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Mar 28 14

On Co-op newsletter March 25, 2014

by Karen Neufeldt


On Co-op News
VOLUME 10, ISSUE 21  March 25, 2014


  • On Co-op Connects with Conferences in Ottawa and Sudbury
  •  Community CarShare to Launch in London May 1st
  • Join Us For CDF’s Gala Dinner October 3rd
  • The Co-operators Partners With Habitat For Humanity
  • The Mustard Seed Receives funding From Ontario Local Food Fund
  • Strathcona Community Council Shines Light on Hamilton Co-ops
  • Rural Summit To Tackle Economic Topics
  • Registration Open For 30th Annual Directors’ Forum
  • CYL 2.0 Seeks Facilitators For Summer 2014 Program
  • On Co-op AGM and Provincial Roundtable Set for June 12th
  • Kingston Community Credit Union Returns Profits to its Members

Read a copy at the Ontario Co-operative Association website

Mar 26 14

Norm Bromberger Research Bursary of $2,000 – Applications due June 30, 2014

by Heather Acton

thumb tackThe application deadline for the annual Norm Bromberger Research Bursary of $2,000 is June 30, 2014.

 The Norm Bromberger Research Bursary was established in recognition of the outstanding contributions made by Norm Bromberger to the development of credit unions and co-operatives in Saskatchewan and across Canada. Bromberger was Research Director and the Chief Executive Officer of Credit Union Central for a total of 27 years of service within the credit union system of Saskatchewan. The bursary encourages research in the area of co-operatives and credit unions.

Find details about the bursary and download the application form here.

Feb 4 14

Announcing a Change in Directorship

by Heather Acton
Murray Fulton, Centre Fellow

Murray Fulton

 Murray Fulton has been appointed director of the Centre for the Study of Co-operatives for a five-year term, effective January 1, 2014. Murray has been a fellow of the Centre since its inception in 1984 and served as director from 1995 to 2000. He is currently a professor in the Johnson-Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy.

With degrees from the University of California, University of Oxford, Texas A&M University, and the University of Saskatchewan, Murray has research and teaching interests in a number of areas, including industrial organization, agricultural industry analysis, co-operative theory and community development. He is the co-author of a number of books and reports and has written numerous articles and papers on industrial organization, co-operatives, and agricultural policy. Murray has worked on research projects for the Economic Council of Canada and has served as a consultant to the Saskatchewan government and the Federal/Provincial Task Force on the Role of Co-operatives and Government in Community Development. Most recently, he was part of a team of faculty from the university to be awarded $1M from Federated Co-operatives Limited to explore co-operative business development in rural and Aboriginal communities.

Lou Hammond Ketilson

Lou Hammond Ketilson

 We thank Lou Hammond Ketilson for her vital contribution to the ongoing success of the Centre during her more than nine years as director, and are pleased that she will continue her involvement with the Centre as a Fellow in Co-operative Management. Lou has continuing responsibilities as the lead of two large research projects: a 2010–15 initiative on the impact of co-operatives and credit unions in Canada funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, and a 2013–16 project on sustainable rural development in Africa funded by the International Development Research Centre. Both are in partnership with the Canadian Co-operative Association.

Jan 16 14

Calls for Papers

by Heather Acton

CALL FOR PAPERS — 2014 International Summit of Co-operatives
Quebec City, October 6–9

Authors and researchers are invited to submit proposals for empirical or theoretical articles. Selected articles will be compiled, published, and made available to Summit participants. Researchers will also have an opportunity to present their research results.

Solicited Research Themes
Proposals must be linked to the Summit’s main theme, Cooperatives’ Power of Innovation, and one of the five following sub-themes:

  1. Developing cooperative and mutual businesses
  2. Financing and capitalization for cooperatives and mutuals
  3. Food security through cooperatives and mutuals
  4. Access to health and social care services through cooperatives and mutuals
  5. Solutions to the global employment crisis offered by cooperatives and mutuals

Selected contributions must further discussions, encourage reflection, and help identify solutions to address the development and performance challenges facing cooperatives and mutuals.

Special attention will be paid to research carried out in the past year. While the committee is primarily looking for new articles, it will also consider articles already published in journals whose circulation is limited to one country. In this way, local contributions can
be made available to an international readership.

The articles will be published in French, English, and Spanish.

Technical Information

•   Submitted articles, including bibliography, cannot exceed 30,000 characters (excluding spaces).
•   Papers must include a 150-word maximum abstract in French, English, and Spanish.

Send complete paper and submission form to by February 15, 2014, at 10:00 p.m. EST.

For more information and submission guidelines, refer to the Summit website.

CALL FOR PAPERS — 2014 CASC Conference, Brock University, May 26–29

The Canadian Association for Studies in Co-operation (CASC) has issued its Call for Papers for the 2014 CASC conference, which will take place at Brock University from May 26 to 29.

This year’s conference will explore the way in which co-operatives innovate as they move across borders, break down barriers, and expand boundaries.

CASC is inviting potential participants to submit proposals that in some way reflect ways of “co-operating across borders.” This could mean across the boundaries of geography, sector, community, academic discipline, theoretical frameworks, demographics, and/or industry.

