50 Comments Mapping the emerging post-capitalist paradigm, and its main thinkers

  1. AvatarGreg Bloom

    Dudes. Wtf. Almost all dudes.

    Without Elinor Ostrom, without J.K. Gibson-Graham, without Janelle Orsi — and who knows how many others — your post-capitalist landscape of thinkers is not nearly as vivid and revolutionary as you’d wish it to be.

    Please try again!

  2. AvatarGreg Bloom

    Well at least pass on those suggestions. I’d ask Janelle, and other futurist visionaries like Adrienne Marie Brown, who they think should be included.

  3. AvatarKamiel Verwer

    Should we distinguish between living and historical thought leaders?
    For women thought leaders, I think of Arundhati Roy and Jane Goodall.
    I can’t estimate prominence, but I think Robert Kennedy Jr. and Wendell Berry could be mentioned as thought leaders?
    The “economics department” looks good; perhaps Rob Hopkins and Richard Heinberg and Tim Jackson or Paul Mason?
    As for the “new work” there is a lot going on in the Netherlands. (Ronald van ‘t Hof; Society 3.0). Again, I can’t assess global influence – this assessment by the way seems to be a typical “problem” to be solved by the network

  4. AvatarAlex Santander

    Thank you for your hard work and making this accesible.
    However, I belive the work of Nick Srnicek and Alex Williams are a grave omission.

  5. AvatarAnne McCrossan

    It is very sad to observe that not one of those prominent thinkers and influencer names mentioned is a woman. Visceral Business has been developing P2P organisation since 2008. Please have a look at my work.

  6. AvatarTomás Ruiz-Rivas

    I find noteworthy that culture don’t play any role in this scheme. Maybe it’s identified with “Conscience”, but these Beyod Capitalism paradigms seems to be a kind of posthippie melancholy. Oriental values? For real? Can anyone think today in oriental values as revolucionary?
    Subjects are primarily defined in the cultural real, and the conflict of the new (and old) left with conventional culture forms can be its Achilles heel.

  7. AvatarMegan Squire

    RIchard Stallman needs to go between where you have Benkler and Assange. His contributions are extremely important. I also agree with the previous poster about Ostrom.

  8. AvatarStephen

    At this stage, it looks like silly namedropping. Feminism is not a major concern! Never heard of Murray Bookchin and Abdullah Ocalan? One of the few thinkers openening a horizon that is non-statits and postnationalist…

  9. AvatarLarisa

    A little surprising that in 2015 it lacks a category of reproduction/the home as a site of political and economic struggle (and analysis), and it also lacks a category of climate/environment/land.

    It is dangerous to subsume either of those into “economy” or “consumption/production” (if we only see these places as a site of consumption/production or economic resources we have lost already)

    The concept of “traditional oriental values” seems a pretty sloppy portmanteau of racism / orientalism – rather than something like “drawing on knowledge and experience that does not center/naturalize whiteness and colonial power”

    if these conceptual blind spots were remedied we would find more women and people of color’s work arising quite naturally (and also have a conceptual framework better suited to solving the problems of capitalism), although the lack of female and people of color thinkers in the existing categories is still pretty noticeable.

    Some places to start (alongside Ostrom and Roy, as above):
    Kimberle Crenshaw (coined the term “Intersectionality” among many other contributions to political thought )
    Silvia Federici (important and influential on subjects like housework and gendered labor especially)
    Amartya Sen (challenging philosophical and economic definitions of value, productivity)
    Hortense Spillers (important on representations of race and gender, media economies and the psychological underpinnings of racial categories)
    Jared Sexton (if you want to understand how race figures in economic and political decision-making, him, Spillers, Saidiya Hartman and Frank Wilderson are indispensable)
    Audre Lorde
    Starhawk (in re: the environment especially)

  10. AvatarCarol Sanford

    I have certainly done more than most to change the face of work and enterprises. With two best selling, award winning books of case stories of my work, The Responsible Business and The Responsible Entrepreneur. From Fortune 500 CEOs I helped found the UN Global compact to this who helped South Africa exceed the implementation rate for the Constitute for the NEW South Africa in economic terms. I should be on your list. I have coached five leaders who became Fortune 500 CEO or senior executives taking the mantra of responsibility with them. I had the University of WA, The Responsible Program for Executive Education.

    why else would help?

