ILO COOP/SSE sends a video message to the LegaCoop Emilia-Romagna Congress on cooperative identity

The LegaCoop Emilia-Romagna Congress focusing on “Enterprise of the Future” took place on February 16, 2023 in Bologna with national and regional representatives from Legacoop.

News | 20 February 2023
The 13th LegaCoop Emilia Romagna Congress was held in Bologna on 16 February 2023. The congress, a step to the national assembly. The congress provided insights on issues that contribute to the improvement of the living conditions of members, partners, and the communities where the cooperative works. ILO COOP Unit Head Simel Esim participated in the Congress with a video message providing reflections on the cooperative identity.

Ms Esim highlighted a two-prong approach for the cooperative identity. First, she noted the need for the cooperative movement to open-up to reach out to new sectors and younger generations. She also pointed out to the relevance of opening up to the other social and solidarity economy entities that follow values and principles similar to those of cooperatives. She noted that she understood the need for being cautious and prudent against the misuse of the cooperative model. Such pseudo cooperative practices have been a concern for the legitimate cooperative movements around the world, including in Italy. For such contexts, cooperative movement will need to engage with local and national institutions responsible for registration, inspection and auditing in a systematic way, she added. Safeguards will need to be put in place, she underlined, against dilution and co-optation of the cooperative values and principles in line with ILO’s Promotion of Cooperatives Recommendation, 2002 (No. 193). The ILC resolution on decent work and the social and solidarity economy adopted in 2022 also points out to the importance of combatting pseudo-SSE.