Globalization, social innovation, and co-operative development: A comparative analysis of Québec and Saskatchewan, 1980-2010.
This study examines the development gap that has emerged between the co-operative sectors of the Canadian provinces of Québec and Saskatchewan since 1980. It harnesses historical research, textual analysis, and semi-structured interviews to better understand how some movements are able to regenerate their movements in the face of crisis. The study finds that the regeneration of the Québec movement reflects the concertation (concerted action) of social movement, sector, and state actors. Deeply rooted in a collectivist tradition of cultural nationalism and state corporatism, this democratic partnership supported the renovation and expansion of the co-operative development system in a virtuous spiral of movement agency, innovation, and regeneration. Concertation of social movement and state actors created momentum for escalating orders of joint-action, institution-building, and policy and program development. By contrast, the degeneration of the Saskatchewan movement reflects the decline of the agrarian economy and movement and a failure to effectively coordinate the efforts of emerging social movements and the state for development action. This has yielded a vicious spiral of movement inertia, under-development, and decline. Although green shoots are in evidence, regeneration efforts in Saskatchewan lag Québec’s progress in rebuilding the foundations for effective democratic partnership. The study concludes with a detailed comparison of these diverging movements, offering conclusions and recommendations for the repair of the Saskatchewan development system and the regeneration of its co-operative movement.
solidarity economy, social economy, social movements, community economic development, Co-operatives, economic democracy
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)