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Commonsabundance.net	
  
The	
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Federating efforts towards a thrivable world
Federating efforts towards a thrivable world
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Federating efforts towards a thrivable world

The Commons as underlying logic to federate social disparate social change and sustainability efforts. A talk at the 'Imagine the Common Good' conference, Paris, August 25 to 28, 2013. Part of the Cultural Diversity & the Common Good panel.

Version française: http://www.slideshare.net/helenefinidori/fdrer-les-efforts-pour-un-monde-meilleur

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Federating efforts towards a thrivable world

  1. 1. A  systems  thinking  experiment  
  2. 2. A  systems  thinking  experiment   LinkedIn  Systems  Thinking  World  conversa;on:     Time  for  revolu;onary  thinking  and  ac;on.  How   to  make  it  happen?     §  8000  comments   §  2  years   §  100s  of  commenters   §  Unanimous  recogni;on  of  a  threat   §  No  unifying  synthesis   §  Plurality  of  approaches,  levels  of  interven;on,   solu;ons  
  3. 3. Accumula;ve  systemic  threat  
  4. 4. Accumula;ve  systemic  threat   We  could  agree  on     §  ‘accumula;on’  of  systemic  threat   §  rapid  globaliza;on  of  new  forms  of   monoculture     §  technologies  and  models  that  foster   massifica;on  of  behavior   §  amplifica;on  of  effects  making  us   increasingly  vulnerable   §  need  for  urgent  ‘coordinated’  ac;on      
  5. 5. No  unifying  synthesis  in  response  
  6. 6. No  unifying  synthesis  in  response   Facing  accumula;ve  threat,  as  a  whole  we   §  Couldn’t  agree  on  problems   §  Couldn’t  agree  on  causes   §  Couldn’t  agree  on  priori;es   §  Couldn’t  agree  on  values   §  Couldn’t  agree  on  roles  &  responsibili;es   §  Couldn’t  agree  on  courses  of  ac;on   §  Couldn’t  ‘construct’  ‘common’  responses     >>  But  is  this  really  what  is  needed?    
  7. 7. An  ecology  for  transforma;ve  ac;on   SPIR ITUA L
  8. 8. An  ecology  for  transforma;ve  ac;on   We  could  [somewhat]  agree  on  the  NATURE  of   the  solu;on  space     §  Diversity  of  efforts  that  ‘need’  each  other   §  Each  individual/  group  from  his  own  place,   perspec;ve  and  ac;on  logic   §  With  various  mo;va;ons  &  needs   §  Clustered  around  shared  inten;ons  /  objects   of  a]en;on  that  are  not  interchangeable   §  Following  mul;ple  pathways  with  no  central   perspec;ve    
  9. 9. Diversity  people  >  pathways  >  efforts   •  •  •  •  •  •  •  •  •  •  •  •  Back  to  basics,  rela;onships,  community,  gi^,  love…   Local  empowerment,  autonomy,  resilience…     Educa;on,  communica;on,  sharing  of  prac;ce   Ethics,  morality,  behaviors   Rules,  regula;ons  against  excess  &  abuses   Power  &  resource  distribu;on,  technology   Structure  &  framework  to  organize  discourse  &  ac;on   Big  picture  thinking,  systems,  interconnec;ons   Macro  and  micro  economic  models,  money  &  finance   Goals,  indicators  &  metrics   Mindfulness,  spirituality   ….  
  10. 10. How  to  coalesce  efforts?  
  11. 11. How  to  coalesce  efforts?   §  How  can  distributed  and  self-­‐organized  efforts   ‘add  up’  &  accumulate  cohesively?   §  How  can  we  evaluate  where  the  whole  is  going   in  its  diversified  intricacy  to  make  the  right   choices  and  take  correc;ve  ac;ons  at  each   locality   §  Without  being  diluted  in  pluralism,  decimated   as  a  whole  or  falling  off  the  cliff?        
  12. 12. A  scaffold  to  aggregate  coherence  
  13. 13. A  scaffold  to  aggregate  coherence     Ø  We  need  a  meta-­‐narra;ve  as  scaffold  to   aggregate  different  kinds  of  powers  and   mechanisms  to  support  the  emergence  of  the   new.       Ø  Something  strategically  ambiguous  to  draw   coherence  from  a  variety  of  disparate  micro   narra;ves.   Ann  Pendleton  Jullian   Architect,  professor  of  design     explores  the  interchange  between  culture,  environment  and  technology.      
  14. 14. Underlying  not  overarching  principles  
  15. 15. Underlying  not  overarching  principles     Ø  We  need  a  unifying  principle  that  increases   the  diversity  of  the  system.  One  that  does  not   transcend  and  resolve  differences,  but  that   preserves  and  adds  to  them.   Ø  Such  unifying  principle  would  be  founda;onal   to  genera;ve  processes,  as  an  undertow  for   transforma;ve  ac;on.   Bonni>a  Roy   Process  philosopher,  explores  post-­‐convenAonal  thinking  across   mulAple  domains  (psychology,  biology,  evoluAonary  systems,  process   dialecAcs,  etc…)    
  16. 16. The  Commons  as  genera;ve  system     Modular  Branching  Genera;ve  System  –  Anthony  Ma]ox  -­‐  h]p://archive.anthonyma]ox.com/2007-­‐2011-­‐blog/index.html%3Fp=2926.html    
