Co-operative studies

Co-operative studies [кооперативна наука; kooperatyvna nauka]. The first Ukrainian works of a statistical-descriptive and then of a historical nature on the co-operative movement dealt with consumer co-operatives: Mykola Ziber wrote the monograph Potrebitel'nye obshchestva (Consumer Societies, 1869) and studies of the theoretical foundations and the history of co-operatives, and Mykola Ballin published Pervaia pamiatnaia knizhka potrebitel'nykh obshchestv (The First Commemorative Book of Consumer Societies, 1870). The first study of credit unions was Pavlo Chubynsky's monograph about the savings-and-loan association founded by Hryhorii Galagan in Sokyryntsi in 1871, which was published in Zapiski of the Southwestern Branch of the Imperial Russian Geographic Society. After a long interval the works of two theoreticians and practical organizers of co-operatives appeared: Vasyl Domanytsky's brochures Tovarys'ki kramnytsi (Society Stores, 1904) and Pro sil's'ku kooperatsiiu (On Rural Co-operatives, 1906) and Osyp Yurkevych's brochures. The history of credit unions was presented in Serhii Borodaievsky's Crédit populaire en Russie (1900), Volodymyr Kosynsky's Ukraïns'ka kooperatsiia (Ukrainian Co-operation, 1918), and the works of Heorhii Kryvchenko and others. Fedir Shcherbyna's Iuzhno-russkie arteli (South Russian Artels, 1880) dealt with manufacturing co-operatives in the Ukrainian labor tradition, and Mykola V. Levytsky (founder of the first agricultural artels) discussed productive co-operatives in Pro khliborobs'ki spilky (On Agricultural Associations, 1919).

During Ukrainian struggle for independence (1917–20) research on co-operatives developed rapidly and emphasized the peculiarities of the Ukrainian co-operative movement. In 1917 the Ukrainian Central Co-operative Committee was established in Kyiv to pursue such research. Such famous Ukrainian economists as Mykhailo Tuhan-Baranovsky, Kostiantyn Vobly, Kost Matsiievych, Borys Martos, and Valentyn Sadovsky belonged to the committee. After 1920 similar research was conducted by the co-operative section of the Society of Economists in the All-Ukrainian Academy of Sciences, by the Chair of Co-operative Studies at the Kyiv Co-operative Institute, which published five volumes of Pratsi in 1927–30, and by central associations, which published a wide range of periodicals (see Co-operative press). By the end of the 1920s, when the Ukrainian co-operatives lost their autonomy, research on co-operatives almost ceased in Soviet Ukraine. Only practical handbooks and popular literature on co-operatives were published.

In Western Ukraine prior to the First World War research on the co-operative movement was conducted by the Provincial Audit Union, which published the journal Ekonomist. In the 1920s and 1930s such research was pursued by the Society of Ukrainian Co-operators in Lviv and by the Economic, Sociological, and Statistical Commission of the Shevchenko Scientific Society. Émigré scholars of the Economics and Co-operative Department of the Ukrainian Husbandry Academy and of the Society of Ukrainian Co-operators in Poděbrady studied the subject of co-operation. Since the Second World War the subject has been studied at Ukrainian institutions of higher education and at the economics commissions of the Shevchenko Scientific Society and the Ukrainian Academy of Arts and Sciences.

The most eminent Ukrainian theoretician of the co-operative movement was Mykhailo Tuhan-Baranovsky, who worked out the theoretical foundations of the concept of a co-operative enterprise and the classification of its branches in such works as Sotsial'nye osnovy kooperatsii (The Social Foundations of Co-operation, 1915, translated into many languages), Kooperatsiia, ïï pryroda ta meta (Co-operation: Its Nature and Aim, 1918), and Produktsiini pidpryiemstva kooperatyv z tochky pohliadu kooperatyvnoï teoriï (Producer Co-operative Enterprises from the Viewpoint of Co-operative Theory, 1919). Serhii Borodaievsky was a historian and theoretician of the co-operative movement, particularly of the credit-union movement. He published such works as Kooperatsiia sredi slavian (Co-operatives among the Slavs, 1921), Istoriia kooperativnogo kredita (A History of Co-operative Credit, 1923), and Istoriia kooperatsiï (A History of the Co-operative Movement, 1925). Kostiantyn Vobly gave much attention to the subject and published Budivnycha kooperatsiia ta finansuvannia ïï (Building Co-operatives and Their Financing, 1919), Kooperatyvnyi kramoobih Ukraïny 1923–24 – 1926–27 (Co-operative Trade in Ukraine from 1923–4 to 1926–7, 1927), and Studiï do metodyky kooperatyvnoï statystyky (Studies on the Methodology of Co-operative Statistics). Borys Martos wrote studies on the classification of co-operatives, the limits to the growth of consumer co-operatives, and other theoretical and organizational topics. In Galicia the leading organizers—Andrii Zhuk, Yuliian Pavlykovsky, Karlo Kobersky, and Ostap Lutsky—wrote studies of the ideology and history of the Ukrainian co-operative movement. Petro Pozharsky, Pavlo Vysochansky, and E. Deshko wrote lengthier historical outlines of the movement. Illia Vytanovych and Andrii Kachor specialized in the history of co-operatives in Western Ukraine.

Among the investigators of particular branches of the co-operative movement the following should be mentioned: Ivan Ivasiuk and Khrystofor Baranovsky on credit unions; Oleksander Mytsiuk, Viktor Domanytsky, Yevhen Khraplyvy, and I. Batiuk on agricultural co-operatives; Ivan Petrushevych, A. Serbynenko, and Dmytro Pisniachevsky on consumer co-operatives; Ivan Feshchenko-Chopivsky on manufacturing co-operatives; L. Bobyr-Bukhanovsky on co-operative financing; K. Mykhailiuk, Andrii Palii, and Andrii Mudryk on dairy co-operatives. In addition, Valentyn Sadovsky, Heorhii Kryvchenko, Serhii Ostapenko, Petro Kovanko-Kovankovsky, Volodymyr Kosynsky, Ivan Zamsha, and others gave some attention to the co-operative movement in their writings.

Illia Vytanovych

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 1 (1984).]




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