We're delighted to announce the release of a brand new research report highlighting how co-operatives can act as a bridge to peace.

Titled Co-operatives and Peace: Strengthening Democracy, Participation and Trust - A Case Study Approach, the report presents twenty case studies from more than fourteen countries, covering different types and stages of conflicts.

Real examples. Real change

Presenting practical examples, it looks at cooperatives contributing to the empowerment of minority groups affected by conflict, providing decent work and sustainable development in fragile contexts, as well as supporting mitigation of conflict through partnerships with other actors and the provision of humanitarian support.

As a lead partner on the writing and compiling of the report, we were also joined on the project by Kooperationen and Coopermondo, with input from all CEDP members too. The research has been supported by the Cooperatives Europe Development Platform (CEDP) and has been produced in the framework of the ICA-EU Partnership (#coops4dev)

Co-operative Solutions

The report demonstrates that co-operatives can play an important role in peacebuilding worldwide, whilst also contributing to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). By building self-sufficient and resilient communities, and by encouraging dialogue and democratic participation, the cooperative business model is able to bridge the gap between conflict resolution and long term development strategies, addressing persistent structural challenges facing communities. It also offers a number of conclusions and recommendations addressed to policymakers, co-operative leaders, and external partners.

Sarah Alldred, International Programmes Manager, Co-operative College commented:

The College is delighted to have played a key role, alongside the CEDP partners, in the creation of this report illustrating, through a series of case studies, the implicit role co-operative enterprise can play in building peace from the grassroots up.As we celebrate our centenary year, our international co-operative development work continues to illustrate our commitment to the notion that through our values and principles, co-operatives can contribute significantly to building a fairer, more stable world.

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