Date archives "September 2017"

The Case for Local, Community-led Sustainable Energy Programs

Wolfgang Hoeschele: The energy infrastructure that we inherited from the 20th century is one dominated by fossil fuels and uranium, mined in relatively few localities in the world. The distribution and refining of these fuels is tightly held by a few large corporations. Electricity generation typically occurs in plants that hold local or regional monopolies,… Continue reading

Pollinating Prosperity: Michael Shuman on how to incubate generative economies

Most local administrations are promoting start-up incubators whose very models of business development often create a huge leakage for the local economy. Michael Shuman calls for local incubators who have a generative effect on the local economy, which he explains very cogently in this video: ‘Pollinating Prosperity’, presentation by local economic development expert Michael Shuman… Continue reading

Launch Party for Shareable’s New Book and Crowdfunding Campaign

Chris Rankin: On Wednesday, Sept. 13, we celebrated the launch of our new book, “Sharing Cities: Activating the Urban Commons” and crowdfunding campaign, at the Embassy Network house in San Francisco, California. We are grateful to everyone who joined us for a fun and inspiring evening. It gave us a rare opportunity to connect with supporters… Continue reading

The History and Evolution of the Commons

Is it possible to historicize the commons, to describe the evolution of the commons over time? This is our first draft and preliminary attempt to do so. To do this we must of course define the commons. We generally agree with the definition that was given by David Bollier and others and which derives from… Continue reading

Podcast: Could Universal Basic Income Spell the End of Capitalism?

It has been said that it’s easier to imagine the end of the world than to imagine the end of capitalism. That might have been true a decade ago, but today, the end of capitalism is becoming more and more plausible — at times it feels inevitable. In fact, at least half of Americans think… Continue reading

Robin Murray: A very social economist

Robin Murray was an extraordinarily imaginative, radical and humane economist. His wide range of influences included Marxism, Gandhi and the living experiments around the world that inspired him daily – one of the sources of his tremendous, and infectious, optimism and hope. His ideas provide us with the basis not only for the next Labour… Continue reading

OpenROV: Making underwater exploration tools accessible to anyone

A report on OpenROV conducted in the context of the Open Design & Manufacturing project. “OpenROV started in 2001 as a project to make underwater exploration tools accessible to anyone, launched by Eric Stackpole and David Lang. The company shares much of its designs and cultivates a community of hobbyists that help test, modify and… Continue reading

Affluence Without Abundance: What Moderns Might Learn from the Bushmen

Where did things go wrong on the way to modern life, and what should we do instead? This question always seems to lurk in the background of our fascination with many indigenous cultures. The modern world of global commerce, technologies and countless things has not delivered on the leisure and personal satisfaction once promised.  Which… Continue reading

Patterns of Commoning: Films and Videos about the Commons

There are hundreds of worthy films and videos dealing with issues related to the commons in one way or another – forestry, finance, water, copyright, and more. However, the number of them that deal directly with the commons as commons are fairly few. Below, some of the more noteworthy productions of the past five years…. Continue reading

The New Municipal Movements

Eleanor Finley: Just a short time ago, the idea of the United States electing real estate mogul Donald Trump to the presidency seemed almost unthinkable. Yet now that this impossible proposition has come to pass, a new space has opened for visionary thinking. If electing Donald Trump is indeed possible, what other impossibilities might be… Continue reading

Book of the Day: Jackson Rising: The Struggle for Economic Democracy and Black Self-Determination in Jackson, Mississippi

Cooperation Jackson is one of the most interesting Municipalist extitutions (self-organised political assemblies designed to maintain a balance between prefigurative politics and their institutional counterparts) on the scene. Here is the press release for their new book, co-written by Kali Akuno and Ajamu Nangwaya, which chronicles their history, struggles and those of their hometown of Jackson,… Continue reading

The Commons, Short and Sweet

I am always trying to figure out how to explain the idea of the commons to newcomers who find it hard to grasp.  In preparation for a talk that I gave at the Caux Forum for Human Security, near Montreux, Switzerland, I came up with a fairly short overview, which I have copied below.  I… Continue reading

Taxiapp: London’s black cab co-op alternative to Uber

With Uber out of the picture in London — at least temporarily — you would expect to see Platform Coops rising in prominence as a better alternative. While New Economics Foundation is putting a petition forward to the Mayor for a “a mutually-owned, publicly-regulated alternative to Uber.”, the community at Taxiapp are already providing a… Continue reading

Podcast: The Power and Perils of Cooperatives

Institute for Local Self-Reliance: Christopher Mitchell, the director of ILSR’s Community Broadband Networks initiative, interviews Hannah Trostle and Karlee Weinmann, research associates for the Community Broadband Networks and Energy Democracy initiatives, respectively. The three discuss the cooperative model of ownership and how this model can enable investment in gigabit internet connections for their member-owners, but also… Continue reading

Patterns for Decentralised Governance and why Blockchain Doesn’t Decentralise Power… Unless You Design It To

I  recently gave a talk at the re:publica conference in Dublin. Every time I go to one of these internet-and-society conferences I get very grumpy about the blockchain hype, so today I used my stage time to spell out my grumpiness. Here’s what I said… Civilisation ❤️ trusted databases It might help to think of blockchain as… Continue reading

Dmytri Kleiner on the workings of a Venture Commune

Guerrilla Translation’s transcript of the 2013 C-Realm Podcast Bauwens/Kleiner/Trialogue prefigures many of the directions the P2P Foundation has taken in later years. To honor its relevance we’re curating special excerpts from each of the three authors. For our third and final extract, Venture Communist and Miscommunication specialist, Dymtri Kleiner offers a proposal to answer the… Continue reading