This paper addresses the distinction between core members and common members in farmer cooperatives in China in terms of the allocation of ownership rights, decision rights, and income rights. Empirical results from a multiple case study indicate that the life cycle and the governance characteristics of farmer cooperatives in China differ from cooperatives in the West world. The genesis of cooperatives in China is due to entrepreneurial farmers and the government, rather than the bottom-up, collective action process of many small farmers. The distribution of equity capital, decision rights, and income rights is quite skewed towards core members. We conclude that the development of cooperatives in China adapts to the local economic and cultural environment and goes via an alternative way to cooperatives in the Western world.

China, common member, core member, farmer cooperatives, governance
Erasmus Research Institute of Management
hdl.handle.net/1765/31059
ERIM Report Series Research in Management
Erasmus Research Institute of Management

Liang, Q.X, Hendrikse, G.W.J, Huang, Z, & Xu, X. (2012). Core and Common Members in Chinese Farmer Cooperatives (No. ERS-2012-002-STR). ERIM Report Series Research in Management. Erasmus Research Institute of Management. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/31059