Collaborative Consumption: TED Talks

(notes on videos after each embed) Lisa Gansky: The Mesh In many circumstances, “access trumps ownership” — libraries, public transit, coffeehouses — and the Mesh refers to “meshy” businesses that provide “better things easily shared.” Vectors leading to this new emphasis on sharing: The Recession: we’re recalculating value based on what we’d now consider to be … Continue reading

Off the Pedestal

notes on Speth, James Gustave. “Off the Pedestal: Creating a New Image of Economic Growth.”  Yale Environment 360. 31 May 2011. Economic growth is our favorite thing here in America. The “growth imperative” dominates US political and economic life. There are limits of growth, however. Herman Daly: “if neoclassical economists were true to their trade, they’d recognize … Continue reading

The End of Growth

notes on Daly, Herman. “The End of Growth.” The European Magazine. 05 September 2011. Daly went to the World Bank to work with economists who primarily disagreed with him — “it is of no use preaching to the choir.” At the World Bank, everyone had come from the same elite schools, the same teachers, believing the … Continue reading

Reclaiming the Commons

notes on Bollier, David. “Reclaiming the Commons,” an essay based on material included in Bollier, David. Silent Theft: The Private Plunder of our Common Wealth (New York: Routledge, 2002). Who shall control the commons? There is a kind of enclosure process happening to the American commons as it’s being converted into market resources — private appropriation of collectively owned … Continue reading

America Beyond Capitalism: Emerging Context and Key Issues

notes on Alperovitz, Gar. 2006. “America Beyond Capitalism: Emerging Context and Key Issues.” The Good Society 15. (3): 51-56. Our current crisis is more than political — it’s systemic. Truly fundamental values — equality, liberty, meaningful democracy, ecological sustainability — are all increasingly being thwarted by real world practices. The American labor movement is in a state … Continue reading

Herman Daly

And if economics is a religion, Herman Daly is its arch-heretic, a member of the high priesthood turned renegade. From 1988 to 1994, Daly was the World Bank’s senior environmental economist, a lonely voice of dissent in an organization that frowns on unbelievers. During his six-year tenure, Daly, the economist-turned-ecovisionary whose works established ecological economics … Continue reading

Elinor Ostrom

Elinor Ostrom was the recipient of the Nobel Prize in Economics in 2009 — the first woman to achieve the distinction — for her analysis of economic governance, especially the governance of common property like air, water and public spaces. Virtually all the world’s most urgent problems require collective action. Be it environmental protection, the … Continue reading

New-Economy Movement

The idea that we need a “new economy”—that the entire economic system must be radically restructured if critical social and environmental goals are to be met—runs directly counter to the American creed that capitalism as we know it is the best, and only possible, option. Especially after the recent financial crisis, many new-economy organizations have … Continue reading

Triple Bottom Line

The idea of the “triple bottom line” (TBL or 3BL) goes back to 1994, when the phrase was coined by John Elkington. He argued that companies should we working toward three equally important bottom lines: profit, people, and planet (3P). This is a major component of the stakeholder value movement of the 21st century. TBL has become … Continue reading

Capitalism 3.0

notes on Barnes, Peter. Capitalism 3.0. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2006. Systemic problem of capitalist democracy: government puts the interests of private corporations before those of its citizens. Neither market nor state alone can be the full answer to the problems — both are flawed. Tragedy of the commons: people will always over-use a commons because … Continue reading

Environmental Responsibility

In February of 2011, Crane began construction on a new Dalton facility that uses a process called pyrolysis to turn waste into energy. Pyrolysis is a thermochemical decomposition of organic material at elevated temperatures without the participation of oxygen. It involves the simultaneous change of chemical composition and physical phase, and is irreversible. Pyrolysis is … Continue reading