October 10, 2013
Stories.coop is the first global digital campaign to choose the storytelling tradition as a way of communicating the cooperative experience to the general public. Devised for 2012, the United Nations International Year of Cooperatives, the aim of Stories.coop was to present a new story of cooperation from around the world every day during the year. By exploring a wide variety of sectors, sizes and countries, the project promoted the cooperative model in all its diversity, highlighting cooperatives’ contribution to social and economic development and supporting the formation and growth of cooperative enterprises at an international level.
At the end of 2012, the campaigns’ excellent results inspired its organizers, Euricse (European Research Institute on Cooperative and Social Enterprise) and the ICA (International Cooperative Alliance), to continue the project, improving the accessibility of the valuable archive which had been compiled during the year and collecting new contributions. To this end, a new Stories.coop site is being launched in October 2013, completely redesigned in order to improve the stories’ visibility. Innovations include the addition of new material, like academic case studies, journalistic reports on key themes for the development of cooperation and in-depth analyses of cooperatives, their impact and the challenges they face. The new site will be officially presented at the ICA Global Conference (capetown2013.coop) in Cape Town, South Africa, to be held from 1 to 5 November. The Stories.coop content is released under a Creative Commons license in order to facilitate its use and sharing, with the aim of reaching and inspiring as wide a public as possible.
STORIES.COOP IN NUMBERS
To date, the site has had almost 200,000 visits from all five continents, and especially from the United States, Italy, the United Kingdom, Argentina and France, and an average of 10,000 views a month. Stories.coop has continued to welcome contributions in 2013 and currently has almost 450 stories about cooperatives from all sectors and of all sizes, located in every part of the world. Over 300 written stories and 100 videos as well as photos and slideshows have been submitted by the cooperatives themselves. All the stories have been written or edited by expert writers.
JANUARY 2012: THE LAUNCH OF STORIES.COOP
The Stories.coop project began in early 2012, the UN International Year of Cooperatives, with the objective of communicating how widely spread, how deeply rooted, how strong and how varied the cooperative model is around the world, through the use of narrative stories. The story form was chosen for its capacity to be involving and to raise awareness.
The stories tell of collective enterprises active in various traditional sectors (credit, agriculture, housing, retail) or in providing services of general interest (social services, healthcare, social inclusion, education). The results obtained by these enterprises are often better than those from for-profit companies and public organizations, but the cooperative model is not just about business success and turnover. In many cases, these cooperatives represent a sustainable solution to issues of exploitation, malnutrition, violence, social unrest and poverty or to problems related to a lack of investment, credit or services.
The stories collected on the site are a source of innovative entrepreneurial ideas, a reflection on the highly topical theme of sustainability and a stockpile of examples of best practices, of potential interest to researchers and institutions.
OCTOBER 2013: A FUNCTIONAL REDESIGN FOR THE SITE
With the aim of promoting the database of stories collected so far, promoting it to a wider public and enriching it with exclusive extra content, in October 2013 Stories.coop is presenting a redesign of its site, with several structural improvements.
· more dynamic and interactive site;
· easier to submit stories;
· improved classification of stories;
· easier to search the archive, by country, sector, keyword or size;
· journalistic reports on the five themes the ICA believes are fundamental to the development of the cooperative movement in the coming years LINK;
· more in-depth analyses of cooperatives, their impact, their successes and the challenges they face promotion of case studies of particular interest to researchers and university students.
For more information
PRESS OFFICE – email@example.com
> Aleksandra Bobic – EURICSE Tel. +39 0461 283782 – Mob. +39 346 8830052
> Erika Gardumi – RIZOMA Tel. +39 051 0563855 – Mob. +39 339 5084596
EXAMPLES OF STORIES: