New Economy Roundup: What Has Amazon Done? Who Tells Our News? What Are Banks For?
This week we’re talking about Amazon’s ambitions to overtake… everything, how the cooperative model allows for true news telling, and how public banks are gaining momentum in the U.S. and beyond.
Stories From the Field
Amazon: Why Is This Happening? Chris Hayes of NBC speaks with Stacy Mitchell, co-director of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, about the bargain we’ve made in exchange for convenience. What have we given up? How can we change? Listen to the Podcast here.
Two words that send shivers down the spine of Wall Street – “Public Banking": With newly elected House members such as Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, Ayanna Pressley and Rashida Tlaib on the House Financial Services Committee, Public Banks move closer to mainstream as part of the revitalizing of Main Street and resetting the financial sector to work for the public not just the economic elite. NEC member organization the Public Banking Institute has more.
Cohousing Communities: In the 4th and latest episode of the Planet Community series created by NEC member organization Fellowship for Intentional Community, we travel to Ann Arbor, MI where three adjacent cohousing communities have formed over the last 20 years, home to over 300 people. Watch the New Co-housing Episode.
Solidarity Economies Abroad
Regional Cooperative Banks in the UK: More than ten years from the financial crash of 2008, revolutionary new community cooperative banks are set to shake up the banking sector and play a pivotal role in the flourishing of community wealth building across the UK. NEC Member, the Democracy Collaborative, has more.
Coops Around The World: AroundtheWorld.Coop is telling the story of cooperatives across the globe, like Coopérative toudarte in Morocco, where about 100 Berber women are producing organic Argan oil in the Agadir region since 2004. They’ve just released a teaser, but you should follow AroundTheWorld.Coop for more videos to come.
Digital Mapping for Participatory Budgeting in Kenya: Public Participation requires that citizens have accurate and up to date information. In Kenya, experiments with GIS maps show promise of enhancing development planning, and equitable sharing of resources. Read about tech and democratic development here.
Can Cooperatives Save News?
Over the weekend, Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez tweeted, “Gonna keep it 100: The biggest threats to journalism right now are tech monopolies & concentration of ownership. Healthy democracy *requires* high-quality journalism. Without a wide range of independent outlets & the revenue to sustain them, our democracy will continue to crumble.”
Facts. The international organization for industrial and service cooperatives, CICOPA, recently asked in their global newsletter, “Work Together,” how cooperatives could help reimagine, build and create more ownership in the news. They spoke to journalists, photographers and editors to hear testimonials and examples from across the world. Can the cooperative model save the news?
New Economy Project Podcast
When the last remaining bank branch on the Lower East Side closed its doors in 1986, local activists took matters into their own hands and organized to establish a non-profit financial cooperative, the Lower East Side People’s Federal Credit Union. This episode from features a conversation between New Economy Project co-director Sarah Ludwig and Linda Levy, the credit union’s longtime CEO. They discuss how the credit union got started, and Linda shares her experience organizing for financial justice and the cooperative economy in New York City. Listen their conversation here.
NEC on The Gram
Follow NEC on Instagram – @NewEconomyCoalition – where we’re tracking where NEC staff is at, including our Interim Co-Director, Shavaun Evans at this past weekend’s Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group’s conference in Little Rock, Arkansas (where she bumped into NEC board member and Fund for Democratic Communities’ Ed Whitfield). Follow #SSAWG2019 to see what went down!
Education Director, Cooperative Food Empowerment Directive (CoFED)
Communications Director, New Florida Majority
Environmental Justice Network Coordinator, Power Shift Network
Program Assistant, Coro New York Leadership Center
Half-Time Project Steward, LA Coop Lab
Loan Administrator, Shared Capital Cooperative
Program Director, San Francisco Rising
Cultural Organizer, Highlander Center
Member Services Manager, Riverton Community Housing
Co-Coordinator, Liberation School South
Assistant Editor, Economics Hub, openDemocracy
Policy Director, Gund Institute for Environment at the University of Vermont
Program Administrator, People’s Hub
Director of Grassroots Partnerships, Thousand Currents
African Diaspora Partnerships Manager, Thousand Currents
Communications & Cooperative Developer, Center for Family Life
Development Director, Rethink
Transit Equity Day
Holding actions in dozens of cities across the U.S., Transit Equity Day is a collaborative effort of several organizations and unions to promote public transit as a civil right and a strategy to combat climate change. Join NEC members Labor Network for Sustainability, Institute for Policy Studies, Jobs with Justice, and 350.org in demanding that our local, state and federal governments make public transit accessible and affordable to all, create good jobs by expanding our public transit systems, and protect our health and climate by using renewable energy to power our buses and trains. Check out the Action Toolkit. (February 4 – Global)
California Mobilizes for Public Banking at the Assembly Joint Hearing
On Monday, February 4th, the Assembly Banking and Finance and Assembly Local Government Committee will hold a joint hearing at the State Capitol to examine public banking at the local level! 3 panels will include speakers representing: state agencies, Sushil Jacob speaking on behalf of California Public Banking Alliance, and community and Wall Street bankers. Pack the meeting with public banking allies and show our legislators in the State Assembly and Senate that the time for public banking is NOW! (February 4 – Sacramento, CA)
Lawyering in the Solidarity Economy: Supporting Economic Democracy in Black Communities
(February 11 – Webinar)
SELC Compost Law & Policy Teach-in and Discussion
This conversation is hosted by local compost entrepreneur, Kourtnii Brown of Common Compost, and compost law advocate, Janelle Orsi, of NEC Member Sustainable Economies Law Center. Now is the time to learn about and shape the future of compost law in California! In fact, multiple state and local agencies are seeking input on draft compost regulations right now! Whether you grow food, eat food, or make compost, join for a teach-in and discussion on this fascinating subject, which has deep implications for the future of health, nutrition, food systems, climate, jobs, and more. (February 11 – Oakland, CA)
Understanding the Global Rise of the Far Right
This interactive workshop will support your understanding of historic processes, as well and provide insights into our current global realities. Through a comparative analysis, we will examine how the far right in power has sought to challenge democratic institutions. We will explore the use of technology in right populism and the role of racism, gender violence, and xenophobia in constructing far right ideology. (February 26 – Webinar)
Another World Is Here: Worker Co-ops and the Solidarity Economy in MA
This two day statewide convening will focus on the advancement of a worker ownership movement as well as the broader solidarity economy in Massachusetts. (March 16-17, Worcester, MA)
Greenlining Institute 2019 Economic Summit
Each year Greenlining brings together powerful voices for change—grassroots community leaders, nationally known advocates, artists, elected officials and more—for a unique event that focuses like a laser on how to build a more equitable, just society. This is more than a conference; it’s a one-of-a-kind event where innovation, art and activism meet. (April 26 – Oakland, CA)
NESI 2019 Global Forum
NESI 2019 will bring the global movement for economic system change together in Malaga to co-create the wellbeing economy that we all need. Participants will explore how to achieve our common global objectives (Sustainable Development Goals and climate change goals) from a local perspective and through social innovation. The food we eat, how we get around, how money circulates, the way we work – all of these and more are part of the economic system. We all have a role to play in transforming the economy so that it delivers shared well-being on a healthy planet. (April 24-29 – Malaga, Spain)