Cooperatives Build a Better World: The 2025 International Year of Cooperatives theme

20 Jun 2024

The International Cooperative Alliance has announced Cooperatives Build a Better World as the theme for the 2025 UN International Year of Cooperatives (IYC2025), showcasing the enduring global impact cooperatives have everywhere. This theme puts a spotlight on how the cooperative model is an essential solution to overcome many global challenges and continues to play an important role in accelerating efforts to implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.

Yesterday, 19 June 2024, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution proclaiming 2025 as the International Year of Cooperatives (watch from 02:44:05 recording of the UNGA Session). Draft UN resolution A/78/L.71 on the International Year of Cooperatives 2025 can be found here. The text recommends ways to celebrate and encourages all Member States, the United Nations, and relevant stakeholders to leverage this event to promote cooperatives’ contribution to social and economic development. Among others, Member States and cooperatives are also invited to consider establishing national committees to coordinate and prepare for all IYC2025 activities.

"Cooperatives are present in every aspect of our lives, and answering to each of the SDGs, everywhere," said Ariel Guarco, President of the International Cooperative Alliance. "This is the second time in history that the UN has dedicated an international year to cooperatives, and this is not a coincidence. Driven by concern for all communities, cooperatives have successfully adapted to overcome the evolving challenges of our time, and have shown repeatedly throughout history, that together we are indeed building a better world."

"The decision by the General Assembly could not be timelier. The innovative contributions of cooperatives for sustainable development will be crucial for accelerating progress in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals as we approach 2030" said Li Junhua, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs. "The second International Year of Cooperatives will be an opportunity to mobilize all stakeholders to support and expand cooperatives everywhere, strengthening their contributions for a better world."

A soft-launch of the IYC2025 will be conducted on 9 July 2024 during the UN High-Level Political Forum at the UN Headquarters in New York. This hybrid event will be hosted by the UN Committee for the Promotion and Advancement of  Cooperatives (COPAC) in collaboration with the Permanent Mission of Mongolia to the United Nations. Organisers plan to unveil the IYC2025 theme, roadmap of the event and communications materials that the UN teams are currently developing. This also will mark the International Day of Cooperatives, celebrated annually on the first Saturday of July globally. For more information about the hybrid event, please visit.

Join the official launch of the International Year of Cooperatives

The official launch of the IYC2025 will take place in New Delhi, India, during the ICA Global Cooperative Conference and General Assembly, scheduled for 25-30 November 2024 in the presence of global leaders seeking to inspire cooperators worldwide. This will be followed by a year-long celebration of cooperatives' impact on society, reflecting on achievements, and what actions come next to strengthen the cooperative movement and improve lives for everyone. The International Cooperative Alliance plans to:

  • increase the visibility of cooperatives and raise public awareness about their contributions to sustainable development, 
  • promote the growth and development of cooperatives through capacity-building initiatives, knowledge-sharing, and collaborative partnerships.
  • advocate for enabling environment and supportive legal and policy frameworks for strengthening their entrepreneurial ecosystem
  • inspire young people to join the movement and promote the impact cooperatives have on building a better world.

The United Nations General Assembly declared the first International Year of Cooperatives in 2012, and called to highlight the contributions of cooperatives to socio-economic development, particularly their impact on poverty reduction, employment generation and social integration. Cooperatives around the world celebrated this inaugural event under the theme Cooperative Enterprises Build a Better World to encourage the growth and establishment of cooperatives all over the world.

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