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Co-operatives Research Unit

Co-operative Projects

CIRIEC project on co-operative strategies for competing in global contexts involved about 10 countries in an international comparison of experience in the financial services and agro-food businesses. The result has been published (in French) by CIRIEC International in Liege (the same people that publish the Annals of Public and Co-operative Economics).

Third System and Employment, 15 country study funded by EC, 1998-2000. Another CIRIEC project on the Third System and Employment drew on the work of partners in every country in Europe, to map the social economy and analyse its relation to employment. The project was funded by the European commission and the results were published in 2000. See:

A research project on the Co-operative Advantage, commissioned by the Society for Co-operative Studies, was coordinated by CRU with partners Leicester University Management Centre and the Co-op College. The results were published in 2000, in a special issue of the Journal of Co-operative Studies, price £10, available from Frank Dent, Frank Dent, Society for Co-operative Studies, 18 Macclesfield Road, Buxton, Derbyshire SK17 9AH Tel: 01298 79277 (cheque payable to: Society of Co-op Studies).

Rita Rhodes who completed her Ph.D with CRU in the 90s, wrote a book based on her thesis, to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the ICA - 'The International Co-operative Alliance During War and Peace 1910-1950'. Rita is now a visiting research fellow in CRU, and recently completed an historical study of a major London Co-operative Society – published as "An Arsenal for Labour". She is currently working on a major historical study of the role of the Colonial Office in co-operative development in Africa and India.

Roger Spear has developed his international work by participating in a number of international working groups on social co-ops, voluntary organisations, and other social enterprises. He was made Chair of the ICA Research Committee in 1995, and as a result has helped to organise several international conferences: in Estonia in 1996, just outside Bologna in '97; an international workshop in Budapest during 1996, and an international conference in Cork in May '98; Quebec in 1999: Oslo, Singapore and Rio de Janeiro in 2000; and Gavle, Sweden, Seoul and Buenos Aires in 2001, and Thessaloniki in 2002.