The co-operative model lives in an “in-between” space, with profit-seeking businesses on one side and clearly non-profit or charitable organizations on the other. For this reason, policymakers have long been challenged to devise appropriate taxation policy for co-ops.

On some occasions, they have been swayed by arguments that co-ops merit accommodations relative to the benchmark corporate tax system. But at others, they have been influenced by competitors who suggest co-ops are no different than for-profit businesses.

Research at the CCSC examines the historical and present-day arguments for taxing co-ops differently and resourcefully using the tax system to support the development of the co-operative sector.