  11. AvatarSimon Tremblay

    Nothing about a Resource Based Economy? No Federico Pistono? No Jacque Fresco? No Peter Joseph? Is that willfull ignorance of more than 23 millions views on youtube for 1 english post of a single video out of the myriads of videos and translations availlable on this subject? ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Z9WVZddH9w ) Or merely ignorance period? Everything you listed is still currency and trade based economy. Nothing from outside the current ideological politically correct box. Its the same old song all over again. Wow…

  12. AvatarIuval

    Can you give any reason why you think this paradigm can compete on the global market with institutions and companies that have the current paradigm? I am pessimistic about that for two reasons:
    1. Historically, most of this is not new. The 100 or so Communautes de Travail (Communities of Work) that sprung up in France after WWII had mostly this paradigm (maybe not ecological part), but without exception they all failed, most within two decades. Why? At least for the largest, Boimondeau, it seems because they could not compete in the global market, which has cost efficiency at the top of its values hierarchy. Companies that care more about work conditions, sharing power, etc, can’t compete. I am still trying to find out what happened to the rest of the CdTs
    2. Theoretically, unless cultures are somehow fundamentally different from species, a change in paradign either requires the death of the old paradigm, or conditions of much information isolation from the old paradigm, neither conditions which hold presently. In evolutionary biology the necessary conditions for speciation are called reproductive isolation.

  13. AvatarTimothy

    As well as being a purely theoretical movement and set of positions, this form of politics requires an *agent* or group of agents.

    Such a set of groups can be found in those that meet at the annual World Social Forum – “Another world is Possible.”

    Rather than the proletariat understood as the “universal class” that is found in traditional Marxism, these groups are a “multiple Left” as described by Immanuel Wallerstein.


  14. AvatarIuval

    Michel, tell you about which “them”? the CdTs? I actually need to do more research on the other ones besides Boimondau (sorry I mispelled earlier). You may be able to help? There is a report about Boimondau by
    Louis A. de Bettignies (France) and Geert Hofstede (Netherlands) from 1973. I would love to find more data on the other CdTs.

    Another research topic is the supposed joining of forces of the Teamsters union in the US and Mondragon a few years ago, that never happened.

  15. AvatarMichel Bauwens

    Thanks for all the suggestions above, which we will transfer to the original authors of the graph. To Iuval: it’s actually the first time I heard about CdT’s, so any links would be appreciated.

  16. AvatarAna Cortes

    It’s very easy to see why there are no women on the list when the work of Heather Marsh, Birgitta Jónsdóttir and Chelsea Manning are all attributed to Julian Assange.

  17. AvatarJon Freeman

    I am all in favour of having as many female contributors as possible. Why would we do anything else? Inclusivity needs to fundamental. But I suggest that we should be including whatever and whoever justifies itself on the basis of the quality of its ideas / concepts / impulses. We can and should all give our best intentions to balancing masculine and feminine polarities and ways of being. I am uncomfortable with the idea that we start the venture from a place of separation and would rather that we be the integration that we are seeking to bring about.

    There are historical tensions that we need to reconcile and overcome. There are old structures which are central to the current way of working and that millions of lives depend on. They need to be included while they evolve. If we build the new on a basis of polarisation against anything old, we will simply generate a new set of problems. It is essential to rise above those old ways.

  18. AvatarMaria Lusitano

    Plus if its p2p it should be filled with names, organized in a network,not just some top thinkers… there is no such thing anymore as a “small group of thoughtful, committed citizens, that can change the world”
    as Margaret Mead used to say. That small group is now very big

  19. AvatarTimothy Wong

    I second Simon Tremblay’s post above that mention should be made of Resource Based Economy. The Venus Project etc. “Patreon”.

