ICOPED - CEM holds 2nd International Conference on Cooperatives
Davao City, Philippines – The Institute of Cooperatives and Bio-Enterprise Development (ICOPED), in cooperation with the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA) and the Office of Research, University of the Philippines Mindanao (UPMin), held its 2nd International Conference on Cooperatives (ICOOP2015) on October 14-16, 2015 at Waterfront Insular Hotel, Davao City, Philippines. ICOOP2015 was organized simultaneously with the 7th International Conference on Agribusiness Economics and Management (ICAEM2015) of UPMin, with a joint theme, “The Future of Agribusiness and Cooperative Enterprises: Examining Local and Global Contexts.”
ICOOP2015 Participants with Conference Co-chairs, Dr. Zenaida M. Sumalde and Dr. Isabelita M. Pabuayon and the Plenary Speakers from the Cooperative College of Malaysia
This year’s conference, which is a fitting event for the celebration of the Centennial Year of Philippine Cooperatives, aimed to re-emphasize the important role of cooperatives in agribusiness and enterprise development, recognize them as a viable form of enterprise, and identify opportunities for mainstreaming them in the agribusiness sector. It served as a platform for sharing and discussing novel ideas, best practices, and lessons learned along the themes on cooperative enterprise development; cooperative governance, management and human resource development; cooperative initiatives for food security, environmental sustainability and women and youth empowerment; contributions of cooperatives in socio-economic development; cooperative linkages; and financial roles of cooperatives.
The two-day conference gathered more than 200 experts, academicians, cooperators, government officials and practitioners in the areas of agribusiness and cooperatives from eight different countries in the world. It included a panel discussion composed of experts from the fields of cooperatives and agribusiness; plenary sessions with distinguished speakers from the Cooperative College of Malaysia, the Cooperative Development Authority and the Philippine Cooperative Center; and several parallel sessions where 40 researches and case studies on cooperatives were presented.
In one of the plenary sessions, Dr. Eulogio T. Castillo, CDA Administrator, discussed the commitments and strategies to strengthen the ASEAN Center for the Development of Agricultural Cooperatives (ACEDAC). The latter is the principal focal point of ASEAN network of national agricultural cooperative institutions, which aims to implement a Program of Action to promote the development of agricultural cooperatives in the ASEAN Region. Correspondingly, the panel discussion tackled the issue of strengthening Philippine agricultural cooperatives for agribusiness competitiveness. Other interesting topics that were elaborated during the conference were the integrated approach for agricultural cooperative development, the development of human resources and professionalization for the cooperative movement, and the balanced approach in the development and regulation of cooperatives. The conference proper was followed by a study tour to an agri-based cooperative enterprise in Panabo City, Davao del Norte.
ICOOP2015 fostered a fruitful academic discourse in search of possible approaches and ways forward to make the cooperative movement nationally and globally competitive and to empower micro cooperatives, especially the small farmers cooperatives. This is in the light of “the increasing competitive pressures in the agricultural and food supply chains and the recent and upcoming developments such as trade liberalization and globalization, climate change and stresses on the environment and natural resources, increasing concerns for food and nutrition security and safety, and sustainable and inclusive growth” as emphasized by Dr. Isabelita M. Pabuayon, CEM Dean. The conference organizers plan to share the significant outputs and evidence-based policy implications of the knowledge exchange during the conference in the form of a commemorative book, which could be a useful resource for planning and implementing strategies for the international and national cooperative development. (KPQuilloy)
ICOPED-CEM Hosts Seminar on Innovative Cooperative Insurance
As part of the CEM Seminar Series, the Institute of Cooperatives and Bio-Enterprise Development (ICOPED) in cooperation with the Master of Management major in Cooperative Management (MM-CM) students sponsored the “Seminar on Personal Insurance and Benefits through Innovative Cooperative Insurance” at the ICOPED Auditorium on April 20, 2015.The speaker was Ms. Pelagia (Fe) C. Mendones, General Manager, Cooperative Alliance for Responsive Endeavor- Mutual Benefit Association, Inc. (CARE-MBA). CARE-MBA is a local microinsurance provider owned and managed by the members.
Ms. Mendones discussed the history, vision, mission, products and services, and claims of CARE-MBA. CARE-MBA was registered in 2008 with the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) and licensed as mutual benefit association by the Insurance Commission in 2009. CARE- MBA was organized by the concerted effort of ten (10) cooperatives of Quezon Province namely: Farmer MPC, San Luis Development Cooperative, Pearls MPC, St. Jude MPC, Ating Koop MPC, Lopez Quezon Credit Coop, Quezon Power MPC, Quezon Medical Mission Group Hospital and Health Coop, Quezon Provincial Government Officials and Employees MPC, Quezon Federation and Union of Cooperatives (QFUC) and the Cooperative Bank of Quezon Province, in response to the invitation of the Community Development Finance Coalition, Inc (CDFCI) to embark on a Micro-insurance Mutual Benefit Association (MIMBA) Project.
