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Hannah Renglich - Group Decision Making

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Hannah Renglich - Group Decision Making

  1. 1. Group Decision Making Hannah Renglich
  2. 2. Agenda• Introductions• Defining “democratic”• Methodologies and Mechanisms - HOW• Participants – WHO• Spaces in which Decisions get Made – WHERE• Cultures of Decision Making• A critical perspective on co-ops
  3. 3. Introductions• Name• Co-op• Decision Making structure or system used• Level of satisfaction with that system
  4. 4. Articulating Democracy• Most human beings have the potential to make reasoned, fair and compassionate decisions• A plurality of opinions is a healthy thing
  5. 5. Truly Democratic Organizing Principles• Equalizing Access to Power• Transparency• Democratic Decision Making• Balancing Rights and Responsibilities• Equalizing Inequalities (Equity)• Leadership Empowerment and Creation
  6. 6. Methodologies and Mechanisms• Informal / Nothing• Consensus• Modified Consensus• Voting• Hierarchy
  7. 7. Where is the Decision Made?• Informally• When everyone is together• In committees empowered by the larger group
  8. 8. Culture of Decision Making• Systemic Power Dynamics and Oppression• Informal Power1. How open is your decision making process?2. How does your group tackle difficult decisions?3. Do people implement decisions made?4. When does the decision get made?*Vibesminder
  9. 9. Changing a Group’s Culture
  10. 10. Co-operative Approaches toAlternative Food and Farm Initiatives: This is Democracy? Wednesday February 27 LOFC Network 4th Assembly
  11. 11. Broadening the Conversation Do co-operatives promote inclusivity, democracy, sovereignty and transformation?Hannah Renglich, Local Organic Food Co-ops Network
  12. 12. Why Co-operate?Sticks in a bundle are unbreakable - Kenyan Proverb
  13. 13. 7 Principles of Co-operative Identity1. Voluntary and Open Membership All Welcome – No Pressure2. Democratic Member Control One Member = One Vote3. Member Economic Participation No Free Rides4. Autonomy and Independence Self-Control5. Education, Training + Information Share, Learn, Grow6. Co-operation Among Co-operatives Together Everyone Achieves More7. Concern for Community Building Strong CommunitiesThe current Statement on the Co-operative Identity was adopted at the 1995 Congress and General Assembly of the International Co-operative Alliance. The Statement was the product of a lengthy process of consultation involving thousands of co-operators around the world, chaired by Ian MacPherson of Canada.
  14. 14. Co-ops in Canada• There are over 9,000 co-operatives in Canada• One in four Canadians is a member of a co-op or credit union• In Canada, co-ops have 1.4 million members and 15,500 employees
  15. 15. Co-ops provide over one hundred million jobs around the world – 20% more than transnational corporationsCo-ops have a market share of 39% of all milk products in Canada 35% of the worlds maple syrup isproduced by co-operatives in Quebec Co-operatives market about 57% of all poultry and eggs produced in Canada
  16. 16. Co-ops weathereconomic recessions and outlive corporations Co-ops can be owned by eaters (consumers), farmers (producers), workers, and other stakeholders
  17. 17. Share of World’s Wealth 15% Top $ 10% Bottom 90% 85%
  18. 18. Share of Farm Revenue (Canada: 1985 to 2009) 0.4% Farmers Suppliers & Banks 99.6%
  19. 19. Farmers’ Share of Food $70% 60%60%50% 47%40%30% 20%20%10%0% 1952 2010 Co-op
  20. 20. The Breadth of Food and Farm Co-ops
  21. 21. Democracy
  22. 22. Justice
  23. 23. Sovereignty
  24. 24. Inclusivity
  25. 25. Transformation• Value co-operation and are either – incorporated as co-ops – co-operatively structured collectives – in process toward incorporation, with the stated intention to incorporate – utilize the co-operative principles within their governance as a guiding framework (ie. co-op-minded)• Centre around food and farming or have some component of food and farming within their activities• Emphasize direct relationship: local, regional, sustainable food production and distribution, domestic or international fair trade• Have a defined and stated environmental commitment, ie. organic, sustainable, Integrated Pest Management, wildcrafted, biodynamic, permaculture, etc.• Uphold the principles of positively transforming the food system toward greater co-operation, sustainability, and resilience
  26. 26. Solidarity
  27. 27. If co-ops are so great, why isn’t everyone a co-op?• Administratively burdensome• Co-op Lite?• Slow• Sweat Equity and Initial Capitialization is daunting• No one teaches us how to co-operate
  28. 28. West End Food Co-op
  29. 29. Lifecycle of a Co-op• Co-ops fill a need of a community, which is unaddressed by markets or governments• When that need no longer exists, the co-op may cease to be relevant• Mature and ageing co-ops may come to resemble corporations, without careful attention to maintaining their co-operative values• Strawberry patch model and P6
  30. 30. Ontario Natural Food Co-op
  31. 31. Thank you! hrenglich@onfc.ca http://cultivatingfoodcoops.netfacebook.com/cultivatingfoodcoops @lofcnetwork

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