The Global Transition to a New Economy maps innovative projects that challenge business as usual and contribute to the systemic change to our economy that we urgently require. Together, these projects create a world that prioritizes human wellbeing, within environmental limits.
For over two years, Shareable has explored the new sharing economy in its many forms: how individuals, families, communities, entrepreneurs, businesses, designers, coders, and countless more are building resilience through collaboration and sharing.
The guide, available as a free PDF download, offers four Action Ideas to help communities tap into their shared assets and resources.
Before there was money, there was debt. Every economics textbook says the same thing: Money was invented to replace onerous and complicated barter systems—to relieve ancient people from having to haul their goods to market.
Graeber shows that arguments about debt and debt forgiveness have been at the center of political debates from Italy to China, as well as sparking innumerable insurrections. He also brilliantly demonstrates that the language of the ancient works of law and religion (words like “guilt,” “sin,” and “redemption”) derive in large part from ancient debates about debt, and shape even our most basic ideas of right and wrong. We are still fighting these battles today without knowing it.
The Great Transition report set out why the transition to a new economy is not only necessary, but also possible and desirable. Keeping in mind the big picture, at different times the campaign will focus on particular issues. For example, without a financial system to support the necessary transition, little will happen. So, reforming the banks is an urgent priority.
AlterNet has published an excellent article that seeks to summarize the "new economy movement" - at least from a progressive perspective - including sustainability, community, co-ops, localization, collective ownership, stockholder activism, corporate...
For two centuries political debates have been framed by economic arguments – markets versus states; right versus left. But economic thinking is changing, and it is paramount that policy and politics change along with it.
Charles Eisenstein, author of Sacred Economics, and James Quilligan, who has recently led a highly acclaimed seminar series in London onThe Emergence of Commons-based Economy, are two leading lights of "new economy" thought. They have engaged in a passionate and candid conversation on June 26, 2012, which was captured on video in 6 segments.
So my first point is the importance of recognizing the commons as a distinct sector for creating value. This can be difficult – because we don’t have an agreed-upon language or taxonomy for talking about the value-proposition of the commons. The phenomenon is still too novel.
For many people, it is difficult to accept that value can exist without the sanction of money or private property rights – that value that is intangible and unquantifiable can actually matter.
The new economy is rising all around us. Farmers' markets. Car sharing. B Corporations. Impact investing. Barter networks. The sharing economy. Community supported agriculture. Local currencies. Worker-owned cooperatives. Local investment clubs. Heard of any of these? The reality is that the new economy, boosted by 21st-century communications and other technologies, is everywhere we look. America is awash with new models of wealth creation, new institutions, new ideas, and new cultural patterns—and together, it adds up to something significant. Certainly, there is much work to be done. But it’s clear that our local economies and communities wouldn’t be as strong as they are today without the incredible models of cooperation and resource sharing that are now emerging at all levels, taking people from hopelessness to hope.
"Infinite growth of material consumption in a finite world is an impossibility." –E. F. Schumacher
The last two chapters have outlined an economy that is sustainable: it incorporates the ecological limits of the planet, and it thrives without a structural need for endless growth in consumption. But is sustainability to be our highest aspiration?
I have long been impatient with “sustainability,” as if that were an end in itself. Isn’t it more important to think about what we want to sustain, and therefore what we want to create? Many beautiful, necessary things are not sustainable: pregnancy, for example. I am heartened by the recent shift of thinking away from sustainability and toward transition. What we are transitioning to will be far more sustainable than our current way of life, but that is not the ultimate goal, just as the ultimate goal of life is not merely to stay alive.
“I believe that we are living through a collaborative revolution as significant as the industrial revolution,” said author and collaborative consumption guru Rachel Botsman, at the TEDGlobal conference in Edinburgh last week. “It is taking us back to the old market principles of sharing swapping, bartering.”
So we find ourselves in the midst of economic disruptions that may well foreshadow long-term, whole-system economic breakdowns fed by a full spectrum of emerging dynamics - from resource depletion (especially peak oil and loss of fresh water and topsoil)...
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