CoTech members and types of co-ops

Hi folks,

Do we have something containing our members and in what way they’re a co-op? The discussion about GreenNet joining CoTech highlighted uncertainty around the current membership criteria and I’m interested to understand what types of co-op we already have as members.

Cheers, Chris

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We have the list of the 26 member co-ops, perhaps we could add a field to the site for co-op type? What would that list contain?

  • Workers Co-op
  • Multi-Stakeholder Co-op

There must be other types?

It could also have the legal entity and perhaps even a URL for the registration page? For example:

  • Name: Webarch Co-operative Limited
  • Type: Multi-Stakeholder Co-operative
  • Legal form: Co-operative Society

But given that not all the 26 co-ops have filled in their co-ordinates to enable a marker on the map perhaps that would be asking too much…?

Perhaps a session at Wortley Hall could be on improving the coops.tech site content?

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Also perhaps Freelancer co-op

I created a table on the wiki to list the members of CoTech and their legal form and type, it would be great if people could help fill in the blanks :slight_smile:

Great stuff. Thanks, Chris.

I’ve updated Go Free Range’s entry in that table. Doing so makes me wonder
whether we’re missing something, though. I’ve added us as a Worker co-op
with a legal form of a Company limited by shares. While I would argue that
these are both true, I also understand that our current articles of
association are not fully compatible with the ICA’s 7 principles (although
we’re working on this). Is there some additional information we can capture
that would highlight this discrepancy (between how we describe ourselves
and our company documents)?

Cheers, Chris

@chrisroos thanks for adding the details, feel free to add a “Notes” column to link to a footnote for this info, or something?

@chrisroos a worker co-op (employee or consortium of self-employed workers) can take a number of legal forms; my view is that it is the relationship between the members and shared purpose/aspiration that determines whether it’s a co-op and what type of co-op it is, rather than the legal form. That said, a CLS can’t really be common ownership, although if the members agree to put money aside for the purpose it can fulfil the principle that co-ops will usually have some kind of ‘indivisible reserve’. Co-ops UK has a model rule for a worker co-op CLS - https://www.uk.coop/sites/default/files/uploads/attachments/worker_co-operative_cls_0.pdf - might be worth comparing yours with that!

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Indeed. There is no single legal definition of what a co-op is under UK law. 1976 common ownership act was nearest. Other countries have strict rules.

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The list of CoTech co-ops on the website isn’t up to date (45 co-ops are listed but I think we have 50 members) and also that isn’t a suitable place record organisations that are former members, so I have added two of these to the membership table on the wiki and updated it (I counted seven co-ops that are CoTech members and not listed on the public site).

Dare I suggest that we could do with having a Membership Secretary and a Register of Members?

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It would definitely be useful, we are now looking to contact co-ops in regards to the upcoming mini-gathering and realising we might be missing some co-ops… Would you like to add the register thread as a Thursday morning session @chris ?