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Saturday, April 27 • 10:15am - 11:15am
1. Worker Cooperatives as Wealth-Building Institutions in Low-Income Communities in the US

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Worker Cooperatives as Wealth-Building Institutions in Low-Income Communities in the US
Adam Johnson
Faculty mentor: Mark Paul
New College of Florida

Worker cooperatives are enterprises structured to be democratically owned and managed by their workers. The co-op's unique equity structure fundamentally shifts the incentives of a business towards its workers' needs and wants, supplanting the profit motive. This labor-oriented structure eliminates a primary root cause of poverty and wealth inequality: the role of the capitalist as an extractor of wealth within the workplace. The ability of cooperatives to reduce poverty and build wealth is well documented within the current literature, but this research is scattered throughout different areas of community development and worker experiences. This paper concentrates the economic theory behind the cooperative’s wealth-building capabilities with a lens from the low-income communities that need those benefits the most. After discussing theory, some public policy strategies for how to best encourage the growth of the cooperative economy are explored.

Adam Johnson is a sophomore from New College of Florida who is concentrating in Sociology and Political Science. He has a specific interest in growing the worker cooperative movement as he hopes to work within the labor movement in some way after graduation.

Speakers

Saturday April 27, 2019 10:15am - 11:15am EDT
HSB 201