Birchall J & Simmons R (2007) The Role and Potential of Co-operatives in the Poverty Reduction Process: a research agenda. Journal of Co-operative Studies, 40 (1), pp. 43-51. http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/ukscos/jcs/2007/00000040/00000001/art00005
This paper is an introduction to a current research project on co-operatives and poverty reduction. Its purpose is a little different from that of the conventional journal article as it has been written to inform academic researchers, potential research partners, key informants and international collaborators of why the project has been set up, what it aims to achieve, how we intend to go about doing the research, and how we hope the results will be disseminated. It begins by summarising the 'mixed history' of co-operatives in relation to poverty reduction, distinguishing between the different trajectories in developed countries, the ex-communist countries and developing countries. Then it sets out some arguments as to why co-operatives might be thought to have comparative advantages in reduction of poverty. It defines the two main concepts: co-operatives and poverty. Then it sets out the project's aims, its research strategy and its methodology, drawing on the literature on poverty traps and organisational comparative advantage. The expected outputs are described, and the project's ethical stance is explained.
Journal of Co-operative Studies: Volume 40, Issue 1