Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics vol:85 issue:4 pages:509-530
Membership rates of agricultural co-operatives vary widely across member states of the European Union. Inspired by various strands of literature (institutionalism, social capital theory, literature on transition countries and the ‘software of the mind’), we investigate historical and social determinants of those differences. We find that social capital and the legacy of communism are significantly correlated with the attractiveness of the co-operative sector for farmers, while the Hofstede indicators, measuring deeply rooted cultural values that otherwise are so robust and have correlations with many entrepreneurial and organizational aspects, are not. We describe our analysis and elaborate on the limits and implications of the data used and methodology applied.