Resilience Through Simplification: Revisiting Tainter’s Theory of Collapse

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, Economics, Peak Oil, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

Below, Samuel Alexander summarises his new Simplicity Institute Report, which discusses ‘voluntary simplification’ in the context of Joseph Tainter’s theory of collapse. The full report, ‘Resilience through Simplification,’ is available here (360kb PDF). A society or other institution can be destroyed by the cost of sustaining itself. — Joseph Tainter Joseph Tainter In 1988 Joseph… Read more »

Village Repair: Permaculture Design Maquettes for Small Towns and Villages

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, Education, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

by Delvin Solkinson Download the free, open source printable files for 3 placemaking worksheets here : Placemaking Worksheets (PDF) The Village Repair branch of Gaiacraft is a local grassroots initiative growing in the mossy cedar rainforests of Mt. Elphinstone, British Columbia, Canada. In the Heart Gardens and surrounding downtown core of our coastal village, a… Read more »

Permaculture: A Call for Diversity

Posted by & filed under Aid Projects, Development & Property Trusts, Education, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

Sri Lankan tea plantation worker Photograph © copyright Craig Mackintosh For the past year, I have been circumnavigating the world as a curious observer, student, and wwoofer. After undergraduate studies, I wanted to balance the Darwinian culture of academia with a paradigm that encouraged humility and knowledge sharing within a global civil society. I took… Read more »

Rio+20: What Ecovillages Offer

Posted by & filed under Alternatives to Political Systems, Community Projects, Conferences, Consumerism, Eco-Villages, Economics, Peak Oil, People Systems, Population, Presentations/Demonstrations, Society, Village Development.

It is the start of Rio+20, the UN Conference on Sustainable Development, and the Global Ecovillage Network has a strong contingent here from all over the world. We have erected a dome at the People’s Summit in Cupala dos Povos (Flamingo Park) and are providing a “Speaker’s Corner” for ecovillages, Transition Towns, Occupy, and others… Read more »

PRI Networking, the Value of Collaboration, and the Development of More PRI Education/Demonstration Projects

Posted by & filed under Aid Projects, Commercial Farm Projects, Community Projects, Consumerism, Demonstration Sites, Education Centres, Networking Sites, People Systems, Society, Urban Projects, Village Development.

Do we segregate…? Photos © Craig Mackintosh Most of us are by now wholly cognizant of the fact that the global response to long-brewing trouble has been well short of timely or appropriate. The world as a whole, if I were to be brutally honest, is taking three steps backwards for every few inches it… Read more »

Letters from New Zealand: Villages for the Future — a Look at Bob Corker and the Kotare Ecovillage

Posted by & filed under Alternatives to Political Systems, Eco-Villages, People Systems, Village Development.

Kotare Village surrounds, west of Wairoa, in the Hawkes Bay region of New Zealand’s North Island All photographs © Craig Mackintosh The industrial revolution, coupled with its move towards privatisation of land and resources and its focus on capitalisation, has had effects which can be somewhat imperceptible when viewed over only a decade or so,… Read more »

Pietro Zucchetti Interviews Rob Hopkins

Posted by & filed under Alternatives to Political Systems, Consumerism, Eco-Villages, Economics, Food Shortages, Global Warming/Climate Change, Peak Oil, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

This is an interview with Rob Hopkins, the founder of the Transition Town movement founded in Totnes, United Kingdom. The interview is about what Transition Towns mean, and how he came up with this idea as a permaculture teacher. The interview also covers how is this concept important now, during the present global crisis, and… Read more »

The Konohana Family Farm – Successful Sustainable Living in Japan

Posted by & filed under Commercial Farm Projects, Community Projects, Demonstration Sites, Eco-Villages, Education Centres, People Systems, Village Development.

This micro-documentary about the Konohana Family Farm will take you to the heart of a successful intentional community flourishing about three hours from Tokyo. Their farm was established on the foothills of Mount Fuji, about 18 years ago, by a handful of people who sought an alternative lifestyle. They knew almost nothing about sustainable living… Read more »

Surveying Commons Activism on the International Stage

Posted by & filed under Alternatives to Political Systems, Bio-regional Organisations, Community Projects, Eco-Villages, Economics, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

The following is an adaptation of my notes for my talk at the Occupy Wall Street “Making Worlds” conference on February 16-18, 2012. I am so pleased that the Occupy and Commons movements are finding each other and starting a new conversation. Occupy is an incredible force for change. It has a bracing vision, a… Read more »

Update on Sociocracy Workshop, Brisbane (March 2012)

Posted by & filed under Alternatives to Political Systems, Courses/Workshops, People Systems, Society, Village Development.

What: Sociocracy Workshop When: March 16-17, with an additional, optional Advanced Training day on March 19 (1.1mb PDF flyer) Where: Synapse Conference Room, Level 1, 262 Montague Rd., West End, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia This is an update on a previous advert for the Sococracy workshop we ran on this site recently. Due to popular demand,… Read more »

A Manifesto for Psychopaths

Posted by & filed under Alternatives to Political Systems, Consumerism, Economics, People Systems, Society.

Ayn Rand’s ideas have become the Marxism of the new right. by George Monbiot: journalist, author, academic and environmental and political activist, United Kingdom. It has a fair claim to be the ugliest philosophy the post-war world has produced. Selfishness, it contends, is good, altruism evil, empathy and compassion are irrational and destructive. The poor… Read more »

Free Your (Eco)Mind

Posted by & filed under Consumerism, People Systems, Society.

Think like an ecosystem, and you just might save the world Gradually it’s dawned on me: We humans are creatures of the mind. We perceive the world according to our core, often unacknowledged, assumptions. They determine, literally, what we can see and what we cannot. Nothing so wrong with that, perhaps — except that, in… Read more »