Workers’ Cooperatives under Capitalism

  • Donald A. R. George


The closest approximation to a self-managed firm under capitalism is the workers’ cooperative. Such firms have existed for some considerable time: there were cooperative flour mills in eighteenth-century Britain and countless nineteenth-century experiments in cooperative living, some of which were inspired by the kind of anarchist ideology discussed in chapter two. Cooperatives have rarely produced a substantial proportion of economic output, though an exception to this are the workers’ cooperatives of pre-Civil War Spain. There are still relatively few cooperatives in the developed capitalist economies, though their number has been increasing over the last twenty years. There are now several thousand cooperatives in Italy, for example.


Production Function Trade Union Profit Sharing Umbrella Organisation Capitalist Firm 
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Copyright information

© Donald A. R. George 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donald A. R. George
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Queen’s UniversityCanada
  2. 2.University of EdinburghUK

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