Back to the future

I’ve been working this morning on the presentation I’ll be giving in a couple of weeks at the Society for Co-operative Studies’ annual conference, being held in Leicester on September 5th and 6th.

I’ve titled my presentation Britain’s early productive cooperatives, why they were forgotten, and why they’re relevant today, although it’s fair to say that my focus will be mainly on one particular cooperative, the fustian mill in Hebden Bridge which was in its day considered one of the exemplars of manufacturing cooperation and which is the subject of my recently published book All Our Own Work.

I’ll be suggesting that the experiences of bottom-up worker self-management in those nineteenth century pioneering businesses could be worth re-examining.  (And, you know what, that this could be surprisingly relevant for those of us currently completing our Labour Party leadership ballot papers…)

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