About Cooperatives

What is a co-operative?

A co-operative is an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social, and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly-owned and democratically-controlled enterprise.

Ranging from small-scale to multi-million dollar businesses across the globe, co-operatives employ more than 100 million women and men (20% more than multinational enterprises combined), and have more than 800 million individual members.

Cooperatives were officially born in 1844 when the Rochdale Society of Equitable Pioneers established the Rochdale Principles on which they ran their cooperative, when the basis for development and growth of the modern cooperative movement was established.

The co-operative model of enterprise can be applied to any business activity. They exist in traditional economic sectors such as agriculture, fisheries, consumer and financial services, housing, and production (workers’ co-operatives). However, co-operative activity spans to large number of sectors and activities including car-sharing child-care, health and social care, funeral, orchestras and philharmonics, schools, sports, tourism, utilities (electricity, water, gas, etc.), and transport (taxis, buses, etc).

 

Definition Of A Cooperative

A co-operative is an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social, and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly-owned and democratically-controlled enterprise.

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