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Cooperative Development Institute


The Cooperative Development Institute (CDI) supports existing co-operations and people who want to launch a cooperatively owned business together. CDI helps existing privately held businesses convert into ones owned by their employees. CDI helps both start-up cooperatives and existing cooperative businesses.


The Cooperative Development Institute is active in the United States in the region of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut, Maine, Rhode Island and New York. The organization provides education, training and technical assistance to cooperatively-structured enterprises in all business sectors, like: food, agriculture, forestry, fisheries, housing, energy, arts, retail, service, health, and more.


The main goal of CDI is to help people attain the skills and tools they need to work together and meet their common needs. Whether helping a group of mobile home park residents figure out how to buy and run their community themselves, or helping a group of retail workers buy and run their places of work. In all fields of work CDI fosters a democratic ownership culture built on resourcefulness, innovation, community, autonomy.


The CDI is convinced that the cooperative model is ideal to fight inequality and they refer to the statement of John Adams, the second president of the US, who said that “property monopolized or in the possession of a few is a curse to mankind”.’ John Adams pleaded for a broad and democratic distribution of property among citizens and he went on to say that ‘through these means the US would preserve all from extreme poverty, and all others from extravagant riches.’ According to CDI that is exactly what cooperatives do. Cooperatives ensure an equitable distribution of property.




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Type of initiative Knowledge/advice organization, Information/network organization
Field of work Agriculture, Manufacturing, Trade, Education, Knowledge and information
Date of commencement 1994
Legal form Co-op
Continent North America
Country USA
City Shelburne Falls
One or several keywords that describe your initiative Co-op, cooperation, worker ownership, cooperative businesses, democratic ownership, working together, equality
Publications Resource Center, how to start a coop (, newsletter
More information

Contact person(s)

Kathleen Fekete Bauerlein


Contact information

Name Cooperative Development Institute
Address PO Box 422
Zip/postal code MA 01370
Place Shelburne Falls
State/province Massachusetts
Country USA
Phone +1 413-665-1271



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