  17. 17. The  Commons  as  genera;ve  system   The  commons  in  their  extended  defini;on  are:     §  resources  &  factors  of  enablement                >  the  common  goods  –  what  to  care  for   §  prac;ces  &  tools  people  use  to  relate  to  each   other,  to  their  resources,  to  earth                >  the  commons  ethos  –  how  we  care  for  them   §  outcomes  that  result  from  these  prac;ces                >  the  common  good  –  in  turn  objects  of  care     All  to  be  protected,  nurtured,  grown…  in  awareness  of   each  other  and  of  their  interdependence      
  18. 18. The  Commons  as  genera;ve  system     Ø  a  system  genera;ve  of  livelihood  with  people   at  its  core  that  takes  mul;ple  forms   Ø  a  tangible  ‘social  object’  versa;le  enough  to   aggregate  disparate  efforts,  and  to  play  as   underlying  logic  to  guide  choice  at  various   levels  and  scales    
  19. 19. The  ubiquitous  commons  logic   There  is  a  commons  logic   in  mul;ple  ac;on  logics…   Inspired  from  Barre]  Brown’s  work  on  communica;ng  with  many  world  views  
  20. 20. Going  back  to  the  source  &  essen;als   honoring  ancestral  tradi;ons  &  mother  earth   >>  The  mythical,  sacred,  spiritual   dimensions  of  the  commons  and   commoning.  Commons  as   harmony,  a]unement,  giving,   communing  with  each  other  and   nature.    
  21. 21. Self-­‐protec;ng  livelihoods     figh;ng  the  system  as  survivors  or  heroes   How the Red Opportunist relates to sustainability • • What is important regarding sustainability: Being seen as a hero; assertion of self over the system or Nature; obtain power and be free;;  respect;;  the  “Law  of  the  Jungle”;;   impulsivity and immediate reward; toughness; “hands  on/  street/survival”  skills. Examples may include: “Save  the  Planet”  hero   initiatives; Earth First!; ecoterrorism; frontier mentalities; off-the-grid housing, Social Darwinism; Monkey wrenching. >>    The  empowering,  enabling  dimension  and  distributed  nature  of  the  commons.   P2P  produc;on  &  crea;on  of  commons,  commons  ac;vism,  crea;ve  commons,   open  access,  local  commons,  genera;ve  of  autonomy  and  resilience.   Esbjörn-Hargens, S., & Zimmerman, M. E. (2009) Integral Ecology. Adapted from: Beck, D and Cowan, C; (1996) Spiral Dynamics
  22. 22. Crea;ng  Legi;macy  &  stewardship     through  governance  &  ins;tu;ons   >>    The  stewardship  and  governance  dimension  of  the  commons;  legi;macy  and   protec;on  of  the  commons  through  ins;tu;ons,  law  &  policy.     Preserva;on,  conserva;on,  human  rights,  right  to  access,  public  domain  &   intellectual  property,  global  commons,  jus;ce  &  equity,  ethics  &  behaviors.    
  23. 23. Seeking  ra;onal  solu;ons  &  efficiencies     via  new  strategies  &  mechanisms   chiever relates to sustainability ng sustainability: ndependence; chieving hings better nce and orces.” atural sm; science of utilitarian tal Psychology; dustrial ns, S., & Zimmerman, M. E. (2009) Integral Ecology. Adapted from: Beck, D and Cowan, C; (1996) Spiral Dynamics >>  The  ‘tools’  and  ‘science’  serving  the  commons…  Management  and  conserva;on/ preserva;on  technologies,  macro  and  micro  economic  models  and  policies,  indicators   and  metrics.  Alterna;ve  &  complementary  currencies  and  finance  instruments…  
  24. 24. Fostering  emo;onal  rela;onships     between  people  &  with  nature     >>    The  commons  as  social  prac;ce  and  outcome.  Community  involvement,  social   responsibility,  learning,  collabora;on.  The  loving,  sharing,  par;cipa;ng,  consensual   dimension  of  the  commons.  Commons  ideals  and  rela;onships,  prac;ces,  wellbeing.    
  25. 25. Understanding  systems  &  complexity   linking  theory  &  prac;ce   >>  The  integra;ve  and  dynamic  aspects  of  the  commons.  Commons  and  associated   prac;ces  as  a  system  and  process.  Interweaving  contexts  and  development,  the   cultural,  natural  and  technological.  Dialogue  based  methodologies,  leadership   development.    
  26. 26. Transforming  self  &  others   integra;ng  the  material,  spiritual,  societal   >>  The  commons  as  enlivenment,  at  the  interplay  of  awareness,  thought,  ac;on,   effect.  Experience  of  wholeness  of  existence  through  mind  and  spirit.    Sense   making  and  deep  awareness  of  systems  interac;ons  and  dynamic  processes.    
  27. 27. The  commons  as  support  narra;ve  
  28. 28. The  commons  as  support  narra;ve   The  commons  take  mul;ple  forms,   speak  mul;ple  languages...       They  can  support  the  implementa;on  of   strategies  and  narra;ves  of  a  variety  of   ac;ons  logics  expressed  on  the  ground…     In  return  they  benefit  as  a  whole  from   each  of  the  individual  ini;a;ves  in  a   feedback  loop.        
  29. 29. What  next?   How  can  each  of  the  strategies,  stories,  ac;ons   towards  a  thriving  world  find  more  strength  in   the  commons  as  common  ground?     How  can  a  story  of  the  commons  and  a  new   paradigm  emerge  from  these  various  stories?       How  can  the  ac;ons  in  each  of  these  areas   contribute  to  strengthen  each  other  and    the   commons  as  a  whole?    
  30. 30. The  Commons  Abundance  Network   Commonsabundance.net  
  31. 31. The  Commons  Abundance  Network  

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