28 October 2020

WE OWN IT! was a campaign on youth cooperative entrepreneurship developed by CICOPA from 2016 to 2018.

For the past several years, the level of youth unemployment in the world has increased to alarming levels. At the same time, young people around the globe have been expressing increasing dissatisfaction about mainstream economic governance and an increasing interest for cooperatives, in a quest for more democracy and transparency. Cooperatives are a way to own and manage enterprises democratically: everyone’s voice is heard, and everyone’s wellbeing is considered.

WE OWN IT! campaign sought to inspire the next generation to create more equal, fulfilling and caring workplaces through cooperatives.

In this page you will find all the resources collected and created during the campaign, such as tools and information on cooperatives you need, including on youth cooperative entrepreneurship.

We intend to keep this page up-to-date with the latest studies, tools, and experiences. Any information missing? Let us know by sending an email to

Global Study:

The “Global Study on Youth Cooperative Entrepreneurship” is based on a survey involving 64 youth cooperatives in the five continents. It shows how – in a world of work deeply reshaped by demographic changes, globalization, technological innovations and youth unemployment – cooperatives can be a concrete tool in the hands of young people for improving their work and entrepreneurship conditions. Read more here.


Money grows on trees. Youth organisations setting-up cooperatives. A practical guide providing a theoretical background to cooperatives and also a political tool urging youth organisations to rethink their fundraising strategies and encourage them to start looking at business as a way to promote their mission and advance their work. Published by the European Youth Forum in collaboration with CECOP, the European confederation of cooperatives in industry and services.

Social Inclusion and Young People. Excluding Youth: A threat to our future. A report exploring the social situation of youth and assess the quality of social policies, services available to young people and how to create of quality and secure jobs through cooperatives. Published by the European Youth Forum in collaboration with CECOP, the European confederation of cooperatives in industry and services.

The Global Youth Forum 2020, brought together  young entrepreneurs and professionals from all around the world in order to offer them quality training sessions to improve their skills, knowledge and motivation. Several trainings that took place feature multiple CICOPA members. Organized by the International Cooperative Alliance.

All For One, response of worker-owned cooperatives to non-standard employment. This report sets out to show the contributions made by cooperatives to the issues related to non-standard employment, such as precariousness, low income, insufficient social security coverage and workers’ isolation, all of which have particularly impacted young people in the recent years. Published by CECOP, the European confederation of cooperatives in industry and services.


Here you can find some video resources of young cooperators all around the globe building more equal, fulfilling and caring workplaces.

Mini documentary: Working together for a cooperative future.

How young people and cooperative values are creating a better future? Fajna Sztuka (Poland), ERSE (Italy), and Les Relais (France).

Videos made for the promotion for the WE OWN IT! campaign: TZBZ (Spain), SMart Chile (Chile), Ardelaine (France).


There are many ways to become a cooperator: everyone’s journey is different. Whichever stage you are at in your cooperative journey, there are stories, knowledge, ideas and contacts to help you on your way.

Find your nearest support organisation for advice on: business guidance, access to funds, training, and other essential services for cooperative start-ups here.

More on youth cooperative movement:

International Cooperative Alliance Youth Network, helping young cooperators from different countries to connect, share experiences and ideas; providing an environment where young cooperators can learn more about the wider co-operative movement; involving young people from outside the movement through education and support and empowering young cooperators to engage with the rest of the movement to both raise the profile of youth issues and to ensure the youth perspective is presented during wider discussions.

Youth for #Coop: Cooperating Beyond Borders, a document aiming to aggregate the exchanges carried out among the 70 young cooperators who reflected and cooperated during the workshop “Youth for #Coop: cooperating beyond borders” in the framework of the International Summit of Cooperatives in 2016. It also presents some leaders of youth networks, providing insight into different activities carried out across the world. By Co-operatives Europe and the Centre for Young actors and managers in the social economy (CJDES).


The WE OWN IT! campaign was funded by supporters from all around the globe, and sponsored by Coopfond, CoopStartUpMondragon Corporation, International Cooperative Alliance, and The Co-Operators.

Campaign visuals: