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CICOPA Interview with CWCF President Alain Bridault (2010 CWCF March/April E-Newsletter)

Q: You’ve recently been elected president of the Canadian Worker Co-operative Federation (CWCF). Why was this important to you? A: It seemed essential to me to strengthen worker co-operatives in Quebec by joining the Quebec movement with the Canadian Worker Co-operative Federation.  Therefore, in 2007, I first convinced the Network of Worker Co-operatives of Quebec, of which my co-op is a member, to become a regional member of the Federation.  Being the representative of the Quebec Network to the CWCF, I was elected to CWCF’s Board of Directors.  I then convinced the Federation of Forestry Co-operatives in Quebec to also become a CWCF member.  I believe that since the Board of the CWCF quickly elected me to be vice president in 2008 and then president in 2009, it is a mark of recognition of the worker co-ops in Quebec since they are the largest number of worker co-ops of all…

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The Growth Factors of Worker Co-operatives – Interview with Bruno Roelants (2010 CWCF March/April E-Newsletter)

Bruno Roelants is the General Secretary of CICOPA (International Organisation of Industrial, Artisanal and Service Producers’ Co-operatives), which is the sectoral organization of the International Co-operative Alliance that promotes worker cooperatives. Headquartered in Brussels, Belgium, CICOPA has a membership of 57 national and regional cooperative federations in 39 countries. CWCF recently had the opportunity to interview Bruno Roelants. Q: Where are the largest worker co-op sectors? A: Italy and Spain are by far the largest. In Italy alone there are 800,000 workers in worker co-operatives, comprising tens of thousands of enterprises. France is the third highest with about 2,000 enterprises. Q: Where is there rapid growth? A: In Italy the growth is from social co-operatives, which have increased 30% in the last 5 years. Q: How do you explain the huge scale of the worker co-op movement in Italy and Spain? A: First, the worker co-op movements there have been large…

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The Co-operative Movement in the Next 100 Years: What are the Opportunities? The Challenges?

Ian MacPherson Professor Emeritus of History Co-director, the National Hub The Canadian Social Economy Research Partnerships The University of Victoria cluny1@uvic.ca Speech to Worker Co-operatives and Sustainable Development Canadian Worker Co-op Federation Vancouver October 2010 Video recording When Hazel Corcoran asked me to speak at this year’s meeting of the Federation, I was particularly honoured. One of my most pleasant co-op memories is the founding convention of the Canadian Worker Co-op Federation (CWCF) at Antigonish in April 1991. At that time, I was President of the Canadian Co-operative Association and I like to think that in that capacity I played a useful if modest role in helping make it possible. Most of all, though, I look back at that conference for its excitement, the kind of enthusiasm that often accompanies beginnings and formative periods within the co-operative movement. I also recall it for the depth of engagement by so many…

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