How do you scale a co-operative? This was the challenge facing Namasté Solar, a workers co-operative based in Boulder USA. Set up by first time entrepreneurs in 2005 it aimed to provide innovative solar electric to Colorado and to distribute the benefits of its success to future employees. But when the cooperative needed finance to grow it looked as though it would have to compromise those ideals.
In their paper “Scaling Co-operatives Through a Multi-Stakeholder Network: A Case Study in the Colorado Solar Energy Industry” authors Júlia Martins Rodrigues and Nathan Schneider discuss how the cooperative developed an adaptive network of distinct and yet interlocking entities that enabled support for a diverse set of stakeholders while retaining the focus of each business.