Jason Budge Humanities and Social Science
Comparing Worker Experiences in Conventional and Cooperative Workplaces
My research project seeks to compare worker experiences from cooperatives and conventional businesses to discover whether a cooperative workplace is a more effective way to organize labor in regards to happiness and fulfillment. My research will utilize interviews and surveys of workers in comparable cooperative and conventional workplaces in Berkeley and Oakland in order to better understand how workplace structures influence and shape worker happiness and fulfillment. Theoretically, I am drawing from Marx’s arguments on alienation to examine these experiences. My hope is that my research will spur debate on workplace structures and question whether conventional workplaces are in fact the most effective way for workers to be happy and fulfilled. In a larger sense, I hope to demonstrate that there exist a variety of workplace structures and to dispel the myth that there is no alternative to capitalism.