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A District of Columbia former treasurer, who was an economic empowerment and cultural leader working to fund and inspire cooperative and community development, was found dead on September 20th after being missing for a week.

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cross-posted from Shareable

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[Editor's note:This is part three of Jim Johnson's interview with Ben Sandel of the CDS Consulting Co-op.  In this section, Ben discusses the recent explosive growth of food co-ops, cooperative responses to increased competition in the organic food market, and possible ways to expand food co-operatives beyond middle-class neighborhoods.  Parts one and two can be found here and

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The recent article in GEO’s newsletter about corporate cooperatives raised some interesting questions about the nature of cooperatives. It might be useful to briefly consider the distinctions between the cooperative structure, cooperative principles, and political agendas.

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Can people with different roles in an enterprise—such as producers, workers and consumers—all form a cooperative? This workshop discusses important considerations and strategies to avoid what some argue are inevitable conflicts. The workshop was led by attorney Jenny Kassan and Spiral Foods Cooperative member Tucker Hemquist and took place at the 2014 California Cooperatives Conference.

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On June 21, 2014, the New York City Network of Worker Cooperatives (NYC NOWC) hosted the first annual NYC Conference on Worker Cooperatives (videos of most of the conference sessions are posted here.) Two hundred people gathered at the CUNY Law School in Queens.

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[Editor's Note: In this section of our interview with Ben Sandel of the CDS Consulting Co-op, Jim Johnson asks how food co-ops can increase their share of the growing organic and local food markets.  Sandel suggests re-investment of profits along with a focus on growth, and points to Austin's Wheatsville Cooperative as a notable exemplar.  The need for new co-op finacial models, appropriate for urban and lower-income co-ops is also discussed.  You can read part one of the interview

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Amherst, MA – September - 2014 - Levellers Press, a worker co-operative, announced the publication of Building Co-operative Power! Stories and Strategies from Worker Co-Operatives in the Connecticut River Valley. 

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[Editor's Note: This interview with Ben Sandel of CDS Consulting Co-op was recorded in November of last year.  CDS provides consulting and resources for start-up food co-ops across the country.  Ben was also involved in starting the Friendly City Food Co-op in Harrisonburg VA.  Ben was interviewed by GEO Collective and Democracy At Work Network member, Jim Johnson.  Thanks to Rob Brown for provid

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The collective that brought you Beautiful Trouble: A Toolbox for Revolution is teaming up with Rachel Plattus and Eli Feghali of the New Economy Coalition to assemble a toolbox for building a just and livable future.

[Editor's note: This episode of Clearing the Fog Radio features interviews with GEO member Ajowa Nzinga Ifateyo and author Janelle Cornwell, whose new book Building Co-operative Power (co-authored with Adam Trott and GEO's Michael Johnson) is out now from Levellers Press ($19.95).  Janelle's interview starts at 5 minutes in, Ajowa's begins at 29.] 

 

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[Editor's note: Below is an interview with Robin Hahnel about the Participatory Economics movement or "Parecon."   Parecon is a theoretical economic system based on participatory decision making as the primary economic mechanism for the allocation goods, services, resources and the guidance of production.  In this interview, author and political economist Hahnel talks about his book Of the People, By the People: The Case for a Participatory E

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A Hidden Disease

If there's one thing we American's love, it's a health fad. Whether it's the paleo diet, cross-fit, vitamin supplements or hot-yoga, we gravitate towards just about anything that promises us improved health and well-being. And why shouldn't we? Health is wealth, after all.

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[Editor's note: Jo Bird of the UK's Co-operative Business Group (CBC), has asked GEO to share this petition with our readers (see below).  The Co-operative News recently published an article about the petition.  Marie-Claire Kidd explains:

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The following is a personal story about corporate cooptation at my food co-op in Northern California, North Coast Cooperative Inc.

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Co-op attorney Don Kreis discusses the legal framework under which co-ops operate in Vermont and the US, as well as a number of specific issues unique to co-ops.

 

See more interviews by Cooperative Vermont on their Youtube channel

Go to the GEO front page

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“The word ‘pathbreaking’ should not be used casually, but this is, in fact, a pathbreaking book. There is nothing like it. Jessica Gordon Nembhard’s study of Black cooperatives opens a door on a critical aspect of Black history in general and cooperative history in particular" ~ Gar Alperovtz, Lionel R. Bauman Professor of Political Economy, University of Maryland

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Editor's note:  Elinor Ostrom, winner of the 2009 Nobel prize in Economics for her work on "common pool resources," was born on August 7, 1933.  In order to mark the occassion, and to celebrate the life and accomplishments of this great woman, we present four videos of Elinor explaining the fundamentals and implications of her research.  Though we lost Elinor in 2012, her work and he

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