Cooperatives play an important role in international development. Cooperative development moves away from the traditional, paternalistic aid-based model to a business enterprise tool that nurtures economic, social, and environmental sustainability.
The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) was created by President John F. Kennedy. USAID leads international development and humanitarian efforts to save lives, reduce poverty, strengthen democratic governance, and help people progress beyond assistance. USAID’s Cooperative Development Program works with 11 partnership organizations focused on cooperative development.
ACDI/VOCA, based in Washington, D.C. focuses on effective economic and social development projects in food security, agriculture, and business development.
U.S. Overseas Cooperative Development Council (OCDC) was founded with the belief that cooperative businesses can stabilize developing nations. A subsidiary of the OCDC is the International Cooperative Research Group, which conducts applied research useful to document the impact of cooperatives and inform best practices in cooperative development.
Land O’Lakes VENTURE37 initiative provides technical expertise to agricultural development projects around the world to develop competitive markets and resilient cropping systems that provide access to nutritious quality food.
World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) engages in advocacy, development, and education to champion and grow credit unions and cooperative finance worldwide through advocacy on behalf of the global financial cooperative movement. The organization seeks to achieve better regulatory outcomes and leverage a network of credit unions to support financial markets in growing economies, and assist in the digital transformation
International Cooperative Alliance (ICA) is a non-governmental organization, which provides a global voice and forum for knowledge, expertise and coordinated action for and about cooperatives. Formed in 1895, it represents 1 billion cooperative members belonging to 3 million cooperatives world-wide. The ICA seeks to develop relationships and partnerships among its members; facilitate training programs and events, and disseminate knowledge and research about cooperatives operating throughout world.