For many, co‐operatives represent a challenge to existing systems of industrial relations and organisation structure. However, many of the co‐operatives which have been formed in recent years do not approximate to this vision, since they have not been set up from an ideological standpoint. Co‐operatives can be divided into three types: small business; participative; ideological. It is also important to evaluate their development against the reasons for their evolution. Indeed, the new co‐operatives are ideologically diverse, organisationally different, and a considerable way off being the job generators of the future.
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