Cooperative Social Enterprise vs Corporate Consolidation

When it comes to ensuring the provision of goods and services, it is the economic expectation that value comes from demand, and the better you are at meeting that demand, the more value is made. Yet supply chains are increasingly being captured in their entirety in private investment buy-ups, leaving whole industries such as care homes, funeral homes, real estate, childcare, medical services, family farms and supermarkets monopolised in local areas and manipulated to maximise profit over provision.[1]

The biggest danger, however, comes from those who are dependent on these services. Whether it’s food, care or housing, portfolios of businesses managed by a singular entity are not recognised by monopolisation regulations[2], allowing them to draw government backed loans, subsidies and financial assistance designed to prevent the loss of essential services by raising the prices of necessities such as rent, pharmaceutical prescriptions and transportation, siphoning off money and leaving those dependent on their care or goods reliant on the barest of services.[3]

Perhaps due to this, more local services are being taken back by their communities and managed as co-operatives. A highly democratic system which in turn gives its members more control over the service they’re provided, cooperatives have proven themselves to be equal (and in many cases higher) efficiency alternatives to private and investment controlled services.[4] With cooperative run banks proving themselves to have high stability and fast recovery, even during financial crisis[5], and 80% of cooperative run businesses surviving past their fifth year as opposed to 40% of other business types[6], the very nature of their own self-reliance and dedication to their communities and members, cooperatives (and cooperative networks working together) provide a sustainable way for struggling and dependent communities to bring themselves back to joint prosperity for the long term.

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Search terms for your own research: cooperative commitments, private equity regulation, sustainable business structures

 Community Supported Agriculture, Community Dashboards

 Opportunity Isolation, Low Wage Jobs
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