Dame Pauline Green to Chair UN Advisory Group for International Year of Co-operatives

18 Nov 2011

Group of twenty co-operative leaders to provide guidance in achieving goals of Year.

Dame Pauline Green, president of the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA), is to chair the United Nations Advisory Group for the International Year of Co-operatives (IYC). The group will provide guidance, support and assistance to the Coordinating Committee in implementing the mandate and objectives of the IYC.

The group is comprised of 20 leaders of co-operative organisations from around the world and represents a range of economic sectors, including financial, retail and media. At the group’s first meeting, held at UN headquarters on Nov. 1, Green was elected to serve as chair. 

“I am honoured that such a prestigious group of leaders has selected me to chair this most important group,” said Dame Green.  “The International Year of Co-operatives offers us an opportunity to demonstrate the power of co-operative enterprise to a world in need.  The global financial collapse is hurting people.  We live in a world where wealth is inequitably distributed. We have seen the rise of new opposition groups, especially among the young who are frustrated and seek a fairer economic system. Co-operatives are values-based, sustainable businesses that are agents of change in creating a more equitable society,” she continued.

The Group has already taken urgent action to ensure that the role of co-operatives in helping to drive a sustainable green economy is recognised in the forthcoming Rio+20 negotiations in Brazil.

In addition, the group seeks to focus on issues of concern, including food security, inclusion, engagement of youth as well as diversification of the economy.

On 31st October the UN launched 2012 as the International Year of Co-operatives, with the theme “Co-operative Enterprises Build a Better World”. The International Year of Co-operatives offers the global co-operative community a platform to demonstrate that co-operatives offer a diverse, values-based business model to provide a sustainable source of revenue for communities and individuals.