    Also co-operative ownership. 2012 was the United Nations Year of the Cooperatives. This has much potential to take beyond Capitalism and develop into post-Capitalist directions.


    (I have never been able to find an answer to this question, but 2012 the UN Year of the Cooperatives in response to many political uprisings and protest movements which took place in 2011?)

    A set of thinkers and activists with the same aims as you guys are those associated with The Next System Project.


  20. AvatarTimothy Wong

    Further to my previous post regarding political agency and The World Social Forum, the above diagram – or at least the Post-Capitalist programme in general – requires a form of *praxis*.

    This may not be possible to represent neatly in a diagram such as the above.

    The praxis given in the above diagram is the rather inchoate notion of “direct democracy” associated with Lawrence Lessig and David Graeber. However, this is inchoate as it still requires a programmatic praxis as to how a fully formed political “demos” can be formed in the first place.

    Again, I would refer to Immanuel Wallerstein’s post-Marxist description of the “Multiple Left”. Similar is “the multitude” as described by Hardt and Negri.Wallerstein’s work on the limitations and the failures of the “anti-systemic” movements which have historically existed thus far are also valuable.

  21. AvatarDyla Lawrence

    I don’t know if Juliane Assange is the best example of open source, wouldn’t Linus Torvalds or Richard Stallman be better examples?

  22. AvatarIuval Clejan

    Here is a link to the Boimondau report (I get it through my local public library, not sure it will work):

    The source is:International Studies of Management & Organization. Spring77, Vol. 7 Issue 1, p91-116. 26p.

    It is pretty weird that this is the only thing I could find about the 100 or so communities after their dissolution, in this so-called information age. There were a few things written in the 50s about Boimondau (while it was thriving) that were really positive, but nothing about this total failure and its possible reasons except this one publication. If anyone else can find more information, it would be a great service. We need to be smarter than we have been in the past, not repeating the same mistakes. Specifically
    1.thinking that we have found something new, getting excited about it and not bothering to check that many already tried it and failed.
    2. thinking that the current system will just roll over and allow us to establish a new paradigm. Complex systems try to maintain themselves. The same kind of hype used now for the digital age and how networking will save the world was used about how the industrial revolution was going to save humanity and introduce a new paradigm.

  23. AvatarBennie Janssens

    Mapping the emerging post-capitalist paradigm, and its main thinkers is a very good idea, but I’m still missing a view about the money system. It’s very important to understand the problems of the current system and how it can be changed to a system that supports sustainability and human rights. Bernard Lietear e.a. wrote a book on it: “money and sustainability”

  24. AvatarBlaqSwans

    Many thanks to everyone to their suggestions.

    Just to re-clarify the context and purpose of this graph: this is the beginning of a work as we initiated a conversation with Michel and Stacco, and which we had mainly focused on the categories to map the post-capitalist paradigm: it’s a beginning so yes, it is imperfect and we’re already thinking of improvements based on your help here and on Facebook. This honeycomb will look much different and much richer in its following iterations.

    We started to list names of the prominent “thinkers and influencers” to illustrate (illustrate = ie not be exhaustive, it would be impossible) how fairly well known figures in the mainstream have actually prefaced what this new paradigm will look like when we connect their work. However, touché: absolutely no question that there must be women and men. There was never any ignorance or malice (as read on FB) in leaving female thinkers and activists aside. HOWEVER thanks to the wisdom of the peers for keeping us honest, and reminding us that a 1st sketch is no excuse. The next iteration that P2P will publish has prominent figures like Vandana Shiva (who is on the 1st graph), Simone de Beauvoir, Silvia Federici, Donella Meadows, Elinor Ostrom, Elisabeth Dmitrieff, and Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw.

    Also to clarify some of the choices, we really want to stick to the original intent to list key precursor thinkers and influencers (classic or contemporary): ie not necessarily pure academics (for instance Assange isn’t) but people who have helped shift the paradigm through their original actions, analysis or research – as opposed to facilitators who are contributing greatly to the ecosystem, but (we feel) are not yet in the same category. Maybe some names are too ‘mainstream’ (eg why Assange and not Heather Marsh or Birgitta Jónsdóttir ?), maybe some more ‘lesser known’ names should be included (eg Bookchin and Ocalan). This is precisely why we wanted to start this conversation and initiate this map!

