Platform Cooperativism Resource Library


Worker cooperatives are businesses that are owned and governed democratically by their workers, on a one-member, one-vote basis. Unlike a traditional business, in which ownership and control is separate from and often antagonistic to the workers who create value for the firm, a worker cooperative provides for both democratic ownership of the workplace, with each worker holding an equal interest in the business, and democratic governance, with each worker able to cast an equal vote in key decisions. A spectrum of management practices lays behind this basic institutional design. Many worker cooperatives, especially smaller ones, embrace more horizontal and directly democratic forms of self-management. Others, especially larger ones, use more traditional, hierarchical management structures that are embedded within systems of oversight that give workers the power to elect the company’s board and vote on the largest and most important business decisions.

Added October 11, 2019