The deadline for submitting proposals is January 20, 2014.

Click here for more information.


Two international journals are joining forces for a special issue on co-operative governance and are seeking submissions.

The special issue of the International Journal of Co-operative Management and the Journal of Co-operative Accounting and Reporting will be edited by Sonja Novkovic, an economics professor at Saint Mary’s University and chair of the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA) Committee on Co-operative Research.

The theme of the issue will be “Co-operative Governance: A Critical Approach.” Critical articles on both co-operative governance challenges and best practices will be welcome.

The deadline for submissions is March 1, 2014.

Click here (PDF) for more information.

Jan 16 14

Meet our Newest PhD Student – Cam McCormick

by Heather Acton

Cameron (Cam) McCormick
completed his Bachelor of Commerce at the University of Alberta in 2003 with a major in marketing and a minor in organizational analysis. He finished his Master of Science (Management) degree from the University of Lethbridge in 2011, where his focal area was policy and strategy. His thesis title was Get Mad, Stay Mad: Exploring Stakeholder Mobilization in the Instance of Corporate Fraud and Ponzi Schemes, in which he developed new ideas and a theory for stakeholder mobilization and engagement.

Cam’s PhD will revolve around how nonprofit organizations and co-operatives engage stakeholders through corporate social responsibility programs and building community.  It is Cam’s belief that social enterprises and co-operatives are the natural evolution of sustainable capitalism, and studying at the Centre for the Study of Co-operatives will facilitate that.

Cam currently lives in a housing co-operative in Edmonton with his wife, Krista (a pediatric music therapist), 5-year-old son, Sloane, 2-year-old daughter, Mahlia, and his family is expecting a new member this May. Cam is a member of the board of directors for the Northern Alberta Co-operative Housing Association and, in addition, is the vice-president of the Edmonton Folk Music Festival. This will be his 22nd year volunteering and co-ordinating the event.

Jan 16 14

Accolades for Dr. Gayle Broad

by Heather Acton

Gayle BroadCongratulations to Dr. Gayle Broad, a most deserving recipient of the 2013 Sault Ste. Marie Medal of Merit.

Gayle is an Associate Professor at Algoma University and Director of Research at the NORDIK Institute based in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. In 2012 she was presented with the Distinguished Faculty Award in recognition of her promotion of Algoma University’s institutional mission and vision, and in 2013 she received the Research Matters award from the Council of Ontario Universities.

Gayle was instrumental in developing the Community Economic and Social Development (CESD) four-year degree program and, to address the demand for community-based research, she led the establishment of the NORDIK Institute as an incorporated, non-profit organization affiliated with Algoma University.

Gayle was significantly involved with our 6-year, SSHRC-funded social economy project, Linking, Learning, Leveraging: Social Enterprises, Knowledgeable Economies & Sustainable Communities. You will find many research reports for which she was the principal investigator at our Social Economy Project website. Of particular note is her work in exploring the strengths of Indigenous communities and the social economy of Northern Ontario.

Her contributions associated with peer-reviewed publications, book chapters, research reports, and public presentations have raised the visibility of Algoma University’s CESD program. Training provided by Dr. Broad through her CESD faculty position, NORDIK initiatives, and community and academic workshops has provided meaningful opportunities to champion economic and social change in Northern Ontario.

Congratulations, Gayle, from all of us at the Centre.

Read the full press release.

Jan 16 14

Centre Seminar – Monday, February 10 – 3:30

by Heather Acton

Centre for the Study of Co-operatives Seminar Series 2013–14

Marc Schneiberg

Professor of Sociology
Reed College, Portland

Fates of Co-operative and Mutual Enterprise Systems in the Neoliberal Era: Mutual Bank Conversions to Stock Corporations in the US

Monday, February 10, 2014
3:30–4:30 pm
Prairie Room, Diefenbaker Building
U of S Campus

Get directions

Reception to follow in the River Room.

This seminar will also be videocast in Regina in the JSGS Window Room, 2nd Floor, Gallery Building, U of R, College Avenue Campus.

Individuals in Regina with mobility difficulties should contact us at 306.966.8506 or at least one week prior to the event.

How have systems of co-operative, mutual, local, and state-owned enterprises fared in the US in the face of financialization and the “victory of the market” during the late twentieth century? Have alternatives to investor-owned corporations been able to retain their distinctive identities, mission, and form? This presentation addresses these questions by analyzing the fates and forms of savings and loan associations in the US, enterprises organized almost exclusively as depositor-owned mutual companies.

Beginning in the 1970s, mutual associations faced increasingly powerful pressures to embrace the market and abandon their traditional forms and community orientation. Many succumbed to the call of the market by converting to for-profit stock corporations. But others remained committed to serving the community and the mutual form. The differences rested on the social structural and organizational contexts within which savings and loan associations operated. Local embeddedness and the presence of particular kinds of social and organizational communities helped sustain mutualism in the face of market pressures, highlighting continuing possibilities for co-operativism and economic diversity in the age of neoliberalism.

