In this week’s roundup: a new board game for activists and organizers, Japan’s debt absolution, and a tech-startup fighting back Amazon’s stronghold.
Sol Collective: One of NEC’s newest members, Sol Collective, started 12 years ago by former teachers on a mission to provide artistic and educational programming, promote social justice, and empower youth through art. What began as a small project has turned into a local institution — one that not only has provided numerous opportunities to local artists and activists, but has helped develop the local economy. Read about how they’re building up their local community here.
Why you should care about Amazon: In their latest podcast, the Institute of Local Self-Reliance lays out the benefits of buying local– from diversity to community health– and how the tech startup Placemaker knits the independent businesses of these communities together in order for them to better retain and gain customers in the face of big-box retail and online platforms such as Amazon.
Save the Seeds: Six seed companies now control three quarters of the seed market, but in the face of climate change, a Montana seed library seeks to preserve our food heritage. Read about how they’re doing it here.
Solidarity Economies Abroad
Debts Be-gone: Japan has been canceling its debt at the rate of about $720 billion per year— by selling its debts to the Central Bank. Can this method work for the U.S. too? Read more about it here.
Digital Democracy: Barcelona is building a networked city from the ground up in the hopes of bolstering democracy and voting. Read how they’re doing it– and how they’re navigating questions like ‘Who should own and control city data?’ here.
International Cooperatives Day: “Let us draw on the strengths of cooperatives as we pool efforts to implement the 2030 Agenda and make sure that no one is left behind,” said the head of the United Nations labor agency in an address on International Cooperatives Day. Read why he believes coops can play a role in meeting the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development here.
Resource: The Game of People and Power
NEC Member TESA (Toolbox for Education and Social Action) has just launched Rise Up: The Game of People and Power, a cooperative board game about organizing social movements. In the game, players shape the story of their movement together and take creative actions to fight for victory, from waging civil disobedience to writing protest songs. Meanwhile, the System fights back with tactics of its own, like surveillance, arrests, and infighting. Learn more!
- Jackson, Miss. Mayor-elect Chokwe Lumumba: I Plan to Build the "Most Radical City on the Planet"
- Will Impact Investors Embrace Employee-Owned Companies?
- The New Working Class
- Could You Help Rewire Income Disparity?
- The Future of Farmland: The New Land Grab
- A Plant-Based Dominican Food Co-Op Opens In Washington Heights
- Bringing Power to the People: The Unlikely Case for Utility Populism
- The New Story of Economy
- Pol says city should help employees buy out their retiring bosses
Development Director, Fellowship for Intentional Community
Community Land Trust and Housing Organizer, Picture the Homeless
Ujima Fund Manager, Boston Ujima Project
Program Director, Allied Media Projects
Worker Cooperatives in NYC and How You Can Start One Too!
Learn the basics of starting a worker cooperative in this fun information session hosted by the NYC Network of Worker Cooperatives (NYCNOWC) and the Community and Worker Ownership Project (CWOP) at the The Murphy Institute for Labor Studies at CUNY. (NYC, July 11)
Center for Popular Economics Summer Institute 2017
We’re living in a global moment of reactionary backlash: fear mongering about immigration, refugee crises, climate change denial, rising nationalism and conservative protectionism. These processes occur against the backdrop of increasing inequality, division, and conflict across the globe. At Summer Institute 2017, we’ll explore the economic structures which have shaped this moment, and how we can build alternative forms of global economic integration and solidarity. (Amherst, MA, July 30, 2017)
Immigrant-led worker cooperatives have been a successful tactic for migrant communities to build power, build wealth, and develop member-leaders. However, the recent political situation is a reminder that migrant workers and other communities remain vulnerable to injustice and disempowerment. This is a call to action to extend protection and safety to all communities facing harassment and persecution in the workplace, including all people of color, immigrants, Muslims, and people with disabilities. (Online, July 26)
If you want to strengthen democracy where it matters most … in our communities, our schools, our workplaces and local economies, our military, our government, our media, our constitution, join us at the third national Democracy Convention. (Minneapolis, Minnesota, August 2-6)