Our Team


George Varthalamis


George Varthalamis, Research intern at Institutions for Collective Action, Rotterdam School of Management


Position in relation to project

Research intern


Short biography  

George holds a bachelor’s degree in Food Science from the University of Peloponnese, and an MBA in Agribusiness from the Agricultural University of Athens, Greece. During his Master, he came to realize that agricultural cooperatives and collective business suit him perfectly, because it is his firm belief that cooperatives are the only organizational means through which farmers can overcome their increasingly challenging socio-economic problems. His current research interests center on the life cycle of agricultural cooperatives (LFC), strategy design, and the process of co-creating sustainable collective businesses. George is co-founder of the Co-opAbility Institute (CI), a non-profit organization that helps farmers to co-create cooperatives, educate them about the management and governance of their cooperatives, and facilitate them in building sustainable cooperatives from idea to success. At present, George’s research focuses on the management and governance of agricultural cooperatives, as well as with cooperation between and among individuals and organizations. The analytical lens through which he views cooperatives include Cook’s cooperative Lifecycle Framework (CLF); he conducts in-depth analyses of cooperative life cycles. Since October 2020, he is a member of the Athenian Institute of Anthropos, where he receives training on systemic and dialectic approaches to group processes and dynamics. He has also been trained in Theory U at MIT, Boston, U.S.A. Both of these trainings have helped him significantly in gaining a holistic understanding of the complex challenges and wicked problems currently facing humanity. George’s aim is to help people bring out an effective way of collaborating and facilitate them in building sustainable cooperatives and collective businesses.



Involved in Research Themes

> Formation of institutions for collective action



Cooperation and cooperatives

Business Administration

Cooperative Life Cycle Analysis

Systemic and Dialectical Approaches

Systems Theory

Theory U - Tools and Methodologies for System Transformation

System Dynamics

Wicked Problems

Case study Analysis