Thursday, 12 December 2013 13:57

Rochdale cooperative principles

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The Rochdale Principles are a set of ideals for the operation of cooperatives. They were first set out by the Rochdale Society of Equitable Pioneers in Rochdale, United Kingdom, in 1844, and have formed the basis for the principles on which co-operatives around the world operate to this day

Rochdale cooperative principles:

  • 1. Voting is by members on a democratic (one-member, one-vote) basis.
  • 2. Membership is open.
  • 3. Equity is provided by members.
  • 4. Equity ownership share of individual members is limited.
  • 5. Net income is distributed to members as patronage refunds on a cost basis.
  • 6. Dividends on equity capital are limited.
  • 7. Exchange of goods and services at market prices.
  • 8. Duty to educate.
  • 9. Cash trading only.
  • 10. No unusual risk assumption.
  • 11. Political and religious neutrality.
  • 12. Equality in membership (no discrimination by gender).

Adapted from David Barton,"Principles," in David Cobia (ed.). Cooperatives in Agriculture. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1989.

Source: Kimberly A. Zeuli and Robert Cropp. Сooperatives principles and practices in the 21st century

Official web-site of the Rochdale pioneers Museum -

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