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On 30 September, #coops4dev celebrated the end of the Partnership with the European Union on international cooperative development. During five and a half years, #coops4dev has contributed to cement the role of the cooperative model as a key international development actor. Over these years, the joint work done by ICA global and regional offices under the ICA-EU Partnership, a solid network of partners and stakeholders from the cooperative movement and the international development field working at global and local levels has been created.


Together with our partners, we have developed many impactful and innovative activities with sound effects on several areas such as research, legislation, policy and partnerships, capacity building and education, and communication and visibility.

To learn more about the #coops4dev activities, read the storybook




The closing eventt gathered the #coops4dev’s team including staff members from all ICA regions, who looked back on this journey and presented the main activities developed during the Partnership. They also discussed the future prospects.


The event presented a conversation on the importance of multi-stakeholder partnerships and the impact of the #coops4dev’s work on the cooperative movement and its contribution to economic, social, and environmental sustainability and justice, with one eye on the future.


The event was structured into two parts


- An opening session focusing on the importance of collaboration and partnerships. The panel of speakers included Mr. Ariel Guarco, President, International Cooperative Alliance; Ms. Marlene Holzner, Head of Unit G2 at the European Commission’s Directorate-General International Partnerships (INTPA), European Commission; and the members of the Strategy Unit and Regional Directors of ICA Global and Regional Offices – Mr. Bruno Roelants, Director-General, ICA; Ms. Agnes Mathis, Cooperatives Europe; Mr. Balu Iyer, ICA Asia-Pacific; Mr. Danilo Salerno, Cooperatives of the Americas; and Dr. Chiyoge Buchekabiri Sifa, ICA Africa.


- Three parallel sessions on:



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Research - In the past six years, ICA and its regional offices undertook several research activities to strengthen the cooperative movement and contribute to a growing body of knowledge in the field of cooperative development. While four global research reports were completed on legal frameworks for cooperatives, mapping key figures for cooperatives, youth in cooperatives and the recently launched cooperatives and green economy, each ICA region also undertook thematic research studies at the regional level. The session focused on starting a dialogue on how to put this vast knowledge to practice and build upon the established foundations.


Capacity building – The session showcased various efforts and innovations of ICA and its regional offices to build the capacities of the staff, members, and cooperators. The ICA-AP regional office presented its pioneering youth-led initiatives - Coopathon and APCYS and inter-regional capacity building and collaboration between regions through various workshops. Other innovative initiatives like Global Cooperative Entrepreneurs’ program, Edu4all, Coopedia, CoopsTV, Project Development Network were also discussed. The audience showed interest in the proliferation of the Cooperative hackathon model worldwide


Policy dialogue and partnerships - The session brought the audience through the journey of #coops4dev policy and programming team exploring why and how it supported the cooperative movement as a key development actor. It focussed on the advocacy & programming work with Partnerships (SDG17) as a cross-cutting theme. A just and decent world of work, addressing inequalities, and sustainable & inclusive value chains were the three focus areas of the presentations which had an actor-based approach. During the session, with the support of concrete examples, the role that the cooperative movement can play as a key actor for Policy Dialogue & Partnerships was highlighted.



The event session recording will be made available on the closing event website.