CEARC’s Latest Research Projects

Mental Health and Covid-19: Bridging The Gap

Daphne Rixon (together with Dr. Heidi Heigand, Dalhousie University) received a SSHRC - Covid 19 Partnership Engagement Grant in the amount of $24,960. The partner is Healthy Minds Co-operative in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia and the topic is: Mental Health and Covid-19: Bridging The Gap. This project will focus on developing an effective bridging framework to reduce the wait time between initial calls and planned clinical support.

Credit Unions’ Response to Covid-19

This is a new research project undertaken by Dr. Marc-Andre Pigeon, University of Saskatchewan and Dr. Daphne Rixon, Saint Mary’s University. As financial co-operatives, credit unions have a reputation of putting their members and communities ahead of short-term profit considerations. They routinely emerge, for example, at the top of national surveys of retail and small business banking customers/members. In their research, Pigeon and Rixon ask whether we can observe evidence of this responsiveness by looking at how a sample of the country’s largest credit unions communicated to their members in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis compared with their big bank competitors? To answer this question, they look at a combination of annual reports and samples drawn from credit union and bank websites at key moments in the pandemic using scraping algorithms developed by the Canadian Hub for Applied Social Research (CHASR) at the University of Saskatchewan.

Integrated reporting, organizational change and management accounting

Dr. Daphne Rixon and Dr. Daniela Senkl (University of Guelph) received a CPA Canada funded grant of $8,000 from the Canadian Academic Accounting Association to examine the “How does integrated reporting transform organizational decision-making?” The project will be based on a case study of a Canadian co-operative that has adopted International Integrated Reporting.

SSHRC Grant awarded to CEARC and CMC

Measuring Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the Canadian Co-operative Sector

June 28, 2019 / The Sobey School of Business is pleased to announce that Dr. Daphne Rixon, Executive Director and Dr. Fiona Duguid, Research Fellow, Centre of Excellence in Accounting and Reporting for Co-operatives (CEARC) have been awarded a Partnership Engage Grant of $24,900 to work with Co-operatives Mutuals Canada (CMC) on research that helps determine ways to measure how the Canadian co-operative sector is contributing to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

"With the Sobey School's commitment to the Principles of Responsible Management Education, and the demonstrated support for the UN's SDGs among our faculty and students, this project is an exemplary case of our research having the potential for real-world impact with purpose," said Dean Harjeet Bhabra.

There is increased interest in these Goals (often shortened to SDGs) in Canada and around the world, and a growing recognition of their importance in building stability, resiliency, peace and public security. Co-operative businesses, anecdotally, have tended to have a reputation for community responsiveness and social responsibility that aligns well with these goals.

There is a key need for empirical, standardized data that can be reported by each co-operative to their members, as well as aggregated into a national dataset describing the co-operative sector as a whole. These data points can then be reported to the Federal government to support its’ measurement and reporting of the SDGs on the global stage.

After decades of work with the United Nations, 193 countries, including Canada, adopted The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in 2015. Since the signing, there has been a growing need and interest in how to measure and report on the SDGs. The Canadian co-operative sector does not have a mechanism to design, measure and report on the sector’s SDG impact. This Partnership Engage Grant (PEG) aims to answer the following: how is the Canadian co-operative sector contributing to Canada’s measurement and reporting on SDGs’ impact?

This project is comprised of online discussion boards, a survey, focus groups and through participatory action research ensures not only the central role of the community partner, CMC, in decision-making and intellectual leadership, but also ensures the development of practical, timely and beneficial SDG indictors that can be used by the co-operative sector.

Total funding for the project is $56,900 which includes $24,900 from SSHRC as well as in-kind funding of $15,000 from CEARC, $15,000 from CMC and $2,000 from IRECUS, Universite de Sherbrooke. Dr. Rixon is responsible for overall management of the project, Dr. Fiona Duguid, CEARC Research Fellow is the Research Lead and Daniel P. Brunette, Director of Advocacy and Partnerships, CMC is the partner representative.

For more information about this project, please contact Daphne Rixon: or Fiona Duguid:


Tom Webb Publishes New Book

Tom Webb, CEARC founder and former Chair of the Board of Directors has published a new book entitled: From Corporate Globalization to Global Co-operation. Copies may be purchased from

This book is about the need for an alternative to capitalism. But what does that alternative look like? And given the ever-increasing wealth and power of the 1 percent and the fact that corporations are given carte blanche to turn natural resources into profit, is an alternative possible?

Tom Webb argues that a massive shift to social enterprise, primarily co-operatives, is required. More than 250 million people around the world work for co-operatives, and co-operatives impact the lives of three billion people. This model reduces almost every negative impact of capitalism — it is a model that works.

Webb outlines the principles co-operatives need to hold to if they are to be a successful alternative to capitalism and examines the public-policy changes needed to nurture such a transition, but he remains neither wildly optimistic nor unduly pessimistic. A better world is possible, but it is not inevitable.


Report on Impact Released

Education for Values-Based Business: The Co-operative Difference Download a copy now!


Successful Symposium Held

CEARC hosts successful Symposium in London, UK, June 2018. Visit our conference page for more information.

CPI Moves into Second Year

Co-operative Performance Indicators (CPI) embarks on 2nd year of its pilot program. Visit our CPI page for more information.

Call for Papers - International Journal of Co-operative Accounting and Management (IJCAM)

We are currently seeking papers for our inaugural issue of the International Journal of Co-operative Accounting and Management. For guideline and submission information please see our Call for Papers .

Co-operative Research Wins Award

Dr. Daphne Rixon and Dr. Larry Corrigan win the Emerald Literati Network 2018 Award for Excellence. Emerald Publishing manages a portfolio of nearly 300 journals, more than 2,500 books, and over 1,500 teaching cases. Every year, Emerald awards up to three Highly Commended Papers from the previous 12 months. “A dramaturgical accounting of cooperative performance indicators,” co-authored by Drs. Corrigan and Rixon, has been selected for 2018. It was published in Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management. The paper has already been downloaded more than 530 times as of July 20, 2018.

Research Study on Credit Union Commercial Lending

Dr. Daphne Rixon and Dr. Peter Goth have completed a research project exploring the challenges associated with commercial lending by credit unions. Their report has been published by the Filene Research Institute, Madison, Wisconsin,