Dec. 20, 2013 – Recent new economy news

Most news on the new economy comes from outside the US, of course.

International Cooperative Alliance (ICA) Global Conference

This event, in Cape Town,  “featured a plenary session on sustainability focused on a scan undertaken by the ICA, in collaboration with the Candian worker cooperative Sustainability Solution Group.”

“The scan was aimed at assessing to what extent cooperatives were compatible with the notion of sustainability. The findings suggest there is a clear and direct relationship between sustainability and how cooperatives describe themselves. …

“Cooperatives are anti-capitalist; it is inherent to their DNA. My advice to the movement is to keep on going, keep promoting your co-operative difference. Sustainable development is a sweet spot for co-operatives. It’s about reframing the agenda, prosperity and solving problems rather than creating problems.” Sustainability Solutions, itself a worker cooperative at the forefront of sustainability in Canada, used a technical analysis to highlight the key concepts underlying sustainability and co-operatives, while exploring the degree to which these concepts were compatible or overlapped. By looking at annual reports and co-operative websites, the Sustainability Solutions team managed to collect data on cooperatives from all over the world.”

Read: Sustainability Scan of cooperatives

French worker cooperatives present to young people and teachers

“In a context where the French Government wishes to encourage the reconciliation of school and work and promote the social and solidarity economy in education, French worker cooperatives are promoting the cooperative model for young people. On the occasion of the Social and Solidarity Economy in November, the General Confederation of French Worker Cooperatives (CG Scop) launched the first animated video on cooperatives and participatory enterprises.” (Emphasis added.)

See: French worker cooperatives present to young people and teachers (

International Cooperative Alliance

See more news items from the ICA at

Meanwhile, in Britain, Incentivising employee ownership is the talk of the new government angle on business:

“In his Autumn Statement, the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced significant tax initiatives aimed at encouraging employee ownership, which are contained in the draft Finance Bill 2014. … The plan has met with fierce criticism from Labour and trade unions. The Office for Budgetary Responsibility warned in December that the scheme could cost Britain £1bn a year in lost revenues.”


There is one tidbit from the US, a reader submitted article on staffing changes.

Wallingford’s Burns & McDonnell Promotes Two Employee-Owners To Principal

“Burns & McDonnell is a 100 percent employee-owned company and was recently named by Fortune Magazine as one of America’s “100 Best Companies to Work For. Burns & McDonnell’s New England headquarters is located in Wallingford and is managing over $7 billion worth of infrastructure projects throughout the Northeast and Canada.”

You go, Burns & McDonnell. Considering basically all studies have shown that worker-owned enterprises are more productive, have lower turnover and higher job satisfaction, eventually worker-owned enterprises will dominate, but the capitalists may destroy the earth and/or the human race first.


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