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27th February, 2020

Beyond Precarity? Co-operatives in the Cultural Industries

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Event Details

27th February, 2020
17:00 - 19:00
Tait Building
City, University of London
Northampton Square

This roundtable discussion explores the role co-operatives can play in envisioning and shaping the future of cultural work.

Bringing together academics and members of cultural co-operatives we will look at existing models and practices and discuss how co-ops might contribute to a meaningful alternative to a culture of precarity, competitiveness and individualism. We will consider challenges and limitations faced by co-operatives and reflect on what forms of support might be gathered from within a co-operative movement and on the role of social and cultural policy in dis- or encouraging co-operative practices.


Tamsyn Dent is research fellow at King’s College London. She is working on a collaborative EU project titled DISCE: Developing Inclusive & Sustainable Creative Economies which is looking at improving the growth of the Creative and Cultural Industries across Europe ( She is interested in working structures and cultures within the growing creative economies

Kate Oakley is Professor in Culture and Creative Arts at the School of Culture & Creative Arts, University of Glasgow. Her research interests include the politics of cultural policy, labour in the cultural industries, and inequality. On cultural labour, Kate is currently working with colleagues Greig de Peuter, Nicole Cohen and Enda Brophy on an SSHRC-funded project entitled, ‘Pathways beyond precarity in the cultural and creative industries: sustainable livelihoods and cultures of solidarity’ ( She is also currently working on an ESRC research project, the Centre for Understanding Sustainable Prosperity (

Ieva Padagaite is a member of Blake House (, a video production company working with organisations and campaigns to tell stories that mobilise and persuade people to win progressive victories. Blake House is a small workers cooperative that began as a way to counteract the disillusionment and precarity experienced in the creative industries, by taking ownership and decision making into the hands of creative workers.

Marisol Sandoval is Senior Lecturer at City, University of London. Her research focuses on the politics, potentials, and contradictions of worker co-operatives in the cultural industries (  Currently Marisol is completing the BA Small Grant Project Mapping Cultural Co-operatives. She is also contributing to the SSHRC-funded project, Pathways Beyond Precarity in the Cultural and Creative Industries (

Kayleigh Walsh is a member of Outlandish (, whose organisational mission is to use technology to make the world a better place. Outlandish has spearheaded an inclusive way to co-operate, from the workers deciding how surplus is spent, to starting a digital network of co-ops called CoTech in 2016, and opening the UK’s only co-op focused shared working spaces called Space4. She speaks openly and honestly about the challenges of co-operativism, and actively celebrates its successes.

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