What’s Socialism Got to
do With It?:
Cooperatives as an
Alternative in Economic Development
by Steven Saus, Wright
matter. The public perception of cooperatives is one of funky food
stores frequented by neo-hippies and other fringe members of society.
Inner cities are seen as being in irreversible decline - as places
where poverty, crime, and unemployment congregate, more Grand Theft
Auto than Sesame Street. Regional economic planners believe they are
faced with a trade-off between helping current residents of their
cities or attracting high-skill, high-wage jobs. All of these
perceptions may be false.
Cooperatives can be
dynamic agencies for change, allowing economic developers to invest in
current residents while achieving economic goals. This paper covers the
methods that cooperatives can address market failures and produce
positive social externalities. It will outline the shape of local
government involvement and mechanisms for adapting current methods of
development funding towards encouraging cooperatives. Finally, it will
briefly examine the potential pitfalls - both real and rhetorical - of
cooperatives as an economic development tool.
the full paper here
as a PDF.
This paper was presented at the 2007
Bowling Green State University Undergraduate Economics Paper Contest
and Conference. The slideshow is available here
(flash), my accompanying notes for the presentation are here.
text of this work is original, and is copyrighted under a Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs
Creative Commons license