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Eriksson, Viktor, 2021. Cooperatives at a crossroads : trajectories of agricultural cooperatives in Ukraine. Second cycle, A2E. Uppsala: SLU, Dept. of Urban and Rural Development



This exploratory comparative case study seeks to understand challenges and strategies for
farmer collective action in post-Soviet settings. It does so by examining member relations,
trust and commitment in two successful dairy cooperatives in western Ukraine: one NGOinitiated
cooperative with a bottom-up organization, and one cooperative developed in liaison
with a local large-scale agricultural enterprise (LSE). Through qualitative field study data from
28 interviews, the study shows how the rural institutional context affects cooperative
The results indicate that initial and to some extent lingering issues of trust among villagers
seemingly linked to failed or fraudulent projects and investments of the transition period
can be an obstacle for cooperatives linked to NGOs. Meanwhile, such trust issues could easily
be circumvented by the second cooperative through its strong links to the local LSE, which
could bestow the cooperative with trustworthiness.
The study also shows how the two cases, due to their origins and support, differ a lot in their
member relations, including how they handle collective action problems and how members
identify within the cooperatives. While the NGO-backed cooperative opts for a strategy that
advocates equity, participation and a strong care for community, the LSE cooperative opts for
a more vertical, business-like organization, at the expense of some of the cooperative
Pointing to the institutional factors which enable LSE cooperatives, a continued development
of LSE cooperatives is expected and discussed. Lawmakers may need to distinguish between
traditional cooperatives and LSE cooperatives in order to secure the needs of both types of

Main title:Cooperatives at a crossroads
Subtitle:trajectories of agricultural cooperatives in Ukraine
Authors:Eriksson, Viktor
Supervisor:Rosén, Linus and Borodina, Olena
Examiner:Kuns, Brian
Volume/Sequential designation:UNSPECIFIED
Year of Publication:2021
Level and depth descriptor:Second cycle, A2E
Student's programme affiliation:NY007 Agriculture Programme - Rural Development 270 HEC
Supervising department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Urban and Rural Development
(LTJ, LTV) > Dept. of Urban and Rural Development
Keywords:agricultural, cooperative, Ukraine, post-soviet, trust, collective action
Permanent URL:
Subject. Use of subject categories until 2023-04-30.:Organization, administration and management of agricultural enterprises or farms
Deposited On:06 Jul 2021 09:19
Metadata Last Modified:07 Jul 2021 01:01

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