May 8, 2021
Constructing a democratic workplace is similar to building a house. Both require a solid structure and ongoing attention. Just as a building won’t stand without four corner posts, neither will the workplace. If you want to create the fullest expression of democracy and the fullest productive potential for business success, all four corner posts must be strong. The four corner posts of a democratic workplace are:         Power: Power can mean workers’ power to voice opinions and contribute... more
September 25, 2020
Photo Credit: New Economy Coalition The cooperative community has lost a tremendous spirit this week with the passing of Elandria Williams, a visionary agitator and unparalleled educator. Elandria was an immense force within the new economy space - a huge, joyous spirit and a powerful organizer who served in so many capacities -- from the Highlander Center, to the PeoplesHub, to the founding board of The Democracy at Work Institute.  We are forever grateful for Elandria’s contributions to the... more
July 1, 2020
      By Todd Leverette and Philip Reeves The murder of George Floyd and the heroic actions of movement organizers have once again exposed the social fragility created by this nation’s racist underpinnings. In an almost-poetic economic parallel, the Coronavirus pandemic has exposed decades of economic policy and investment practice that have left American workers, especially workers of color, with stagnant wages, declining wealth and little to no economic security.  As the government struggles... more
March 25, 2020
    The following is a letter from Cooperative Home Care Associates and Opportunity Threads to build support for frontline worker -owners responding to COVID-19.   Dear Cooperators,   We need your help.  These are unprecedented times and difficult for all of our communities.  Adria Powell (president and CEO of Cooperative Home Care Associates) and I are working to try and get home care workers protective surgical masks. Our health care workers are on the front lines and many are having to work... more
March 20, 2020
    Hello, partners and supporters of Democracy at Work Institute:   We hope you are keeping well and healthy in all ways, as the COVID-19/coronavirus changes our lives and work, and as we wait to see how transmission will be contained in the U.S. Because so much of DAWI’s work is connected to other organizations, we are updating partners to share how we have been and are likely to be affected. We hope this assessment and mitigation of risk fortifies all our resilience in unprecedented times.... more
December 20, 2019
New Belgium Brewing helped build the burgeoning craft beer market by shaping best practices in it: a quality product, consistent innovation, ethics and sustainability at the fore — and employee ownership at the core.    Employee-owned companies have had an outsized role in building the market for craft beers, the same hot market that eventually gobbled up New Belgium.    Click here to read Melissa Hoover's take on what we can learn from the New Belgium Sale, published on Fifty by Fifty... more
December 3, 2019
By Rebecca Bauen, Director of Education and Training   Democracy at Work Institute, in partnership with Rutgers University School of Management and Labor Relations, recently hosted a five-day Certificate in Participatory Management for managers and worker-owners from across the country. The partnership represented the evolution of DAWI's work to support the development of stronger worker-owned and worker-managed businesses throughout the U.S.   Thirty-three participants from across the... more
September 18, 2019
  By Rebecca Bauen, Director of Education and Training   The worker co-op, employee ownership, and community investment world lost a giant this summer with the passing of Sherman Kreiner in Winnipeg.  He died of leukemia, complicated by fibromyalgia, after a long hard fight.   In the l980's, Sherman supported his wife Cindy Coker, and Teresa Mansell, the co-founders of Childspace in Philadelphia, to structure their worker cooperative using an innovative non-profit/coop hybrid.  This is after... more
March 22, 2018
“While it’s wonderful to think that family members will take over the business – this doesn’t always happen,” said Small Business House Committee Ranking Member Rep. Nydia M. Velázquez. “It is anticipated that many of these businesses will be bought by a rival, while others will be forced to close altogether, leaving empty Main Streets and hard-hit local economies. I am pleased that the bill we passed will help empower employees to become owners in their companies.”    At DAWI, we know that... more
November 19, 2017
The latest State of the Sector report by the Democracy at Work Institute and U.S. Federation of Worker Cooperatives covers research on worker-owned enterprises through 2015. Three years into surveying worker cooperatives on a national scale, we are positioned to analyze stability and change—demographically, and in terms of business performance, wages, and benefits. Download the report here