Decreasing Inequality Through The Expansion of Larger Business Co-ops

A Peacemaking Project by Ezaridho I.

What is the injustice we are solving?

Due to the large gap in inequality where I live, there has been a significant increase in large proliferation of agricultural co-ops in my country Indonesia. In a recent research, 14.4% of the agricultural sector is dominated by worker co-ops. This is in part a movement to decrease the rising inequality gap in the country. A co-op is a business model that inverts the leadership structures of CEOs, management, and workers/consumers. This entails that the consumers and the workers are the ones with most control instead of the General Management (GM) having the lowest position in this established structure. When establishing a co-op, one must inevitably have a bank loan or investment money to start off in making the buisness. Once the individual or the group has enough money to establish a base and sufficient equipment, the workers must be coordinated by their own elected GM in order to have a fair and democratic system in the office. This ensures that people, including the GM, will have an equal amount of pay as well as every worker becoming more motivated and less likely to become frustrated with an incompetent or autocratic style of management. The workers will also have the ability to collectively decide on major decisions that could affect the factory or company as a whole. An example of a major buisness is the Mondragon corporation situated in Spain. This large co-op conglomerate has been a model for many other co-ops and has encouraged the spawn of many other co-ops; it is now also the tenth largest corporation in Spain, so this project is centered and is partly based on the corporations own successful buisness model, which can be used to spread out the wealth and close out the inequality gap. The project is to encourage other buisnesses to adopt this method to contribute to a more fair and more equal society. This can be done through massive campaigns and a large outreach programmes that could inform the large majority of the population to become more aware of this type of leadership structure instead of the standard and autocratic one. Indeed, brochures, guidebooks, online forum posts, videos explaining the method, ads, local speeches and lectures, and many more could assist the effort, and many national organizations have already exist to support this growing transition from traditional industries to worker co-ops. But efforts have proven to be slow and arduous. Therefore, the transition requires a catalyst made up by a coalition of entrepreneurs to exponentially grow the rate of worker co-ops being established and a rebranding of worker co-ops to appeal as a more sustainable and a more professional alternative than the traditional style of corporation.

Comments:

Fish S. Peace First Staff
19 October 2017 8:42

Hi Ezaridho! First, are you under 25, or 25+? This helps us determine how we can support your work.

Second -- this seems like a really incredible project! Thanks for sharing it with us. I think you've identified a great injustice -- inequality -- and it's great that you're thinking about how to provide resources to one of the community solutions that's arisen in response.

What challenges are you facing? Where do you need support? And what have you done so far to encourage the co-op method?