January 16, 2024

Oxfam Report Recommends Support for Employee Ownership

NCEO founder and senior staff member

Oxfam, a nonprofit focusing on hunger and other poverty-rated issues, issued a report that includes a number of recommendations, one of which is “providing financial support to employee-owned businesses, including worker cooperatives. This includes the implementation of ILO [International Labour Organization] Recommendation no.193 on promoting cooperatives and relevant regional instruments.” That recommendation, which is specific to cooperatives, "provides non-binding guidelines in drafting and/or revising national policy and legislation."

The report, Inequality Inc., has received a lot of media attention, with findings such as “The combined fortunes of the world's five richest men have more than doubled to $869 billion since 2020, while five billion people have been made poorer.” Although some critics have noted ways in which that particular claim may be exaggerated, other data point in the same direction of increasing concentration of wealth.

Oxfam's recommendation is in line with findings by the NCEO, especially our report Employee Ownership and Economic Well-Being, which finds that employee-owners have 92% greater net household wealth than non-employee-owners. The NCEO report also finds that employee ownership improves economic well-being across demographic groups.