Resource Library

The Democracy at Work Institute is building a comprehensive Resource Library that will include a wide range of materials, including academic papers, start-up toolkits, curriculum samples, actual documents from existing worker cooperatives, and more. The topic list below provides a map of the resources that will be available. We are also continuing to publish additional resources on a daily basis.

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Recently Added Resources

The Communist Party in The Land of Cooperation

Matt Hancock
From 1945, until its transformation into the Left wing Democrats in 1989, the Italian Communist Party (PCI) effectively, and uninterruptedly, governed Emilia-Romagna. The Communists in Emilia were master's at building political hegemony. Their leadership style was relatively open and democratic. Local governments under the PCI became known around the world both for their efficiency and efficacy. In addition, the bold and creative economic policies of the PCI have been the object of study throughout the world.

Firm Foundations for Democracy? Worker Ownership and Control in Advanced Capitalism

Sanjay Pinto
To what extent do workers exert control within the workplace, and exercise voice in how the income generated by firms is distributed? And do they have ownership—not just in an affective sense, but in terms of share holdings or membership rights? The financial crisis opened up widespread discussion about prevailing modes of economic organization. But, for the most part, this discussion has been quite narrowly bounded, oscillating between two familiar poles. This paper tries to contribute to such a conversation by offering a macro-comparative backdrop.

Jobs and the Urban Poor: Privately Initiated Sectoral Strategies

Peggy Clark, Steven L. Dawson, Amy J. Kays, Frieda Molina, Rick Surpin
This research report looks at the experience of community-based organizations that have undertaken sectoral employment development strategies, and attempts to define these strategies and assess their impact. It's purpose is is to spread the idea that the poor can participate in the competitive economy, to illuminate the practice of using a single industry or occupation to create jobs and economic opportunity for the poor, and to promote the concept that poverty alleviation is linked to economic development.

Does Cooperation Equal Utopia?

By means of qualitative analysis, this paper examines the organisational cultures underlying three worker cooperatives in the San Francisco Bay Area. 20 workers were interviewed and the transcripts were subsequently analysed along Edgar Schein's cultural framework. The findings show that overall the culture of these worker cooperatives is people-centred: the wellbeing of the workers comes first and the concern for making a profit comes only second.