The vision is to be the leading microinsurance mutual benefit association of choice among cooperatives and other formal organized groups in the Philippines while the mission is to provide responsive, timely and sustainable microinsurance products and services as protection to members of partner-cooperatives and other formal organized groups nationwide. Two products are offered by CARE-MBA namely basic life insurance plan (BLIP) and credit life insurance plan (CLIP).
BLIP is a life insurance plus savings. The life insurance provides protection for the family from economic loss due to death and total disability. In savings, a member shall be entitled to an equity value or savings equivalent to fifty percent of the contribution plus interest. Any active member of a cooperative, microfinance institution and organized groups who is 18 but not more than 65 years old is qualified to join. The member, spouse, 2 children under 18 years old, and the biological parents less than 65 years old (if member is single) are covered by the insurance.
CLIP is an insurance product specially designed to insure the loan of the borrower/members of the cooperative, microfinance institutions and other organized groups. The benefits from this product are one hundred percent (100%) return of loan amount to the beneficiaries and for the cooperative is payment of the outstanding loan balance. For both products the benefits are claimable against natural death, accidental death and total and permanent disability. The processing period for the claims of the benefits is 1-3days.
As of December 2014 the CARE-MBA membership consists of 56 cooperatives, 3 organized groups assisted by the Department of Social Welfare Development-Self-employment Assistance-Kaunlaran Program (DSWD-SEA-K) and 23,700 individual members. It is a must that membership in CARE-MBA is through a cooperative, microfinance institution or organized group (individual members are not directly enrolled). The cooperative, microfinance institution or organized group should be a member first of CARE-MBA before an individual member could avail of the microinsurance service of CARE-MBA.
The seminar was attended by the faculty, staff and students of CEM and cooperatives in Los Baños, Laguna (A.B.Peria).
Added by armi April 26, 2015 (5:26PM)
ICOPED-CEM Conducts Cooperative Awareness for the Youth
At the international level, the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA) on the 17th UN International Day of Cooperatives and the 89th ICA International Co-operative Day with the theme “Youth, the Future of Cooperative Enterprise” calls on all co-operative stakeholders to promote the participation of young people in the co-operative movement and to invest in their future leaders. The Institute of Cooperatives and Bio-Enterprise Development (ICOPED), in response to the call to promote the participation of young people developed a project entitled “Cooperative Education Program for the Youth”. The objectives of the project were: a) to create awareness among students on the beginnings, characteristics, values, principles, practices, and benefits in organizing/joining a cooperative and b) to determine the awareness of the youth on cooperatives. The activities were the conduct of Cooperative Orientation Seminar (COS) and a survey on the perception and awareness of the youth on cooperatives.
ICOPED has already conducted COS and survey in Colegio de Los Baños, Trace College and UP Rural High School totaling a number of 325 participants/respondents. The most recent was conducted on March 30, 2015 at the ICOPED Auditorium for the CEM-UPLB students in collaboration with the University of the Philippines Agricultural Economics Circle (UPAEC). The survey was conducted before and after the COS, to get the perception and awareness level on cooperatives, as well as comments and suggestions regarding the Seminar conducted. The 2-hour activity includes lecture and video presentations on the following cooperative topics: Beginnings and History, Nature and Characteristics, what is a Cooperative, Cooperative Values, Principles, Practices and Benefits of Organizing/Joining a Cooperative. A total of 86 students of National Service Training Program (NSTP), UPAEC members and others attended the Seminar. ICOPED Staff involved in the project were Ms. A.B. Peria and Ms. A.R. Quicoy which served as Coordinator and Asst. Coordinator, respectively (ABPeria).
ICOPED Hosts 2nd CEM Seminar Series 2015
The Institute of Cooperatives and Bio-Enterprise Development (ICOPED) in cooperation with the Graduate School (GS) conducted the 2nd CEM Seminar Series 2015 at the ICOPED Auditorium on March 12, 2015 with the title “Advancing the Cooperatives Spirit: The Case and Experience of Sukhothai Thammathirat Open University, School of Agriculture and Cooperatives and its Academic Programs” The speaker was Dr. Anucha Wittayakorn-Puripunpinyoo, Associate Professor and Director of Cooperatives Studies at the said University in Thailand.
