Press release

Do it ourselves: the launch of an ambitious strategy for a participative economy

Today Co-operatives UK has announced the publication of Do it Ourselves, a bold strategy to create a more participatory economy.

Developed over the last two years with input from 550 co-operatives, the new national co-operative development strategy sets out ambitious aims for the next two decades – from establishing mechanisms for replicating successful co-ops to increasing the amount of money spent in co-ops to £1 one in every £10.

At its core, Do it Ourselves is an invitation to co-operatives and supporters of co-operation to identify actions they can take to help create a fairer economy. It is built around three core steps:

Commit to be great at co-operation. This means living up to your own values, looking for ways to collaborate with others and choosing co-op, whether for your weekly shop or your service supplier.

Be willing to be open to new co-operation. This means having new conversations and looking for new ways to act co-operatively.

Join in campaigns for inspiring co-operation. This means having the confidence to spread the word about or campaign for co-operative action that gives you hope.

The strategy has an immediate focus on three areas of the economy where urgent action is needed: self-employed workers in the gig economy, meeting needs for social care, and the ownership of new digital platforms.

“The political uncertainties of the last year have reinforced the need to reimagine our economy" says Ed Mayo, Secretary General of Co-operatives UK.

"Issues like growing inequality, insecure work and the crisis in social care need to be addressed. Rather than waiting for government, we need to do it ourselves. This strategy is a way to harness the ideas and energies of all those who run or support co-operatives across the country, and build the fairer, more co-operative economy we need.”


Explore the strategy online and see what you and your co-op can do.

Order a hard copy of the pack, which includes a set of cards, as a creative resource to explore actions to create a participatory economy.