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“I smugly replied, yes, I know it, I own a small part of it”: Exploring consumer co-operative pub membership

Old painting of the interior of 18th century pub

Wednesday 24 January 2018, 12.00PM to 1.00pm

Speaker(s): Professor Victoria Wells, The York Management School

Abstract

In recent years many pubs and shops, particularly in rural locations have, in response to the threat of losing these valuable community assets sought to save them through becoming consumer co-operatives.  This reflects a growing trend, by the end of 2016 there were 46 consumer cooperative pubs operating in the UK, compared to 6 in 2010.  Consumer co-operatives are co-operative enterprises owned by consumers and managed democratically which aim at fulfilling the needs and aspirations of their members.  This presentation will report on a project examining one such consumer co-operative pub.  The project interviewed 37 members of the co-operative.  While initially the project was focused on the motivations to join a consumer co-operative the project also showed that the notion of community was not straightforward. As well as the co-operative creating connection and attachment boundaries could also be seen which created disconnection or division.  The presentation will end by presenting a future research agenda for these increasingly popular enterprises.

Location: LMB/102b