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Summary

  • Working with the IT department at University of Technology Sydney (UTS)
    • Its an extensive list that will need to be prioritized 
    • Will look at what's in existence already to leverage
    • UTS will not be involved in the codesign 
  • Needs
    • interested in the governance and learning commons
  • Codesign plans
    • Robyn will ask members on an area to focus on in codesign and get back to us, and also figure out the separation between what we're doing and what UTS is doing
    • In the meantime, Dana will work on guidance documents
    • Start on a survey with 3 questions for the members, and then last question would be to ask if they'd be interested in joining codesign process
    • We can co-design the activities with the members themselves
  • To-do
    • For IDRC

      • Send information around budgeting - how many people we can afford to recruit

      • Create options for activities

      • Send survey question suggestions (3) to Robyn, description of project, also overview of co-design activities so people know what they’re signing up for

    • For Coop Life
      • Ask members which areas to focus co-designs around
      • Send information and prioritization list made with UTS
  • Introductions
  • Update on the project 
    • PCC website
    • Co-design with SEWA
  • Updates from The Cooperative Life
    • Wish list for platform co-op (sent 15/08/2018)
      • How were these gathered?
  • Co-design process
    • “Embedded” co-design
    • Recruiting participants - coop members
    • Facilitation
    • UTS involvement?
  • Scope of the project
    • prioritize/choose areas of focus


