Cooperatives, economic democratization and rural development
This recent book by Jos Bijman from Wageningen University, Roldan Muradian from Universidade Federal Fluminense and Jur Schuurman, formerly Agriterra, focuses on agricultural cooperatives and producer organizations as institutional innovations which have the potential to reduce poverty and improve food security. This book presents a raft of international case studies, from developing and transition countries, to analyse the internal and external challenges that these complex organizations face and the solutions that they have developed. The contributors provide a greater understanding of the transformation of traditional community organizations into modern farmer-owned businesses. They cover issues including: the impact on rural development and inclusiveness, the role of social capital, formal versus informal organizations, democratic participation and member relations, and their role in value chains. Students and scholars could find the book’s multidisciplinary approach useful in their research. It can also be of interest to policy-makers seeking to understand the wide diversity of organizational forms and functions. NGOs, donors and governments seeking to support rural developments can benefit from the discussions raised in this book.