Date archives "October 2017"

Patterns of Commoning: WIR Currency – Reinventing Social Exchange

James Stodder and Bernard Lietaer: The Swiss WIR (“We” in German) is the longest surviving social or community currency, sometimes called a complementary currency. (This last name reflects an ambition to supplement rather than replace a national currency.) WIR is not a physical currency per se, but a system of credits and debits. Once a… Continue reading

Book of the Day: Funding the Cooperative City

Funding the Cooperative City explores how citizen initiatives, cooperatives, non-profit companies, community land trusts, crowdfunding platforms, ethical banks and anti-speculation foundations step out of the regular dynamisms of real estate development and arrange new mechanisms to access, purchase, renovate or construct buildings for communities. It offers a helpful set of resources not only for community… Continue reading

What comes before consent?

If I could reduce the complexity of violence down to a linear continuum, it might look something like: assault → murder → genocide → ecocide. I’ve been wondering about what the spectrum of violence looks like further to the left, before assault, before harassment, before intimidation. What are some small acts of violence that we… Continue reading

Coordinating Distributed Systems

Despite running an institute focused on politics & technology, I don’t actually spend much time thinking about politics or technology. Instead, I spend most of my time thinking about how to optimise the way that information travels through networks of people. Tackling this task, I think, is what it really means to attempt education at… Continue reading

The Internet and Everyone: Celebrating John Chris Jones at 90

I’m reposting the piece below to celebrate the 9oth birthday (on 7 October) of john chris jones. For jones, writing and living are still intertwined in a sublime but grounded way. I’ve been re-reading “the internet and everyone” by john chris jones. I’ve been astonished once again by the sensibility of an artist-writer-designer whose philosophy – indeed… Continue reading

7 Reasons Why Berlin is a Successful Sharing City

Andreas Arnold: Germany’s capital city Berlin has a thriving sharing and collaborative economy, thanks in part to think-and-do tank OuiShare. Since 2012, the group has facilitated a lively exchange of dialogue and action in many different formats, which has led to a strongly connected network of over 200 different projects and more than 1,000 individuals. In… Continue reading

Exploring the Catalan Integral Cooperative in the Age of Crisis

Last year I went to Catalonia to conduct a field-study of one of the most interesting cooperative projects which have emerged in Europe in the age of crisis: the Catalan Integral Cooperative (CIC). My colleagues at the P2P Foundation and I have long been interested in exploring the ‘CIC model’ as an organizational template for… Continue reading

Belonging is a superpower – Patterns for decentralised organising

If you work in any type of co-op, or non-hierarchical group, with open and inclusive values and aspirations for horizontal management, this post is for you. It summarises a workshop from the founders of Loomio, at which they shared their distilled wisdom for effective collaboration within groups. You’ve probably heard of Loomio, the simple but effective… Continue reading

Team Human: Richard Heinberg “There’s No App For That”

Playing for Team Human today is Post Carbon Institute fellow Richard Heinberg. Richard is the co-author of Our Renewable Future and most recently, the manifesto, There’s No App For That. On today’s show Richard and Douglas challenge the idea that technological “progress” is a panacea for solving systems-level crises like climate change. Richard’s work calls on us to look at the… Continue reading

Inter-generational Collaborative Platforms

At OPEN 2017 one of the open space sessions which was proposed by Phil Carey focused on “Inter-generational Collaborative Platforms”. Here Phil explains what was discussed and the ‘call to action’ that developed from the session. Phil Carey: We live in a world that needs to accommodate an extra 3 billion people within 50 years…. Continue reading

It’s Time for a “Participatory” Democracy Instead of our “Consumer” One

How can democracies use technologies to strengthen themselves? Answers are emerging around the world, with the central theme being that technology can make politics more engaging, successful and legitimate by enabling people to become active producers of political outcomes instead of passive consumers.  Devin Balkind writes about how technology can advance participatory democracy practices while citing policy-led… Continue reading

Patterns of Commoning: How the Bangla-Pesa Tapped the Value of an Informal Community

People usually don’t realize that money is an invention that works only because a community stands behind it, willing to use it in exchanges for goods and services. Most currencies are creatures of national governments that manage and back them. But what if a poorer community created its own currency to foster social exchange? That’s… Continue reading

The Ancient Norwegian “Klyngetun”

Norway’s Land Reform of 1859 was like America’s Land Ordinance of 1785 — planning based on surveys and private property, not around the land itself and community. Its a good time to revisit! – Ross Chapin The image, a painting by Nikolai Astrup named “Soleinatt”, is from a Norwegian “klyngetun”. In Western and Southern Norway… Continue reading

Urban commons initiatives in the city of Ghent: a Commons Transition Plan by Bauwens

Monica Bernardi, writing for LabGov gives a well structured overview of Michel Bauwens’ Commons Transition work in Ghent.  Monica Bernardi: Commons represents an issue which has been subject of many studies and discussions. LabGov used to deal with the topic of the commons and its co-founders themselves (Prof. Sheila Foster and Prof. Christian Iaione) talk of  “The City… Continue reading

Own everything! Together!

We live in times of high political turbulence. Surveying flailing governments from Spain to the United States, it seems a good moment to face up to the evidence of system failures that face us. Millions going to food banks or unable to afford decent housing in the richest countries in the world reveals a systems failure. An… Continue reading

Book of the Day: Integral Ecology: Toward a Perma-Circular Society

The following text was written by Christian Arnsperger and was originally published in Permacircular Horizons. Christian Arnsperger: My colleague Dominique Bourg (also from the University of Lausanne) and myself have just released a new book in French, entitled Ecologie intégrale: Pour une société permacirculaire(translation: Integral Ecology: Toward a Perma-Circular Society), published in Paris by Presses Universitaires de France. It’s… Continue reading