Co-Ops and Mutuals: Hiding in Plain Sight

Co-Ops and Mutuals: Hiding in Plain Sight via Zoom

Thursday - 19 August, 2021 - 06:00 PM

Online - A Zoom link will be forwarded on RSVP - Victoria, Australia


From Mondragon to Cleveland to Preston to Bendigo

Most of us are members of a Co-operative or Mutual Enterprise (CME) but aren’t aware of it. They are “hiding in plain sight.” We have little publicity or educational focus on these enterprises, and the CME model is relatively unknown amongst people seeking to build new enterprises. Many in the corporate sector do not think there is room for other models of organisational ownership demonstrated by CME's.

Yet organisational ownership does influence corporate behaviour. No customer-owned bank or credit union was brought before the Royal Commission into financial institutions. And workers in CMEs typically do not experience the levels of income inequality common in other sectors. There are many innovative co-operatives that operate here locally, including those involved with the development of renewable energy technology.

Join us at this event to hear what the co-operative model can offer in a more inclusive and socially focussed economy.


Introduction by Greg Patmore who is Emeritus Professor of Business and Labour History at the University of Sydney.  He is Chair of the Business and Labour History Group and the Co-operative Research Group (CRG) in the School of Business.

Antony McMullen is Co-founder and Director of Co-operative Bonds. He is a Melbourne-based cooperative entrepreneur and expert in co-op development, policy and enterprise for common good.

Joanne McNeill is an Associate Professor at Griffith University. Her research interests include: social innovation eco-systems; community economies; alternative economic organising; social impact; networks and partnerships; community capability building; social enterprise; and cooperatives.

Ian McBurney is an ecological sustainability practitioner, facilitator, MC and educator.  He also assists large businesses to make the transition to sustainability.

Event Format

This event is now online via zoom only as the formerly planned face to face event at the Kelvin Club wont proceed due to COVID restrictions. A link to join the Zoom event will be forwarded via email upon RSVP and prior to the event.

All welcome to stay for our 'online pub' after the event:

This is an effort to maintain the social aspect of our face to face events, especially for those in lockdown. So come prepared with your own BYO drink and nibbles for the after event discussion. We encourage all members to switch on video at the event to improve sociability.






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