Given a recent great deal of public lectures, interviews, surveys and research has been undertaken - it illuminates the fact that it would seem that Co-Operatives are making a strong resurgence in recent years. The internet makes for massive global co-operative, where we are encouraged to air our views by blogs, forums, videos, own websites, contributing to others websites - yet for the most part there is a global exchange of ideals, comments and proverbial exchange of (mental) fire.
In essence we are contributing to a larger scale co-operative over the last two decades which is becoming increasingly more efficient and organised. It would seem there are no boundaries if you want to make some contribution and partake in something larger than ourselves as individual entities.
The retail business; John Lewis are constantly mentioned by the Government and media as example of a business philosophy where the rewards are shared amongst the staff involved in the running of the company - at ALL levels, with no one being left out in the cold. This supports a comprehensive Social Inclusion which is one of the three tiers of Sustainable Development.
On Thursday, 8th March 2012 Veteran economist Robin Murray (London School of Economics) and Prof Stephen Yeo (chair of the Co-Operative Heritage Trust) proudly gave a public lecture at Cardiff University on Co-Operatives in the 21st Century and reflected on where we came from and what direction are we going in? Why are Co-Operatives more successful in Europe than the UK?
The end result was although the status, the practice, the guidelines and rules that British Co-Operatives put up front are practical and functional which all involved parties are easily able to adhere to, what was lacking was up front funds. Something Northern European countries had been successful in was pulling in the funds up front to get so many ventures within the co-operatives started. So what can the UK do to improve this situation? (See 'the problem is ....' below)
(Renewable) Energy Co-Operatives
- Social Inclusion - local co-operatives for communities to get behind and reap the benefits from.
- Stable Economics - local economic benefits, the sales made in the area directly feed the profits back into the local area/community to make improvements/regeneration.
- Benign Environmental Activity - a Wind Power, Micro-Hydro or Community owned Solar/PV installation has obvious zero (or negative) Carbon positive environmental contributions to make.
We can get there!
More people are taking a strong interest in investing in Community Renewable Energy platforms, Local Food Markets, Sustainable Housing projects - We encourage you to do your research and get involved in this exciting re-emerging Co-Operatives markets. It will be a strong foot forward to improving our quality of life; socially, economically, environmentally, spiritually and make for happier lifestyles and a productive society!