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Student Cooperatives as Cooperatives' Nurseries? Reflections on Cooperative Principles of Student Cooperatives in Croatia

Davorka Vidović orcid id ; Fakultet političkih znanosti Sveučilišta u Zagrebu, Lepušićeva 6, 10 000 Zagreb

Puni tekst: hrvatski pdf 882 Kb

str. 389-416

preuzimanja: 610



Student cooperatives are a phenomenon with a long tradition in Croatia and have been formally regulated since 1950s as a form of extracurricular activity within the educational system. In the last 15 years, the number of student cooperatives has increased significantly and there are 602 student cooperatives today, which means that almost half of the schools have established one. This paper presents the results from a survey on student cooperatives in Croatia, which was conducted in 2018 and 2019. The research was based on an exploratory approach and qualitative methodology and used interviews and focus groups on a convenient sample of ten student cooperatives. The paper relies on the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA) as its main conceptual framework, which defines the “cooperative identity” through its seven basic principles and ten values. The purpose of this paper was to determine how these basic cooperative principles are applied in the activities of student cooperatives and whether we can view student cooperatives as a kind of cooperatives' nurseries. The findings revealed that some principles, such as education about cooperatives and democratic governance, are insufficiently reflected in student cooperatives. This can ultimately weaken the development of students' cooperative identity and reduce their interest in starting or participating in a cooperative in adulthood.

Ključne riječi

education; schools; student cooperatives; cooperatives; cooperative principles; cooperative identity

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