New IRES Working Paper by SOCENT researchers Anaïs Périlleux and Marthe Nyssens available on-line

The Working Paper entitled “Understanding Cooperative Finance as a New Common”, by Anaïs Périlleux and Marthe Nyssens, is available for download on the SOCENT website.

Abstract: The emerging field of common good socio-economics is promising not only for the preservation of common natural resources but also for the common goods created by people through collective action, the importance of which has been emphasized by the recent financial and economic crisis. Based on the case of cooperative finance, this paper’s outcomes are threefold. First, it demonstrates that financial cooperatives can be understood as a human-made common. Secondly, it shows that while the boundaries between the nature and property regime of goods may be relatively clear for natural common goods, they appear much more interlinked for human-made goods, where commons are embedded in intergenerational reciprocity. Thirdly, the paper proposes a new way of thinking about public policies and shows the need to recognize financial cooperatives as human-made commons so as to design adequate legislation to protect these commons from isomorphism, privatization and destruction.