
~Raul Zibechi

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GEO is pleased to announce that we're working with the Level Translation (a project of the Intepreters' Cooperative of Madison) to release a new series of ebooks.

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THE LOSS OF PUBLIC HOPE?

by Len Krimerman, GEO Collective

Some days it does seem that we are on the wrong planet, that the worst aspects of humanity are now beyond challenge and are inescapably producing disasters – unending warfare, global climate crises, abominable increases in child slavery – that will bring short term profits to a few and leave the rest of us penniless and powerless. In his book, Radical Democracy, philosopher C. D. Lummis speaks of the “loss of public hope”:

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Movements Moving Together 16.                

Eric Berne was a psychiatrist, famous in the 60s. He was also a logical thinker and playful writer. He began his book on sex something like this: “The first thing to consider about sex is that it’s messy.”

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by Michael Johnson                       

– Keynote Address, Good Economy Conference, Zagreb 2015

I want to speak today about a crisis that has gripped Europe, and the western democracies, over the last 30 years.

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The Social Solidarity Economy is an alternative to capitalism and other authoritarian, state-dominated economic systems. In SSE, ordinary people play an active role in shaping all of the dimensions of human life: economic, social, cultural, political, and environmental. SSE exists in all sectors of the economy—production, finance, distribution, exchange, consumption and governance. SSE has the ability to take the best practices that exist in our present system (such as efficiency, use of technology and knowledge) and transform them to serve the welfare of the community based on different values and goals.
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Movements Moving Together 14.                 

The loss of perspective around 6th Principle solidarity that I spoke of in my last blog seems to be in play in Madison, WI. A recent report from the March 18, 2015 issue of the Credit Union Times Magazine critiques its own sector in this regard:

The best kept secret about credit unions might be the opportunities that exist in partnering with other local cooperatives.

Unlike many alternative economic projects that have come before, solidarity economics does not seek to build a singular model of how the economy should be structured, but rather pursues a dynamic process of economic organizing in which organizations, communities, and social movements work to identify, strengthen, connect, and create democratic and liberatory means of meeting their needs. ~Ethan Miller, from Other Economies are Possible

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Jaques Kaswan (June 14, 1924 - January 28, 2015) studied cooperatives for 50 years and was a developer of systems to support the formation of worker coops and housing coops for over 35 years. He was a co-founder of the Arizmendi Assn, as well as Walnut Street Cooperative. 

Obituary at the San Francisco Chronicle

 

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Movements Moving Together 13.                      

An email was recently sent out from NYC Worker Cooperative Coalition with this subject head:

Organising, Mobilising, and Building a Worker Cooperative Ecosystem from the Ground Up.

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