Article from the Portal de la Economía Solidaria, Spain

An interview with its director, Juan Pedro Velázquez-Gaztelu, serves to review his journey during this time. Posted in Cambio16 by Juan Emilio Ballesteros

The magazine Alternativas Económicas celebrates its tenth anniversary. Alternativas económicas is a magazine that addresses economic issues with rigor, independence and didactic eagerness, always with an eye on the interest of citizens. And it is that the vast majority of everyday issues have an economic background: pensions, education, health, climate emergency, prices, wages, mobility, care …

The magazine, which is published monthly in paper and also in digital format, has its editorial offices in Barcelona and delegations in Madrid and Valencia. The publishing company is an associated work cooperative (Alternativas Económicas SCCL), made up of more than 90 members, of which 7 are at the same time workers of the journal. The cooperative formula is the best guarantee of our independence, since it is the workers themselves who have control of the company and the editorial line of the publication.

Alternativas Económicas is part of the Solidarity Economy through its membership of the Xarxa d’Economia Solidària de Catalunya.

In an interview with Cambio16, its director, Juan Pedro Velázquez-Gaztelu, takes stock of this journey and anticipates the changes planned for the future of the publication. We collect below some of their answers.

Photo: Cambio16


What is your assessment of this anniversary?
The balance is very positive. We have managed to consolidate the project from the editorial and business point of view in an extremely competitive market such as the press. We have 2,000 subscribers and our brand is increasingly known in the areas we address: teachers, students, economists, professionals, trade unionists… The cooperative publishing the magazine is healthy and we have no debts. We have achieved a good balance in our sources of income: subscriptions, which is the main one, sales in kiosks and advertising. We have more than 90 partners-collaborators, equivalent to the shareholders in public limited companies, whose support has been fundamental to move forward. Alternativas Económicas is also a company that works with freedom, dignity and a spirit of solidarity.

He has just been appointed director of the publication, which begins a new stage. What are your priorities?
The most immediate is the transition to our new website, which will be much more attractive and dynamic than the previous one and with more content. In the medium term we have several important challenges ahead, including continuing to grow in the number of subscribers and geographically diversifying the magazine’s sales. We would like to extend to the whole country the good reception that the magazine has had in Catalonia, where our newsroom is located and where we have half of our readers. And, of course, grow in turnover to better reward the workforce. We deserve it.

The cooperative press has reacted to the crisis by maintaining its activity, preserving employment and articulating with other media and actors of the social and solidarity economy. Is it time to expand the field of action?
Our magazine pays special attention and gives voice to those who advocate for ways of doing economics that put people ahead of profits. But we are not a magazine exclusively of social and solidarity economy. We have the field very open from the beginning. We are fundamentally pro-European, feminist and defenders of the environment and social justice.

To read the full interview, visit this link (in Spanish).