Synergy and Strategic Advantage Co-operatives and Sustainable Development

Centre for Study of Cooperatives, University of Saskatchewan

Author +
Michael E. Gertler

Year: 2006

A systematic analysis of the characteristics of co-operatives reveals many capacities that recommend them as appropriate vehicles for sustainable development. Co-operatives offer advantages as rooted, socially embedded, patient capital and as organizations that promote partnerships, co-ordinated action, and capacity building. Given changes in the operating environment, the explicit adoption of eco-social agendas can contribute to co-op viability and vitality, providing a basis for positive differentiation and for stronger ties to important constituencies, stakeholders, and strategic allies. Given their capacities as organization and enterprise, it is argued that co-ops can also contribute to new identity formation and to transformative social change.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • The Context Sustainable Development Initiatives
  • Co-operative Capacities Durable Development
  • Strategies and Pathways for Sustainable Co-operation
  • Co-operatives and Transformative Change
  • Endnotes
  • References