What Motivates Members to Participate in Co-operative and Mutual Businesses?
This article reports the findings of a project entitled 'The participation of members in mutual businesses'. A previous project developed a theoretical model of what makes people participate, focusing on the participation of public service users in council housing and social care services. The current project builds on this work, applying the 'mutual incentives model' to a population sample of area committee members and a random sample of non-participant members of a very large UK consumer co-operative, the Co-operative Group. Two arguments are presented as to why such research is needed. First, member participation in co-operative and mutual businesses is becoming an important issue both for this sector and more generally for public policy. Second, a comparison between a public services setting and a co-operative setting enables us to extend and further test the theoretical model. Two main features of the model are outlined: a 'mutual incentives theory' that goes beyond other models to combine individualistic and collectivistic motivations, and the 'participation chain', a synthesis of existing knowledge that joins motivations to three 'links' that we call 'resources', 'mobilization' and 'dynamics'. The article then summarizes the project methodology, and reports the main findings. As in the public services project, on the 'demand' side, collectivistic incentives prove to be dominant over individualistic, but with some individual 'internal' benefits also being important. On the 'supply' side, skills derived from previous experience were important, as were a positive evaluation of opportunities to participate, and recruitment through existing networks. We then compare the findings to those from the public service users and from a regional co-operative society; Oxford, Swindon and Gloucester Co-op. Collective motivations are dominant in all three datasets, but are shown to vary in interesting ways that have important implications for member participation strategies. Copyright CIRIEC, 2004.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Volume (Year): 75 (2004)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journal.asp?ref=1370-4788|
|Order Information:||Web: http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/subs.asp?ref=1370-4788|
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:annpce:v:75:y:2004:i:3:p:465-495. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing)or (Christopher F. Baum)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.