The Berlin Institute for Co-operative Studies (BICS) is a non-profit institution in the form of a research association (e.V.). It receives basic funding through private means and research projects and is thus dependent on the active support of cooperative practice. Cooperatives in Berlin and Central and Eastern Germany are organized in a support society. The Supporting Association of the BICS at the Humboldt University of Berlin e.V. is the sole financial supporter of this funding. It obtains the funds to support the work of the Institute through membership fees, donations and one-time grants. In addition, the BICS receives project-related funds as a research institution for the implementation of research projects after submitting applications to the usual German research funding institutions and foundations.
The organs of the Supporting Association are the Executive Board, the Advisory Board, and the General Assembly. The Executive Board and the Advisory Board include leading personalities of the German cooperative sector who, beyond their activities in the Supporting Association, provide important suggestions and contributions to the work of the Institute.
The support provided to the BICS by members of the Supporting Association and active participation in its committees creates a close link between scientific research and cooperative practice. This has already led to a wide range of projects with clearly positive benefits for both sides.