Cooperatives and the “Bolivarian Revolution” in Venezuela

This article looks at the vibrant cooperative movement within the context of the “Bolivarian Revolution” in Venezuela. While the cooperatives represent one of the most encouraging signs of radical democratic potential in Venezuela, there are conflicting
trajectories within the country that make the future of the “Bolivarian Revolution” unclear. This paper argues that the cooperative movement can only be sustainable and transformative of Venezuelan capitalism if it is integrated into a larger project of
economic democracy.

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Praxis, Learning, and New Cooperativism in Venezuela: An Initial Look at Venezuela’s Socialist Production Units

In this paper, I address the question as to the extent to which the participatory and democratic processes taking place as part ofVenezuela's new cooperative movement can be said to be a component for the building of social relations that challenge those of capitalism. I begin with a discussion of praxis and learning. Then, I attempt to situate the role of cooperatives and the participation therein within the context of capitalism. read more »

Commons and Cooperatives

An examination of the worker cooperative as an example of a labour commons. The authors suggest that the radical potential of co-ops can be extended by connecting with other commons struggles.

In the last decade, the commons has become a prevalent theme in discussions about collective but decentralized control over resources. This paper is a preliminary exploration of the potential linkages between commons and cooperatives through a discussion of the worker cooperative as one example of a labour commons.
We view the worker coop as a response at once antagonistic and accommodative to capitalism. This perspective is amplified through a consideration of five aspects of an ideal-type worker cooperativism: associated labour, workplace democracy, surplus distribution, cooperation among cooperatives, and, controversially, links between worker cooperatives and socialist states. We conclude by suggesting that the radical potential of worker cooperatives might be extended, theoretically and practically, by elaborating connections with other commons struggles in a process we term the circulation of the common. read more »

The Cooperative Movement in Century 21

The cooperative movement was one of the first social movements of modern times, with roots at the beginning of the industrial revolution, and was an integral part of the early labour movement. read more »

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