Marc Schneiberg is the John C. Pock Professor of Sociology at Reed College, editor of the Socio-Economic Review, and consulting editor of Sociological Science. His research explores the emergence, contemporary fates, and economic consequences of organizational diversity and alternatives to corporations in American capitalism, focusing on co-operative, mutual, local, state-owned, and community-based enterprises in insurance, banking, electricity, and agriculture. His research appears in journals such as Politics and Society, American Sociological Review, American Journal of Sociology, Organizational Studies, Socio-Economic Review, Seattle University Law Review, and Research in the Sociology of Organizations.

Jan 16 14

Job Posting for a Data Analyst

by Heather Acton


Application Deadline:  January 28, 2014, at 4:30pm

Complete Job Posting – Data Analyst

This is a term position for up to one year with a strong possibility of extension.

The Data Analyst will work closely with the Project Director of the Project Management Group to coordinate data collection, synthesis and analysis to support research-based decisions to inform the design and implementation of an innovative model and plan for co-operative development in rural and Aboriginal communities in western Canada. The Data Analyst will make recommendations on appropriate research methodologies, and will clearly delineate the type of information required to support project-wide decisions. The Data Analyst will also ensure that appropriate reporting models are developed to provide timely, easy-to-understand progress reports and research-based recommendations to the Project Director and Project Management Group. Finally, the Data Analyst will communicate research methodology and results to key stakeholder groups as appropriate and under the direction of the Project Director.

Required Skills: Applied and/or academic research and data analysis. Proficiency in working with reporting and/or data analysis tools for the purpose of designing and developing reports that provide information to users in an effective manner; ability to work well in a collaborative team-based environment; working knowledge of Microsoft Access; the ability to accurately understand and/or convey technical information to non-technical staff; proficient analytical, research, organizational and problem-solving skills; ability to think creatively and identify innovative solutions; aptitude for researching and understanding data; ability to acquire new skills in a timely manner.

See the complete job posting.

Jan 16 14

New Publication – Proceedings from the Co-operating to Build a Better West Conference, 2012

by Heather Acton

BBW Report Cover

The Centre has recently published Co-operating to Build a Better West: Proceedings of a Conference Celebrating the 2012 United Nations International Year of Co-operatives Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, 1–3 November 2012, a report prepared by Sugandhi del Canto and Nora Russell, 2013.

In addition to information about the special features of the conference this publication incluldes abstracts for each of the presentations.

Download the report here (pdf).

Nov 22 13

Centre for the Study of Co-operatives Remembers Ian MacPherson

by Heather Acton

Ian MacPhersonAlong with the rest of the international co-operative movement, the Centre is mourning the loss of one of the world’s great co-operative citizens, Dr. Ian MacPherson, who died suddenly on 16 November in Victoria. Many words could describe Ian and his life-long commitment to co-operatives — visionary, idealistic, passionate, caring, scholar, and mentor. He was a great co-operative thinker, researcher, writer, and co-op guru to many of us.

Ian made unparalleled contributions to the co-operative movement worldwide, both as an academic and as a practitioner. He was one of the world’s leading authorities on co-operative history, authoring and editing over 20 books and writing more than 120 academic and 70 non-academic papers. His most recent book, Co-operative Enterprises Build a Better World (with Terry MacDonald and Greg Wallace) was released yesterday.

Born in 1939 in Toronto, Ian spent much of his youth in rural Ontario and delighted in telling stories of life-lessons learned from these quiet farming communities. He also felt a great affinity for the Canadian prairies and the depth of co-operative history to be found there. He taught at both the universities of Winnipeg and Victoria, where he achieved distinction in all areas of endeavour, though his greatest contributions at the university were perhaps as a teacher. A talented lecturer who always knew how to engage his audience, Ian was a supportive mentor and supervisor to innumerable junior faculty and students over the years; he was always generous with his time and insightful with his comments.

Ian had a true love for the field of co-operative studies, and he worked tirelessly in support of establishing it as a legitimate academic discipline. He played an instrumental role in many organizations: the BC Institute for Co-operative Studies, the Canadian Association for Studies in Co-operation, the ICA Committee on Co-operative Research, the Canadian Co-operative Association, the Co-operative Initiative for Peace and Social Inclusion, and the virtual Co-operative Learning Centre, to mention just a few.

A recipient of many deserving awards, Ian also played a leadership role in the co-op sector for over forty years, serving on numerous boards, including consumer, health, and childcare co-ops, as well as several credit unions.

Ian was humble, compassionate, warm, and funny, with a larger-than-life personality and a huge love of life, of people, and of ideas. We have lost a great co-operator and a wonderful human being, but one who has left an important legacy, through his prodigious writings, through the creation of institutions to carry on his work, through the many boards on which he served, and through his personal imprint on the very “Statement of the Co-operative Identity,” the 1995 revisions to the co-op principles. Ian wrote the document that defines how the world understands co-operatives in the twenty-first century. The world is a much better place because of Ian. He will be sorely missed.


We wish to acknowledge the contributions of the Executive of the ICA Committee on Co-operative Research, the Canadian Association for Studies in Co-operation, and the Saskatchewan Co-operative Association to the content of this tribute.