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Governance in co-operatives

The vocabulary of organisations, in books, business schools and workplaces, tends to be a language of hierarchy. Governance then refers to the direction of a business – the ultimate ‘buck stops here’. A different model is to understand governance in ecological terms, as a system of feedback, which allows businesses to correct course where needed. 

Whichever one you prefer, good governance has to combine the qualities of direction and of listening.

Community co-operative launches fundraising to save local pub

The once popular Fox & Hounds public house in Denmead is being saved thanks to four local businessmen and the community.

The pub has recently been taken on by locals who have formed The Fox and Hounds (Denmead) Community Co-operative Limited and means that when it opens its doors again, the pub will have been acquired by the community for the community.

Locals who want to see the pub re-open have already pledged over £200,000 towards the £550,000 cost of purchasing and refurbishing the building.

Can business be popular?

While the economic forecasts for the UK, such as by the IMF last week, are becoming more rosy, there is a concern, echoed by Vince Cable in a lecture to the Royal Economic Society, that we are really kick starting the same economy that failed last time round, with significant structural vulnerabilities, around unbalanced trade, footloose capital, stretched consumer credit and propped-up property prices.

Free event open mic event - add your voice to the Social Economy Alliance election campaign

Keynote speaker: Jayne Atherton, Business and Enterprise Editor, Metro

BOOK NOW – Tickets are going fast!

How can the next government support the social enterprise and cooperative movement?

Ten short provocations on social innovation

Here are ten short provocations on the theme of social innovation that I have pulled together from the Brazilian radical thinker, Roberto Unger, from a recent visit to the UK. Social innovation is the issue of our times – after all, what it is, is applied social change.

1. In the wake of the traditional economy, new forms of production are emerging that are characterised by permanent innovation.

2. The ‘path of least resistance’ is a hegemonic project in the richest part of the world, hostile to structural innovation.

Co-operative society legislation changes in 2014

Co-operative society legislation changes in 2014

We have an important briefing note on recent and forthcoming changes to legislation affecting co-operative societies. These include an increase in investment limits for co-operatives (Withdrawable Share Capital), the Co-operative and Community Benefit Societies Act 2014, electronic registration, insolvency rescue and the investigatory powers of the register.

The briefing note can be read here.

Tailored accountancy standards can help level the playing field for co-operatives

It may be intuitive to believe that a level playing field means co-operatives and plcs both using the same accountancy standards, but this is not necessarily true.  Current international accountancy standards are applicable for all entities, with certain exceptions, but are far more suited to plcs than they are to co-operatives, and this puts us at a disadvantage. An accountancy framework that offers separate standards as suitable for co-operatives as those for plcs would address this imbalance, as many a co-operative accountant struggling under the current imposition may agree.

Social Economy Alliance

In 2014, the Social Economy Alliance is asking co-operatives to feed in to their manifesto that sets out social and economic policy recommendations for the next Government. 

New Year, New Blog Post - Pensions

Does your co-operative employ people?  Does your co-operative have a pension scheme?  Have you heard about auto-enrolment?

This month's blog post from Co-operatives UK's advice team may fill in some of the gaps?

Top 5 co-operative business books for 2014

Just as our wider world is seen, more than ever, through the lens of competition, the world of business and markets is in fact more aware than ever of the benefits of co-operation. Here are my top five books on co-operation and social enterprise for 2014:

out now

1. Redemption: the cooperation revolution, by Berny Dohrmann – why co-operative models of organisation and business innovation are taking off across the business world


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