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Join us for an informal networking and learning event. Hear from a couple successful cooperative businesses who are combining economic justice, a love for their trade, and engaging their communities to make a better world. AUGUST 31 at 5 PM.



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COOPERATIVES “101” Links Here


ALSO: LINK to the VIDEO:  “For Profit Cooperatives: How Do They Work?




  1. Voluntary and Open Membership

  2. Democratic Member Control

  3. Members’ Economic Participation

  4. Autonomy and Independence

  5. Education, Training and Information

  6. Cooperation among Cooperatives

  7. Concern for Community


These principles originated in Rochdale, England in 1840 by the Rochdale Society of Equitable Pioneers, and have been updated a few times since then, most recently by the International Cooperative Alliance.

For more information see our articles on the cooperative principles and their implementation here.


The Pittsburgh Chamber of Cooperatives is the hands-on resource for  worker-owned and member-owned businesses in southwestern Pennsylvania.

Our mission is to develop and implement a cooperative business infrastructure – an ecosystem for worker-owned and member-owned businesses to thrive – in the Pittsburgh area. We work with Pittsburgh’s cooperatives, inclusive economic development initiatives, and individuals.

The PCOC raises awareness of cooperative business culture, facilitates the formation of new cooperatives, assists in the conversion of existing businesses to cooperatives, provides guidance on cooperative governance, builds community loyalty to cooperatives, and brings visibility to the triple bottom line advantage of cooperative businesses in the region.


Cooperatives are for people with any level of background, skill set, or financial means. Combining forces to form worker-owned businesses or member-owned purchasing cooperatives is a way for anyone to increase visibility and scale – and therefore opportunity – to better compete for business in today’s climate and especially in many of the new development initiatives in the region’s communities.

Our services are:

  • informational networking events,
  • hands-on workshops and startup assistance,
  • advocacy to remove barriers to cooperative opportunity, and
  • business coaching tailored to worker-owned cooperative businesses.
  • Technical assistance for converting a conventional business to worker-ownership and co-op.

The benefits of cooperatives are many. Here are some: 1) cooperatives are owned by members, so they build wealth 2) they’re locally focused, so cooperatives make communities more resilient 3) cooperatives work on the triple bottom line principle: for people, planet, and profit 4) members of cooperatives share the burden in hard times and the benefits in good times 5) and cooperatives are run democratically. Now that’sAmerican business!


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Get the “10 Reasons Co-ops Rock!” poster.