Coordinating community economic ventures

Coordinating community business ventures
Increasing scope of business operations in small communities
Developing community enterprises
Broadening community business ventures
Coordinating community initiatives
Organizing new community ventures

Glasgow (Scotland) pioneered the idea of community business – setting up companies which aim to employ people rather than provide profits. The first community business was set up in 1984. More followed providing a range of basic services –  shops, decorating, arts – and within seven years there were 45 community businesses in the region. By then Strathclyde Community Business (SCB) had amassed a development fund of £1.5 million.

The guidance of the local priest in Mondragon (Spain) led to five local entrepreneurs turning their stove-making business into an employee-owned co-op. They also set up a local bank, which oversaw the expansion of a series of other linked co-ops in the town. Now the group consists of around 120 businesses, employing 22,000 local people. Only a handful have ever failed. When the Basque region unemployment rose to 30% in the 1980s, Mondragon's employment was maintained.

Business enterprises
Type Classification:
C: Cross-sectoral strategies