This report provides an overview of this programme. The aim is to explore the intersection of community level initiatives and the development of a sustainable economy. In particular, it was believed that Scotland has developed some of the principles and practices of community based ownership of resources over the recent and distant past, and that this legacy could provide a model for how a more equitable, resilient, low carbon economy could be achieved in the future. Even if such an economy does not emerge, communities need to be strengthened so that they can support the needs of their members, especially if the contribution of governments is diminished. Whilst the Programme explored issues within Scotland in particular, many of the findings are also broadly relevant for other countries, and we drew on international examples as required. The goals of this Programme were to explore and design models for community resourcing, identify barriers for effective action in this area and highlight opportunities for future action. The planned output was the development of practical recommendations for the short, medium and long term, building on the combined knowledge of programme participants. The programme sought these goals through a series of interlinked seminars and also developed relationships between academics, practitioners and policy makers who are involved in various ways in this intellectual and practical space.
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Welcome to the UK’s top twenty “Transition oriented” social enterprises. Combined these enterprises have a turnover of £3.5 million and provide paid employment for more than 100 people. We think they’re rather brilliant examples of people just doing stuff. Each of these enterprises demonstrates a different way of working from business as usual – they are sustainable, offer some social benefits and have shared ownership, while providing essential goods and services for the community in which they make their home. They provide jobs for local people, as well as volunteering opportunities, and they buy from other local independent business. Most have emerged from a local Transition group or have links to Transition in some way.
Building a resource-efficient and circular economy in Europe: We are extracting and using more resources than our planet can produce in a given time. Current consumption and production levels are not sustainable and risk weakening our planet’s ability to provide for us. We need to reshape our production and consumption systems to enable us to produce the same amount of output with less resource, to re‑use, recover and recycle more, and to reduce the amount of waste we generate.
The American food system rests on an unstable foundation of massive fossil fuel inputs. It must be reinvented in the face of declining fuel stocks. The new food system will use less energy, and the energy it uses will come from renewable sources. We can begin the transition to the new system immediately through a process of planned, graduated, rapid change. The unplanned alternative-reconstruction from scratch after collapse-would be chaotic and tragic. The seeds of the new food system have already been planted. America's farmers have been reducing their energy use for decades. They are using less fertilizer and pesticide. The number of organic farms, farmers' markets, and CSA operations is growing rapidly. More people are thinking about where their food comes from. These are important building blocks, but much remains to be done. Our new food system will require more farmers, smaller and more diversified farms, less processed and packaged food, and less long-distance hauling of food. Governments, communities, businesses, and families each have important parts to play in reinventing a food system that functions with limited renewable energy resources to feed our population for the long term.
Our economy is geared, above all, to achieving growth. In times of recession especially, economic policy is all about returning to growth. But a financial crisis can also be an opportunity for some basic rethinking about what the economy is for, and how through some fundamental restructuring of our financial system we can safeguard our economic stability in the future, as well as achieving wider social and environmental benefits. In recent years, other objectives such as sustainability and wellbeing have moved up the political agenda. Over two years, the SDC's Redefining Prosperity project looked into the connections and conflicts between sustainability, wellbeing and growth. Following a series of seminars and commissioned think pieces, we published the report Prosperity without Growth? The transition to a low carbon economy, written by Professor Tim Jackson, the SDC's Economics Commissioner. Prosperity without Growth? analyses the complex relationships between growth, environmental crises and social recession. In the last quarter of a century, as the global economy has doubled in size, increases in consumption have caused the degradation of an estimated 60% of the world's ecosystems. The benefits of growth have been distributed unevenly, with a fifth of the world's population sharing just 2% of global income. Even in developed countries, huge gaps in wealth and well-being remain between rich and poor. Our report proposes a twelve step route to a sustainable economy, and argues for a redefinition of "prosperity" in light of our evidence on what really contributes to people’s wellbeing.
The Green Economy Report is compiled by UNEP’s Green Economy Initiative in collaboration with economists and experts worldwide. It demonstrates that the greening of economies is not generally a drag on growth but rather a new engine of growth; that it is a net generator of decent jobs, and that it is also a vital strategy for the elimination of persistent poverty. The report also seeks to motivate policy makers to create the enabling conditions for increased investments in a transition to a green economy.
This booklet is written and researched by Movingsounds, based on their innovative, creative work and rich experience in the field and is an extraordinary resource – a real treasure trove of ways to engage and work actively and creatively with groups of any age. It is published by Transition Scotland Support as part of a series of resources to help Transition groups in their work creating positive change in their communities.
The planetary phase of history has begun, but its ultimate shape is profoundly uncertain. Will global development veer toward a world of impoverished people, cultures and nature? Or will there be a Great Transition toward a future of enriched lives, human solidarity and environmental sustainability? These questions are addressed in the path-breaking essay Great Transition: The Promise and Lure of the Times Ahead. Paul Raskin, Tellus President, is lead author of this examination of the possibilities for a sustainable and desirable world. The essay describes the historic roots, current dynamics, future perils, and alternative pathways for world development. It advances one of these paths, Great Transition, as the preferred route, identifying strategies, agents of change, and values for a new global agenda. The essay's appraisal of the current global crossroads is disquieting. Conventional development is perilous, while the reform path to a sustainable future is problematic and uncertain. Yet, it shows that a fundamental change of direction is still possible. Progressive elements of civil society, government, international organizations, and business can forge a new sustainability paradigm, an alternative vision of globalization centered on the quality of life, human solidarity, environmental resilience, and an informed and engaged citizenry.
This paper is part of a broad effort to elaborate an inspiring and rigorous global visión for the future, and to identify a path forward. The paper has three major sections. The background section highlights data and findings relevant to the pursuit of well-being. The vision section describes a world in which successful pursuit of well-being in the norm. Finally, the pathways section articulates a multi-part strategy to foster interest in time affluence and to support its pursuit.
The Great Transition – from economic growth to growth in wellbeing. Broadcast from Bishopsgate Institute, London. A day of inspiring speakers, great music, thoughtful poets and tasty food. The purpose of this event was to discuss – and demonstrate – how we can move from a devotion to economic growth to the joy of wellbeing. Speakers included: Jonathon Porritt; Fiona Reynolds; Richard Layard; Caroline Lucas; Polly Higgins; Patrick Holden; Fiona Reynolds; Satish Kumar and Nic Marks. Musicians include: Barb Jungr; Craig Pruess and Sophie Stammers. Dance from Bhavan, and poetry from Matt Harvey and Martin Powell. The day celebrates Resurgence's 45th anniversary and also the merger of Resurgence and The Ecologist. The merger brings together Resurgence's focus on cultural, spiritual and artistic. Check out the videos from this event to learn more!