Exit to Community (E2C) is an effort to develop alternatives to the standard model of the startup "exit." Rather than simply aiming for an acquisition by a more established company or a public stock offering, could startups aim to mature into ownership by their community of stakeholders? Through policy research, popular education, and partnership with interested startups, MEDLab is exploring pathways for making the answer a yes.

This work occurs in partnership with Zebras Unite and MEDLab community fellow Danny Spitzberg, with support from the Open Society Foundations.

 A Community PrimerRead the Zine

The E2C zine, Exit to Community: A Community Primer, is now available for free, digitally and in print. Get a copy here.

Basics

Research

Related

Drawing by Sita Magnuson

Exit to Community: Peer Learning Cohort

Sept. 2, 2020

Our next initiative is a peer learning cohort—but first, we need to hear your story so we can serve you and your community! Fill out this survey We're doing research because we don't know yet what people need in practice to successfully Exit to Community. Why a cohort? People told...

Exit to Community: A Community Primer

Exit to Community: A Community Primer

Aug. 31, 2020

DOWNLOAD: SCREEN / BOOKLET What is a startup for? Who are startups for? The usual answers begin sounding strange the more you think about them. A startup is kind of like a child, some say. Founders pour themselves and their resources and energy into the thing—but then, unlike a child,...

Drawing by Sita Magnuson

Exit to Community: Meet the Zine

Monday, August 31, 2020 11 a.m.-noon Mountain Time Webinar To join, register at Crowdcast Starting with a call for "Exit to Community ” in September 2019, we have been exploring what this new option for startups might look like and how to get started. Looking back, what have we learned?...

Network drawing by Sita Magnuson

Exit to Community: Industry-Wide Accountability

Thursday, August 27, 2020 [updated] 10-11:00 a.m. Mountain Time Webinar Video archive , collaborative notes We hear about corporate social responsibility a lot, and the need for accountability in practice—not just in talk—is more important than ever. This webinar explores how broad-based ownership is being used to create more accountable...

Illustration by Sita Magnuson

Cooperative Design: How Co-ops Center Their Members to Build Better Products, Faster

July 15, 2020

In 1948, ten workers at an Iowa meatpacking plant began Dupaco Credit Union by putting their mutual trust and around $150 in a shoebox. In 2017, I attended a credit union conference where Dupaco’s head of marketing David Klavitter said his key metric is still just as simple: 0% stock...

Illustration by Sita Magnuson

Exit to Community: Cooperative Product Design

Tuesday, July 21, 2020 10-11:30 a.m. Mountain Time Webinar View the video recording of the event here and the collaborative notes document here . As inclusive design practices catch on, people in building tech tools are asking, "Who really manages the product roadmap? Who ultimately benefits?" This session features leaders...

Exit to Community

Exit to Community: Community Ownership in a Pandemic

Tuesday, June 9, 2020 10-11:30 a.m. Mountain Time Webinar View the video recording of the event here and the collaborative notes document here . The COVID-19 crisis presents the greatest threat to community-based business in generations. But what if their employees and neighbors had the tools to get through this...

Exit to Community

Exit to Community: Distributed Governance

Friday, May 8, 2020 10-11:00 a.m. Mountain Time Webinar View the video recording of the event here and Sita Magnuson's graphic recording here . In the new world made by the coronavirus, there has been a lot of discussion recently about online collaboration and work. But what about governance? If...

When Co-ops and Venture Capital Meet

Tuesday, April 28, 2020 11-12:00 a.m. Mountain Time Webinar View the video recording of the event here . It is a common assumption that cooperative business and venture capital financing don't mix. And there is good reason for this. Venture capital uses investor ownership to drive companies toward a quick,...

Exit to Community: A Community Primer

Exit to Community Poster Available Now

March 6, 2020

After months of travel, events, webinars, and more, we're proud to announce the first print publication related to our Exit to Community project : a printable poster and booklet called Exit to Community: A Community Primer . We've worked hard to produce a concise, information-dense artifact which briefly outlines the...

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