Exploring the links between the practices of forestry cooperatives and the SDGs

Guillotte, C.-A., & J. Charbonneau (2020). "Exploring the Links Between the Practices of Forestry Cooperatives and the SDGs", International Journal of Co-operative Accounting and Management, 3(2), DOI: 10.36830/IJCAM.20207.

Gold Theme

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations in 2015, represent the main global challenges to be met worldwide. Since they are directly influenced by actions taken at the micro level, the commitment of businesses, including cooperatives, to their implementation is very important. In theory, cooperatives that act in accordance with the cooperative principles agree to commit to the sustainable development of their community, as enshrined in the 7th cooperative principle. The latter principle specifies, however, that this commitment is made through policies approved by their members, which means that it depends on decisions made by the collective of members, based on their needs and aspirations. The commitment of cooperatives to sustainable development must, therefore, be demonstrated by concrete actions. This article aims to highlight the existing links between the practices of forestry cooperatives in Quebec and Honduras and the SDGs. We show that the cooperatives under study adopt practices related to all SDGs, except for SDG 14, although their commitment is not yet formalized within their core business. This suggests that they are likely to contribute even more positively to the implementation of the SDGs if they formally commit to them through a collective strategy across their respective networks. Although these results cannot be generalized, we suggest that the collective participation of members in ownership, power and results, characteristic of cooperatives, represent a considerable contribution to the fight against poverty, the reduction of inequalities and the promotion of just, peaceful and inclusive societies.

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