The first part of the presentation was about the Academic Programs of Sukhothai Thammathirat Open University (STOU). The University was officially established by Royal Charter on 5 September 1978 as Thailand’s eleventh state university. STOU received its first academic class on 1 December 1980 and began with three schools of study: Educational Studies, Liberal Arts and Management Science. STOU was the first university in Southeast Asia to use the distance learning system. This new system of learning expanded the role of higher education in Thailand by engaging learners who previously had no opportunity to further their education. Since its establishment, STOU has enabled the development of individuals and communities throughout Thailand and beyond. There are 12 schools of study in the university: School of Agricultural Extension and Cooperatives, School of Communication Arts, School of Economics, School of Educational Studies, School of Health Science, School of Human Ecology, School of Law, School of Liberal Arts, School of Management Science, School of Nursing, School of Political Science and School of Science and Technology.
From the beginning, the University has been entirely focused on distance education. Courses are developed by course teams, the main teaching media are printed materials that are mailed to students and in 1985 the idea of e-learning arrived, the use of computers in education. The STOU networks consist of ten Regional Distance Education Centers that provide comprehensive university services in each region of the country.
The second part of the presentation dealt on the cooperative movement in Thailand. According to the Cooperative Societies Act B.E. 2542 (1999) of Thailand “Cooperative is defined as a group of persons who jointly conduct affairs for socio-economic interests on the basis of self-help and mutual assistance, and are registered under the Act". They also have Farmer Groups consisting of persons engaged in agricultural production and conducting activities with the objective of mutual assistance in all agricultural undertakings. However, the farmer groups cannot yet form a cooperative in accordance with the Act unless they satisfy the criteria and methods prescribed in the Cooperative Act. Unlike in the Philippines with 20 types of cooperative, there are only seven types in Thailand namely: agricultural, fishery, land settlement, consumer, thrift and credit, service and credit union. There are 11,174 cooperative and farmer groups as of January 2014. At the National level, consumer, thrift and credit, service and credit union cooperatives could form the League, but the agricultural, fishery and land settlement will have to form first the Provincial Agricultural Federation before it could form one at the National level.
The cooperative businesses were credit, purchasing, marketing and agricultural extension service. In credit the cooperative provides loans to members at low interest rate; in purchasing the cooperative buy all necessities in bulk for resell to members at low price when compared to other stores; in marketing the cooperative collect all of the members’ produce and products and sell in nearby markets; and in agricultural extension service the cooperative provide the members with technical assistances to improve productivity. Cooperatives in Thailand are exempted from paying taxes.(AB Peria)
ICOPED planning workshop 2015
The Institute of Cooperatives and Bio-Enterprise Development (ICOPED) conducted its Planning Workshop on January 23, 2015 at the ICOPED Auditorium. The objective of the planning workshop was to set directions for the year. The Planning Team composed of the faculty, REPS, and Administrative staff of the Institute planned out for one year activities in terms of Instruction, Research, and Extension/Training. The activities identified for instruction were review of COST Courses, promotion of Master of Management major in Cooperative Management (MM-CM) among cooperative stakeholders and planning for the off campus offering of selected COST and Management courses. The activities for extension/training are the following: conduct of Training of Trainers of Accredited Training Providers (ATPs) of the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA), conduct of R.A. 9520 prescribed trainings for Calamba Cooperatives and Livelihood and Development Department (CLDD), Bio-Enterprise Training for coop members, provide assistance to CDA in the preparation for the Celebration of Cooperative Centennial in the Philippines, production of Audio Visual Presentation (AVP) about ICOPED, conduct of International Conference on Cooperatives and Agribusiness in collaboration with UP Mindanao, re-echo Impact Assessment Training for CEM Faculty and Staff, and publication of the Proceedings of the National Conference on Cooperative into a book. Core Extension Program that includes Conduct of Round Table Discussions on Issues Related to Cooperatives and Conduct of Cooperative Awareness Seminars among high School and College students in Los Baños was also laid out. The identified research activities includes the conduct of research under UPLB Basic Research Fund (3 research proposals submitted for funding to OVRCE), follow up research proposals (2 proposals) submitted to UP Center for Integrative and Development Studies (UP-CIDS) and the Cooperative Education and Training Programs of Japan and the Philippines: A Cross Country Comparison. In addition, the writing of monograph from the Cases of cooperatives conducted under the World Class Fund was also included as priority research output of the Institute. Furthermore, a research proposal on “Rapid Content Development and Cooperation between CDA and HEIs” will be prepared for submission to CHED. Core research activities that include writing of working papers on the cases of cooperatives conducted and conduct of new case studies of Cooperatives will be pursued. Administrative concern were also identified and discussed during the workshop.
The workshop was facilitated by the Director, Dr. Zenaida M. Sumalde and Professor Karen P. Quilloy. The outcome of the planning workshop offered opportunities for the staff to exercise responsibility for the future of the organization (ABPeria).