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Delivered by Co-operatives UK in partnership with The Co-operative Bank

Platform co-ops – your route to an ethical digital business in Scotland


Start date / time
Wednesday 08 February 2023, 1:00pm
End date / time
Wednesday 08 February 2023, 2:00pm
Organised by
Co-operatives UK
Event type
Platform co-ops – your route to an ethical business in Scotland

Discover how people in Scotland can turn to platform co-ops and put power and profits in the hands of service providers, rather than tech giants – in partnership with Co‑operative Development Scotland, part of Scottish Enterprise.

This webinar is being delivered in partnership with Co‑operative Development Scotland, part of Scottish Enterprise.

The rise of the platform economy over the last decade promised to boost flexible employment, extra income, and collaborative consumption. Instead, the ‘disruption’ of the digital economy has exploited regulations, increased precariousness of work, and created the conditions for digital giants to dominate markets.

Could there be an alternative? Do innovation, and social impact always have to lose out?

Platform co‑ops are democratically owned and controlled businesses that use an online platform or mobile app to trade, connect people and pool resources or data.

A platform co‑op is built on co‑operative principles and values which ensure the platform business:

  • Truly responds to the needs of its community
  • Embeds equity and social purpose from day one
  • Has a growth model that does not involve giving up control to external profit‑driven investors.

This webinar is delivered in partnership with Co-operative Development Scotland.

Who should attend?

  • This event is open to anyone in Scotland who wishes to learn more about platform co-ops
  • It's also relevant to business advisors, local authorities, voluntary support agencies etc who wish to improve their understanding of the platform co-op model

What will attendees learn?

  • Participants will be introduced to the platform co-op model and will learn about the global movement of entrepreneurs building ethical digital businesses
  • Understand what a platform co‑op is and isn't
  • Hear about our platform pioneers: Open Food Network, a food distribution platform and Signalise, a sign language interpreting service that uses a digital platform to connect its members: Deaf people, BSL interpreters and service user organisations
  • Participants will learn what support is available for those wishing to set up a co-op – including Business support programme for co-ops and the next UnFound Accelerator programme, which is opening for applications in December and the specialist support available from Co-operative Development Scotland

Speakers and facilitator

  • Host: Ludovica Rogers is the Programme Manager, New Co-op Ventures at Co-operatives UK and she runs the Unfound programme that supports and promotes platform co-operatives in the UK
  • Jen Smith, Signalise
  • Kayleigh Reed, Open Food Network

Recording the webinar

This webinar will be recorded. We will share the recording with participants shortly afterwards. This webinar is part of a series. If you cannot attend this one, we hope you can join us for another webinar. Alternatively, visit our step by step: start a co-op tool or read about the business support available to start-up co-ops.

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