On the Transition to a Commons-Based Economy

An interview with Commons Transition first published at CommonsTransition.org and republished under a Peer Production, P2P Attribution-ConditionalNonCommercial-ShareAlikeLicense.

Can you define Commons Transition, tell us what it means to you?

Chris: To me, a commons transition speaks to the process of communities progressively controlling and self-governing more and more of their collective resources, by and for themselves and future generations. The “transition” implies that we are moving from one system of organizing society – in this case, global capitalism – to a wholly distinct socio-ecological paradigm rooted in age-old practices referred to as “the commons.” What’s particularly interesting about this transition is that, in many ways, it’s a return to principles of managing our homes that evolved over millennia before the onslaught of industrial capitalism. Our contemporary context is obviously much different from the indigenous and peasant cultures that sustained commons-based societies for thousands of years, but we have much to learn from them in how to undertake this transition.

I think this Commons Transition involves both a confrontation with the forces of neoliberalism – the ideology of privatization and commodification of common resources – and a flourishing of economic and political practices deeply rooted in the diverse cultures and ecologies of communities around the world. It’s ultimately about a movement toward the collective management of our common wealth, and ensuring that everyone shares access to and decision-making about the resources they depend on to thrive.

Can you share with us some examples of Commons transitions? Continue reading

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“Interview with Chris Tittle, Director of Organizational Resilience at The Sustainable Economies Law Center” (SELC) by Willi Paul, PlanetShifter.com Magazine

“Meet Us at the Legal Café!”

An interview with Willi Paul of PlanetShifter.com Magazine

What is community, Chris?

I like to think of community as both place and process. There are communities of place – geographically bounded communities where people share a common connection to a particular area and the experience of living there; there are also communities of passion based on a shared identity or set of values that extend across physical borders but are nevertheless bounded by something shared.

It’s important that we nurture both types of communities and that we are very clear about how we use terms like “community” in this type of work. Part of creating community resilience is extending decision-making and autonomy so people can define their own communities by what they have, rather than what they lack. And as a dynamic process, “community” is always being created or unraveled or adapting to change. Creating tools to strengthen community as both process and place is essential for resiliency.

Read more at PlanetShifter Magazine

Learning the Law in a Changing World

Learning the Law in a Changing World

A blog post originally published on LikeLincoln.org and Shareable.net

At the Sustainable Economies Law Center (SELC), we are dedicated to creating more just and resilient local economies by meeting the legal needs of cooperatives, urban farms, community enterprises, local currencies, and other creative economic structures. And, as members of the legal community, we are increasingly exploring what a more just and resilient practice of law might look like.

Read more about the growing movement to transform legal education and the practice of law through experiential community-based learning: http://www.shareable.net/blog/learning-the-law-in-a-changing-world