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Jun 5, 2023

Discover the power of employee-ownership as we explore how worker cooperatives are shaping the future of work and providing innovative solutions for customers and meaningful work, autonomy, and a voice in the workplace for workers.


Emi Do is an Assistant Professor of Economics at Tokyo University of Agriculture and a co-author of the book "Cooperatives at Work."


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Episode Highlights

1:56 What are worker cooperatives?

6:02 Worker coop organizational structures

8:26 Benefits and challenges of being part of a worker cooperative

10:37 Decision-making in worker coops

13:22 "Consensus minus one"

14:47 Are worker coops really innovative?

16:25 The relationship between business owners and employees

19:00 Do people get fired in worker coops?

22:53 The amazing success of Mondragon

25:04 Converting a traditional organization into a worker coop

26:52 Employee-owners succeed where previous management failed


Emi's view on the greatest unmet wellbeing need at work today

"Definitely work life balance. I think worker coops struggle with this as well. It's part of the market economy, there's a certain urgency to everything that requires a timeliness and an ability to meet deadlines that sometimes is not compatible with making sure that you're taking care of [yourself] and that you're able to make sure that your own personal needs are being met. I find this particularly strongly in the consultancy world."


What “working with humans” means to Emi

“Showing up as a whole person, I am definitely somebody who is productive, but I'm also somebody who is somebody's partner. I am a daughter. I am a trail runner. I have passions, so I think working with humans means working with a whole person.”



Follow: Emi on LinkedIn

Read: Cooperatives at Work