Some economists theorize that business activity runs in a cycle where the benefits of greater collaboration are embraced, but eventually shift toward greater individualism. When the self-interest model leaves too few with tangible benefits, the cooperative approach to business resurges. And the “we/me” cycle begins anew.
As we look to restructure our global economies, messages of working together to rebuild our communities have been resonating. People around the country have been reaching out to cooperatives and other development organizations as they look for ways to address local challenges. This receptive environment presents an incredible opportunity and challenge for cooperators. How do we reach out, as well as support, those communities that want a co-op?
In this issue of Solutions, we start a discussion about our next steps in growing our sector. We can all agree that greater accessibility and availability of co-ops is a good thing. Yet how do we improve and expand our current approach and take advantage of a time in history when more people are asking for assistance with starting cooperatives? We invite you to consider this issue and what we can all do to create a culture of cooperative development.
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