The theme of the 2016 World Economic Forum is “The Fourth Industrial Revolution” – Or how technological developments such as the sharing economy create new notions of ownership, and a need for more meaningful social connections.
The sharing or collaborative, an economy is a new type of business built on the concept of shared resources. This ability to share what is available allows customers to access goods or services when they are needed, rather than having to purchase them “just in case” they need them. These forms of work can provide a good match of job opportunities and allow flexible working schedules. However, they can also pave the way to a severe commodification of work.
Co-operative enterprise, with its unique take on governance and values, can contribute to putting people before profit in the Fourth Revolution.
“At the forum”, says Monique Leroux (ICA President), “I have witnessed many discussions about a “purpose” which organizations should have – to succeed, grow and evolve. I like to point out that co-operative businesses have a sense of purpose embedded in them – it’s in our DNA, and we should capitalize on it to accomplish our missions. ”