    Hope it all makes sense! Many thanks again. Affaire à suivre!..

  25. AvatarBob Haugen

    @BlaqSwans – you will never please everybody with something like this, and I don’t need to be pleased, but do you have some squeamishness about including good old uncle Karl?

  26. AvatarTimothy Wong

    @Bob Haugen,

    Yes, I noticed the same thing. The signifier “Karl Marx” is too laden and over-determined even for a list like this, it would seem.

    My own suggestion for the – very generally speaking – “neo-Marxist” Immanuel Wallerstein was similarly overlooked.

    To quote one of my Facebook friend’s reaction.

    My first thought on this paradigm (…) is that there is no place for positive political ideology or action, which I think may start from the “conscience” part of the paradigm.

    I work in or am effected by the worlds diagrammed, which means (I suppose) that they constitute the world about which I have no choice but to accept or resist.

    But I (and others, and everybody else) do have a choice regarding how we construct or respond to our conscience, which I can only see as a struggle we all must make as individual thinkers and actors.

    Would not this be the realm in which we make our arguments, attempt to convince our friends (and importantly those who WOULD be our friends) and defeat (or better yet, convince) our enemies?

    So, I guess, to sum up my comments: the diagram suffers from over-determination, and leaves no place for action.”

    We need praxis and a groups of political agents.

    The praxis given in the above diagram is the rather inchoate notion of “direct democracy” associated with Lawrence Lessig and David Graeber. However, this is inchoate as it still requires a programmatic praxis as to how a fully formed political “demos” can be formed in the first place.

    Again, I would refer to Immanuel Wallerstein’s post-Marxist description of the “Multiple Left”. Similar is “the multitude” as described by Hardt and Negri.Wallerstein’s work on the limitations and the failures of the “anti-systemic” movements which have historically existed thus far are also valuable.

    I think that the groups and movements associated with the World Social Forum are promising. The WSF is in large measure anti-colonial, anti-imperialist. Which is a major omission from the above diagram.

    Rather then the proletariat as the “universal class” of traditional Marxism, the groups and movements of the World Social Forum are the “multiple Left” as described by Immanuel Wallerstein. Or “the multitude” as described by Hardt and Negri.

  27. AvatarSteve Bean

    I suppose that ending the global (dominant) cultural belief in the concept of exchange would require a separate graphic.

    Commenter Simon Tremblay asked about RBE proponents (Fresco, Joseph, Pistono), but The Money Choice (Facebook page) proposes a direct path to ending money use (and subsequent impacts on all areas represented in your diagrams), whereas most RBE proponents see it as a later possibility.

  28. AvatarNatasha

    I agree with many comments here i.e. lack of women, many prominent thinkers left off etc. I don’t like to think in terms of ‘persons of colour’ as someone mentioned it (although technically I can be considered one) however, if we are taking into account various perspectives, Latin American academics, intellectuals and practitioners are completely left off all together. What about Buen Vivir for example, which is one of the most promising alternatives to capitalist development, and the social economy that accompanies it, what about Alberto Acosta, Arturo Escobar, Antonio Gudynas, Tortosa, Quijano, Prada…? So many more that have a lot of valuable insights to offer to the discussion for a pathway forward

  29. AvatarErik

    Can this infographic become a “mind map” like crowdsourced tool for the community to contribute in the curatorship of movements and thinkers?

    I’d love to share some of Brazil’s p2p cases there.


  30. AvatarGrayson Cowing

    Where’s Gayatri Spivak? Why is there a bigot like Gandhi on this list? Are you serious? Why is it almost exclusively men?! This is wildly inappropriate and it makes the academic community look like a bunch of patriarchal fascists.

  31. AvatarToni

    I apologise for not contributing the enlarge the feminine side but as first thought, definitively Noam Chomsky and Zygmunt Bauman should be there.

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