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These companies with no CEO are thriving

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Co-ops are a big part of the global economy: they employ 10% of the world’s workforce and over two trillion dollars flow through their doors every year. At a co-op, there’s no single person with overarching, top-down power over everyone else, like a CEO at a traditional company. So what exactly is a co-op and how does it work? Explore the different types of cooperatives and how they operate.

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TED-Ed Animations feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed Animation? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Director Elizabeth Galian, AIM Creative Studios
  • Script Writer George Zaidan
  • Narrator George Zaidan
  • Storyboard Artist Elizabeth Galian
  • Animator Elizabeth Galian, Jorge Ramos
  • Illustrator Elizabeth Galian
  • Music André Aires
  • Sound Designer André Aires
  • AIM Creative Studios Producer Tiago Ribeiro, Marta dos Santos
  • Director of Production Gerta Xhelo
  • Producer Alexandra Zubak
  • Associate Producer Sazia Afrin
  • Editorial Director Alex Rosenthal
  • Editorial Producer George Zaidan
  • Expert Consultant Trebor Scholz, Anu Puusa, Joe Holtz
  • Special Thanks Anna Bruce-Lockhart, World Economic Forum
Additional Resources for you to Explore
Virginie Pérotin, Professor of Economics at Leeds University Business School, specializes in the effects of firm ownership and governance on performance, worker co-operatives, employee ownership, and profit sharing. She wrote an analysis titled:
“What Do We Really Know About Worker Co-operatives?”

Among other things, she details the benefits of coops: they tend to be larger and cost less money. They often survive longer and are more stable than traditional businesses. They’re often more organized, efficient and productive. There’s less of a difference in pay between the top earner and lowest paid employee, so they are more equitable. For a snapshot of worker collectives in the U.S., including statistics and infographics, head over here.

The Coop Economy 2020 is a comprehensive report on the UK’s Cooperative sector. In it, you’ll find a breakdown of ownership and control, a summary of survival rates, two case studies – the Creative Coop and the Open Food Network – and a breakdown of each sector and how much money is being made each year within each.

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About TED-Ed Animations

TED-Ed Animations feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed Animation? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Director Elizabeth Galian, AIM Creative Studios
  • Script Writer George Zaidan
  • Narrator George Zaidan
  • Storyboard Artist Elizabeth Galian
  • Animator Elizabeth Galian, Jorge Ramos
  • Illustrator Elizabeth Galian
  • Music André Aires
  • Sound Designer André Aires
  • AIM Creative Studios Producer Tiago Ribeiro, Marta dos Santos
  • Director of Production Gerta Xhelo
  • Producer Alexandra Zubak
  • Associate Producer Sazia Afrin
  • Editorial Director Alex Rosenthal
  • Editorial Producer George Zaidan
  • Expert Consultant Trebor Scholz, Anu Puusa, Joe Holtz
  • Special Thanks Anna Bruce-Lockhart, World Economic Forum