Common Values: What links Participatory Budgeting, Cooperatives and Social Enterprise?

Woman at a community meeting, holding up a 'Building Vibrant Community' ideas sheet

How do the values of cooperation, social enterprise and democratic local governance link? How can we engage communities better, promote democracy and social action, and thereby effect real long-term change?

At Shared Future we care about joining things up to create a fair, more equitable and democratic world. In which everyone can take action and play their part. That’s why we are conducting some research into the underlying values of social enterprise, cooperatives and participatory budgeting.

We are inviting you to help us, by joining our free webinar, with Jez Hall and Dr Matt MacDonald
You are also invited to take the survey informing this webinar

In the 1 hour webinar we will explore the relationship between participatory budgeting(PB), cooperatives and social enterprises, and then relate these to Elinor Ostrom’s 8 principles for a self governed democratic ‘commons’.

What values sit behind behind managing our collective commons?

One of the underlying themes we are looking to explore is Elinor Ostrom’s work on Common Pool Resources, and how, through the right systems and structures, we could build a fairer and more just society based on strong and participatory local governance. Watch Elinor Ostrom give an overview of her rebuttal of the tragedy of the commons in this video.

Through this project we will explore if there might be a case to saying…

Participatory Budgeting encourages a culture of cooperative and social enterprise.

And if so, whether that’s because of some underlying common values? What do you think? Could there be a ‘virtuous relationship’ between stronger local governance, citizen participation and civic activism, from embedding values of cooperation, social enterprise or governing the commons more strongly within each?

And does that work both ways? Does a culture of cooperative or social enterprise foster interest or participation in participatory budgeting?

The webinar is aimed at anyone interested in the potential to develop engaged, active and democratic communities, and wanting to consider how bringing different approaches together under one common framework might stimulate more local action. That means people working in community development and engagement, as well as activists, campaigners, and academics.

After hearing a short presentation and initial feedback from our research, participants will be able to ask questions and take part in the debate. The results of the webinar, and our associated research will inform a discussion paper that we plan to deliver at the EMES International Social Enterprise Research Conference in Sheffield in late June 2019.

The research project, which we are funding ourselves, is being led by:

Jez Hall: Director, Shared Future CIC. Jez has a big commitment to Participatory Budgeting, and been at the centre of its development in the UK. He has worked with the University of Westminster’s Centre for the Study of Democracy, employed by Lancaster University Management School, specialising in social enterprise development, and also sits on the board of Social Enterprise Lancashire. He also works in a freelance capacity as a consultant on participatory governance for the World Bank.

Dr Matt MacDonald: Shared Future Director and Senior Lecturer, MMU. Matt is an experienced social enterprise and creative industries academic, consultant and trainer, Matt has previously worked as a Senior Research Associate and Social Entrepreneur-in-Residence for the University of Lancaster Management School, worked at Leeds Enterprise Centre, Leeds University Business School and at the Business and Community Enterprise Unit at the University of Cumbria. He brings further experience as a Chief Executive, Change Manager and Director of UK charities, social enterprises and arts organisations.

Join our free webinar on Common Values
You are also invited to take the survey informing this webinar

Below we have included links to a set of online resources that will inform our debate.

These are: