Co-operators, practitioners and researchers are meeting in Manchester on 21-22 April to discuss the future of co-operative education. Organised by the Co-operative College, the Co-operative Education Conference will look at three main topics: shaping co-operative education systems; character, learning and co-operation; and learning for global co-operative livelihoods.
The event will feature a keynote speech from Linda Shaw, a historian with experience in adult education and international development. Ms Shaw recently retired as vice-principal of the Co-operative College, after helping to reinvent the organisation as a centre of co-operative research and building new links with the international co-operative movement.
Dr Sarah Alldred, the College’s lead on international programmes and research, said: “Linda brought a research culture to the College, along with her expertise and passion for co-operatives in the developing world context. She created a strong reputation for the College as a go-to place for information about international co-operative development and research, which we continue to build on.”
She added: “Linda has a strong reputation and is widely respected. By inviting her to be keynote speaker at our inaugural research conference we are acknowledging her significant contribution to the co-operative movement and the College.”
Day One is dedicated to research in co-operative education and development, with confirmed presentations covering topics such as co-operative caste and gender in India; the evolution of international co-operative education; co-operative universities and the co-operative character. The conference will also give examples of case studies from Brazil, South Korea, Canada, India and the UK.
Participants will also hear from Prof Tony Webster of the University of Northumbria, co-author of Building Co-operation: A Business History of the Co-operative Group 1863-2013.
The second day includes a keynote speech from Karen Miner from Saint Mary’s University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Ms Miner has been managing director, co-operative management education at Saint Mary’s since 2012, and works with co-operators from around the world. Her expertise covers governance, strategy, business management and sustainability within co-operatives, non-profit organisations and government.
“Canada’s co-operative movement has a reputation for its strength and diversity,” said Dr Sarah Alldred. “We are looking forward to Karen’s insights around trends and issues in management education for co-operatives. The College has a strong international reputation, and we are placing co-operative education in an international context.”
Day Two is practitioner-focused and will include presentations on co-operative schools; co-operative development in Sri Lanka; young co-operators and social haunting.
Other sessions will focus on co-operative pedagogy, solidarity economies and co-operation on campus. Cllr David Rodgers will deliver a presentation on the new international guidance on the co-operative principles while College vice principal Cilla Ross will look at global citizenship through learning. Young co-operators from Woodcraft Folk will also present an oral history project.
- A full programme of the conference will be available soon. Participants that are members of the College can also attend the organisation’s first annual general meeting since becoming a charitable incorporated organisation, which will start after the closing speeches of the first day. More information on the event is available here.