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The FairShares concept was created by Dr Rory Ridley-Duff and Cliff Southcombe during 2012. It is based on research undertaken by Rory between 2002 - 2005 for his PhD, then between 2008 - 2011 while co-authoring Understanding Social Enterprise: Theory and Practice with Mike Bull. In the course of these projects, he developed teaching cases with Morgan Killick (at ESP Projects Ltd), Geof Cox (at Geof Cox Associates) and Linda Banks (at Co-operatives UK). These are included in social enterprise courses delivered with Cliff Southcombe at Sheffield Business School and track how co-operative values and principles have become embedded in model rules for multi-stakeholder social enterprise development. By comparing them to model rules that Rory developed while working at Computercraft Ltd in collaboration with Gavin Boby of Democratic Business Ltd, a 'socialisation' perspective on enterprise was clarified. This perspective is expressed through the FairShares Model.

The following slides and case studies provide a quick overview of the history of the FairShares Model.

Two background papers set out the research on which FairShares is built: 'New Frontiers in Democratic Self-Management' published in The Co-operative Model in Practice by the Co-operative Education Trust Scotland, and 'The Social Enterprise Mark: a critical review of its conceptual dimensions' which was awarded Top Research and Knowledge Transfer Paper in Conference at the 34th Institute for Small Business and Entrepreneurship Conference.

The first academic paper on the history of the FairShares Model can be downloaded from the Sheffield Hallam University archive.

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