In recent weeks many of the features of the market economy have collapsed and global supply chains are at breaking point. The British state is paying the furloughed wages of millions as the cash crisis necessitating austerity – an ideological position – has disappeared.

Western countries are considering forms of universal basic income with the distinction between public and private collapsing. Those previously not allowed to work from home have been transformed into a new mass of teleworkers, as video conferencing and remote working take over our work and social lives.

Food scarcity from just-in-time culture has brought empty shelves and fear to many and there is no normal anymore. At last, low socioeconomic status professions such as caring, refuse collection, logistics and retail working have become recognised for the real social and economic value that they bring. 

In amidst all this disruption, educational possibilities have been created. Existing courses have been moved online, schoolchildren have been sent home to design their own timetables, curricula, and learning and even the most reluctant professors have been forced to try new things, using technology to provide teaching.

For co-operative educators, researchers and learners, urgent questions are being posed: 

  • What does the COVID crisis for mean for co-operative or radical education?
  • How do we think about this period of crisis?
  • What does the translation to online learning mean for power, hierarchy and affect? 
  • How do we adapt, respond, change our scholarly, pedagogic and other educational practices (how do we ‘do education and learning’) in the light of the new and transformed learning environments? 

We invite co-operators, radical educators and learners to reflect on their experiences and practices for the first issue of this new zine. Please send:  

  1. Personal reflections on what this means for co-operative and other radical learning 

    • What is your lived experience as an educator or learner? What are you learning just now? About yourself, about others? 
    • What are you doing now that is different? What potential or possibilities do you think there are? 
  2. Concrete examples of change practices as a result of these changes – this might be sharing exercises, advice, experiences, things which did (not) work, ideas for others to try. 

We have chosen the format of a zine because of its flexibility and want to encourage submissions to be as creative as possible! If writing is your thing, then please try to stick to a limit of no more than 750 words, or perhaps send through a short poem.

Why not get in-front of the camera and send through a video clip, or experiment with an audio recording, collage, pictures, or even a photo essay. The choice is yours!

We'll include online content where possible – if you have technical or other questions, please ask us. We also invite proposals for future topics relevant to co-operative learning of any kind. 

Please send submissions and address any queries to [email protected]  or [email protected] by Friday 22 May 2020.