This month Red Pepper is joining forces with New Internationalist and Ethical Consumer magazines to host a one-day conference on the subject of co-operatives.
The event will see a number of interesting talks and lively debates on the issue of co-operatives and mutualism, under the heading ‘Is there a co-operative alternative to capitalism?’
Red Pepper editor Hilary Wainright, who is due to speak at the event, said, ‘This conference is a very timely opportunity to explore and discuss how to generalise an alternative model of production, when all around us we see the incapability of conventional capitalistic, private production failing to meet society’s needs and causing environmental disaster.
‘Co-operatives provide working models of a feasible alternative. How do we generalise from these micro experiences to a wider strategy of social transformation? That’s our collective challenge on 27 September.
‘From its beginnings, Red Pepper magazine has been covering the radical potential of co-ops, urging the left more generally to take seriously this historic legacy and this source of hope for the future.’
The event coincides with the launch of a new book of the same title, which is jointly published by Ethical Consumer and New Internationalist magazines.
Ethical Consumer editor Rob Harrison, also speaking at the event, said, ‘Scientists and academics are pointing to increasingly dangerous levels of climate and habitat destruction. Europe and America are facing their worst economic problems for a generation, and social movements around the world are calling for sweeping reforms.
‘We want to discuss the extent to which co-operatives offer an alternative model which could address some of these key issues.’
Further guest speakers include Ed Mayo (Secretary General – Co-operatives UK) and Paul Monaghan (Up the Ethics/Co-operative Energy), with more contributors to be confirmed.
The conference will address three main themes: Co-operatives, capitalism and climate change; Technology and open source co-ops; and making co-ops the dominant organisational model.
It takes place at the Amnesty International Human Rights Action Centre (25 New Inn Yard, EC2A, London) on Friday, 27 September from 12:00 to 19:00. It will end with a drinks reception and the book launch.
For more information visit Ethical Consumer.
By Nathan Thanki and Asad Rehman.
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