The Graduate Certificate in the Social Economy, Co-operatives, and Nonprofit Sector (GSECN)

JSGS 846: Cooperatives in the New Economy Institutions Governance and Policy

The Graduate Certificate in the Social Economy, Co-operatives, and Nonprofit Sector (GSECN) is designed for mid-career professionals interested in improving their understanding of the third sector.  

There is a rich diversity of third-sector organizations—co-operatives, credit unions, non-profits, charities, community associations, social enterprises, and more—working alongside the public and private sectors to provide goods and services to individuals and communities. Some of these organizations, such as locally-owned financial services and grocery providers, have operated for decades. Others are relatively new and work in areas ranging from renewable energy to affordable and supported housing, to mental health and addictions, and more. However, they all share a commitment to inclusive decision-making and concern about larger social-economic problems. 

The GSECN is offered in partnership with the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy.

NOTICE: After completing one online foundational course (JSGS 846), you will have the option to specialize in one of three possible streams (1) Non-Profit stream, (2) Co-operative stream, or the (3) Social Economy and Government stream. Both the Non-Profit and Co-operative streams can be completed entirely online, while the Social Economy and Government stream is offered through a combination of online and in-person classes. 

If you are interested in the Social Economy and Government stream and live outside of Regina or Saskatoon, please contact the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School about options that may be available to you. 

Learning Objectives

Comprised of three graduate-level classes, the certificate covers a range of topics and issues, including: 

  • Organizational forms in the social economy sector (including co-operatives, nonprofits, social enterprises and more); 
  • Principles of good governance in the social economy; 
  • Management and leadership excellence; 
  • The interplay between the social economy and public policy; 
  • Emerging forms of sector-led initiatives and inter-organizational governance; and 
  • Public and community engagement strategies. 

Click here for a complete list of courses, admission requirements and more. 


For more information, please contact:

Amy Hassett, Manager, Graduate Programs (On-site delivery)
Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy
University of Saskatchewan
142-101 Diefenbaker Place
Saskatoon, SK, S7N 5B8
Phone: 306-966-1675

Heidi Eger, Academic Advisor 
Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy 
University of Regina campus 
2155 College Avenue, College Avenue Campus 
Regina, SK, S4S 0A2 
Phone: 306-585-5469 

Master of Public Policy

The Master of Public Policy is taught through the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy. The program offers courses on co-operatives as well as the possibility of a thesis on a co-operative topic. For a program description, qualifications, course information, fee schedule, and information about the internship option, click here.

Application information and deadlines here.

PhD in Public Policy

The PhD in Public Policy is offered through the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy. Like the Master's degree, the PhD offers the possibility of participating in co-operative courses as well as choosing a dissertation topic focussed on co-operative organizations. For a description of the program, application qualifications, course requirements, and information about tuition, funding, and exams, click here

You can find the application information and deadlines for this program here

Interdisciplinary Concentration in Co-operative Studies

A third option is the Interdisciplinary Concentration in Co-operative Studies, available through the College of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. Students in this program undertake graduate studies and research with an interdisciplinary cohort of faculty who share a common research interest. Students who are part of a concentration are enrolled as graduate students in the Interdisciplinary Program and receive a Master's or PhD in Interdisciplinary Studies.

Information about the Interdisciplinary Program can be found here.

Students interested in pursuing a Master's or PhD in the Co-operative Studies Concentration should contact the Centre Director.