Project of the Day: DIWO Co-op

Campus cebada buttons

Image: Buttons made for last year’s Campo de Cebada’s Summer University 

DIWO Co-op is a worker-owned co-op located in Madrid, Spain. Recently, they were featured on the Spanish TV program “La Aventura del Saber“. This program forms part of a larger project, “La Aventura de Aprender“, which analyses the ways in which communities learn from each other and give back to the Commons.

The following video will be both familiar and inspirational to anyone who has ever been involved in a cooperative enterprise. In the interview, two of DIWO’s worker-owners, Mamen Martín and Rosana Fernández, talk about cooperativism and different forms of collaboration contrasted with individualism, and the differences between traditional enterprises and co-ops. Don’t miss Martín’s tale about the financial advisor that urged them *not* to become a co-op because “they’d lose control of their company”, and their reaction.

The DIWO contingent misspoke twice during the interview, resulting in two small errors. The original 15 M march was in 2011, not 2012; they also flubbed a point at the end while talking about the role of the co-op’s general assembly. Those errors have been corrected in the subtitle track for the video, in the interest of clarity and accuracy. After the vid, we’ve included some of the info from their website.

Hit the “close captions” button at the bottom right to active our English subtitles for this video.

There are some very interesting plans coming up with DIWO for this fall, namely the launch of DIWOShop, in collaboration with Guerrilla Translation and Freepress Coop, to provide free translation and promotion services to a selection of ethical and environmentally-oriented enterprises.  (Disclaimer: I’m Guerrilla Translation’s founder).

The following is extracted from DIWO’s website:

DIWO/We are:

diwo coop is a worker owned co-op specializing in custom button/badge production and other kinds of merchandise for distribution. The co-op is made up of people with various professional backgrounds. We formed our project to help promote communications by and for groups, organizations and companies working for the common good and aimed at building more ethical and sustainable societies. We created diwo coop in 2012, building on and including our previous project, platypusLab, because we’re convinced that collaboration is the best way forward from the current situation of widespread precariousness.

DIWO/We do: 

platypusLab, specializing in badge/button production and distribution of customized merchandise since 2008, became part of diwo coop in 2012. We distribute within the EEC all of the following, among other items:

– Custom button badges
– Custom and neutral lanyards and accreditation holders
– Event security wristbands
– Textile screen printing
– Custom coffee or beer mugs





Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.