Notes

    • Robyn - started coop in aging and disability
      • 100 staff
      • Not all are members
      • 30 members out of that 100
    • UTS = University Technology Sydney
    • IDRC update
      • Focus on PCC website
      • Codesign with SEWA in Gujarat India
      • Now we’re ramping up more codesign with other partners
    • Robyn
      • Is what you’re trying to do… 5 coops we’re working with, find similarities in those, and that will be the project that IDRC can share? 
    • Dana
      • That is something we’re trying to do, mostly because its the scope of the project, so we are trying to find similarities between the coops
      • We didn’t want to limit ourselves in terms of understanding the needs of the coops, hopefully this project will have life beyond the 2 years
      • One piece - reviewing the doc you had sent us where you listed of features and things - I noticed there’s a lot in there about training, fact sheets, and things like that
      • One of the things we’re talking about is learning commons, where educational information can be generated, stored, shared between coops, among coops, things like that
      • Now we’re just starting.. We’re not sure what the other coops want to focus on
      • At SEWA, it was definitely a learning commons for the federation of coops
        • Robyn - some of the stuff is just going to be for us, we’re talking with UTS to get a grant 
        • Something that might be similar for all of us is governance, democratic decision making, those types of things
        • It could be generic, could be a good thing to have
          • Dana - at SEWA, they already had a system working for them already, but that doesn’t mean - other coops may want to want governance tool
          • The other thing about this project is that because of the scope, in some cases, we may be pulling together things that exist rather than starting from scratch
      • I was curious - you had put together that doc - how was it generated?
        • Robyn - conversations with the board about our needs
        • But I suppose we had gone the next step on that with UTS
        • We’d been working with the IT department with UTS about what their needs are from a platform perspective, so I can send you that document we’ve worked on
        • Its quite an extensive list, we still have to prioritize that
        • We’re going for a grant - coop research development grant (nothing to do with coops) - need to get an industry partner, 3M for 3 years - we could probably align codesign stuff with that
        • Can send document for content we had worked through
      • Dana - how do you see their role in terms of codesign?
        • Robyn - They’re happy to build it, and to help with the implementation - but not so much the codesign
        • With the codesign, I see you’re talking about facilitators.. How does that work?
        • We can put together people, we can have someone help us through the process
      • Dana - embedded codesign
        • We are trying this process - facilitation can come from the coop itself, but we can provide documentation, things that provide the approach, activities, how to facilitate, what to do.. That content can also be generated through a collaborative way, what would work best with the coop life and the members there
        • If there’s anyone in the coop who might have experience in facilitation or wants to, sometimes that leadership just emerges, so that’s what we’re hoping for
        • Robyn - okay, we can put that call out - there are people who have facilitated in our org
          • Colin: that’s what we thought - that you already had the relationships, structures in your group - rather than bringing in an outside facilitator.. It’s about being in your own group, and being able to do that yourself
          • Robyn - okay we just need some parameters of what to discuss, and what others have done - so we get an idea of what the scope is
          • Dana - we’ve got the process we’ve undertaken at SEWA, we have more generalized guide - toolbox of what you can choose
            • If you think that's feasible 
            • I do! We’re doing self management, because we don't have any money, and that works well
            • Robyn - Don’t need a CEO anymore, I’ve moved over to governance
          • Dana - when you say UTS will help you build…
            • Robyn - They’re not sure whether they’ll build it, they also want to look at what’s in existence based on what we need
            • We’re already using an online database - will students help us develop that system? We need them to delve more deeply into that
            • But I can send you that discussion we’ve had in the proposal 
            • I’m really only on the periphery of the understanding
            • They’ve said to build is the most expensive, to get something in existence and modify is better and cheaper
            • Colin: Michelle’s also been looking at open source tools
            • Robyn - they’re really into the platform thing - they’ll be included in the conversation down the line
            • The funding for age and disability has changed recently, so a lot of the old systems are being wiped out, new systems are able to come in - and that’s only in the last year or two, so this is the time for us to be doing it in this industry
    • Dana - and you have started telling us a bit about history of coop life
      • Robyn
        • We started in 2011, 2012, and couldn’t understand why australia didn’t have such a system
        • Now I’ve realized that the reason is we didn’t go down the coop, government hasn't supported coops because small businesses were promoted as NFP or FP - we can’t distribute
        • To be a NFP, you’re not allowed to distribute
        • So we have to be FP, and you get taxed at a really high rate
        • We have more legal issues to deal with before more coops come in
        • Ongoing battle
        • Worker cooperatives
          • We have Super
          • Worker coops work well in the UK and US because it goes towards a retirement fund. In AUS its compulsory that employers put away a super to go towards your retirement fund
          • There’s no need to have a retirement fund, its built into everyone’s working life
          • A lot of UK and US coops exist is for that retirement fund
          • We exist to provide ppl with a secure job, and give them a well paying job, give them a bonus at the end of the year - but unfortunately what’s happened with tax ruling is because - we’re a for profit - all the money we would distribute had to go to pay for taxes
          • It’s not looking good for other AUS coops right now
          • For us, we work with national disability insurance
          • They get an individual budget, chose their providers, about better care ad more consistent care people are looking for
          • People returning to us as their provider of choice 
          • But sydney is really big, so to have an IT system working together, case management system, meeting system, payroll, edu, democratic governance system - all great to have in one package
          • That’s what we’re looking for - org can run itself
          • Most of our ppl are savvy with computers, but it has to be very simple because they don’t really have the time
          • One login to do lots of different things
          • Colin: Which of those needs are more attuned to the way coop runs? 
            • Robyn - that’s why the governance pack is more of interest to us, and the learning commons
            • Dana - that's great, we want to chose areas to prioritize and focus on - we can chose from the co-design, but if there are clear areas of what you want to focus on, we can have specific sessions
            • Are those the areas we want to focus on? Or would it be better to explore from the members perspective?
            • Robyn - I need to get back to the members and ask them - and also, what’s the separation between what we’re doing and what UTS is doing
            • UTS is doing more generic age and disability stuff
            • We can go back and ask the members 
            • We’ve got a board meeting Tues afternoon, so I can start to talk about that and put some messages out there
            • Dana - In the meantime, we’re working on these guidance documents
      • Recruitment
        • Do you need any help thinking through how to do that?
        • Robyn - that would be good
        • We just put out a generic email, and that doesn’t ignite people’s interest
        • Dana


  • In the past we’ve started with a survey of 3 questions, and the last question is if you’d be interested in a codesign process


          • Robyn - that would be a really good way
          • Dana - it helps to know what you’re signing up to - time commitment, format, even if its a general agenda type of thing
      • We do have some budget - we want to compensate members for their time
        • That will also dictate how many people we recruit


  • Robyn - will you send information on that then?
  • Our hourly rate of pay is around $33-34


    • Robyn
      • Send me some info by email? We can go from there, and work through the next steps, and I can collaborate the group together - ready for April or May - probably more towards May for Easter
    • Dana - sometimes the activities are co-designed with members themselves 
      • Maybe what we can do - we can provide options, and run it through some members before the codesign


To-do for IDRC team:

  • Send information around budgeting - how many people we can afford to recruit
  • Create options for activities
  • Send survey question suggestions (3) to Robyn, description of project, also overview of co-design activities so people know what they’re signing up for


To-do for Robyn:

  • Ask members which area to focus co-design around
  • Send info about UTS
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