If cooperatives are an essential component of a fair economy, public ownership has an even bigger role. Think essential infrastructure and services: roads, water and other utilities, emergency responders, and much more. A valuable review of many successful examples of public ownership, especially in telecommunications and electricity, is found in a chapter of the new Gar Alperovitz Book, “What Then Must We Do?” That chapter is highly recommended for balancing and correcting some of today's political polarization and confusion. It is reprinted at Read more »
A new feature film on co-op history and today’s food co-ops is nearing completion. With some 35 co-ops already contributing support for production of “Food for Change” and about 80 percent of the project's total funding already committed, a final push is underway. Contributions are tax-exempt, and only another $64,000 is needed for production of a technically top-quality resource. Read more »
Congratulations to Rebecca Dunn, who was inducted into the Cooperative Hall of Fame on May 8. Dunn, the executive director of the Cooperative Fund of New England for the past 27 years, was honored along with other leaders at ceremonies sponsored by the Cooperative Development Foundation. For details on the awards, see http://www.coopheroes.org. For more on the Cooperative Fund of New England, see http://www.cooperativefund.org/.
Advocates of cooperatives need allies with compatible visions of social change – including, most challengingly, visions that assume limits to growth and capital. The search for more stable and just alternatives to capitalism (prominently but not at all exclusively cooperatives) continues to garner greater attention. This may be especially true in the U.K. and Europe generally. There, more diverse traditions of political thought still have traction, and at the same time the failure and decline of the existing order are increasingly evident. Read more »
A TED presentation in the U.K. by Shane Hughes, titled “The Unstoppable Rise of a Collaborative Economy,” argued for the combination of a cooperative economy, a collaborative economy, and an economy of disruption and innovation. A link to his 12-minute presentation, along with thoughtful comments by Kate Whittle on the potential of the cooperative model, can be found at: http://cooperantics.wordpress.com/. Read more »
Through a grassroots funding campaign, along with lender support from NCB (National Co-op Bank) and NCDF (Northcountry Cooperative Development Fund), the Isla Vista Food Co-op has recently been able to purchase its home of thirty years. For the $1.625 million purchase, IV Food Co-op raised $200,000 for the down payment, while NCB provided the first mortgage, along with $200,000 from NCDF. Read more »