Making Transformative Geographies

Benedikt Schmid‘s recent book Making Transformative Geographies: Lessons from Stuttgart's Community Economy explores the making of post-growth urban futures by researching how twenty-four initiatives in the German city of Stuttgart are forging a more just and sustainable world.

Schmid highlights that one major finding of the research is that “there is no black and white between sustainable/unsustainable and degrowth/business-as-usual trajectories.”

In their quest to put in place more just and sustainable practices the initiatives in the study navigate constraints and opportunities, and make various trade-offs in order to remain viable.

CE News

Community Economies

La exposición de Katherine Gibson en el plenario de la Conferencia Liviana del CERN inaugural ahora está disponible online (en Youtube) apretando aquí.

En el plenario, titulado Thinking with Community Economies (“Pensando con Economías Comunitarias”, en español), Gibson exploró algunas de las formas en las que las economías comunitarias están llevando adelante, junto con otrxs, acciones para generar oportunidades éticas en el marco de las economías.

Community Economies

The plenary address by Katherine Gibson for the inaugural CERN Liviana Conference is now available online (on YouTube) by clicking here.

In the plenary, entitled Thinking with Community Economies, Gibson explored some of the ways that community economies scholars are thinking with and alongside others in order to strengthen opportunities for ethical economic actions, and she did this by focusing on two threads of community economies thinking.

Lake Budi Mutual Support Group

The final presentation in the CERN online Liviana conference was on the theme of Indigenous-led economic codesign, and was presented by Community Economy Research Network members Alison Guzman and Ignacio Krell who reflected on the process of working with the Mapuche-Lafkenche people of Lof Llaguepulli in the Lake Budi area of Chile to establish the Grupo de Apoyo Mutuo (or Mutual Support Group) that would serve the lives, lands, and values of the community.

The Interdependence

During the second week of the online Liviana conference The Interdependence was launched to an international audience.

The Interdependence is a multi-local alliance between community economies initiatives that identify as being part of the alliance by using the identifier .idt, an alternative to more familiar identifiers such as .ltd or Inc.

The Interdependence exists to make visible and to support people and organisations who perceive themselves as interdependent with others, and part of a larger movement to create economies that have the well-being of people and the planet at their core.

Black Women's Lives Matter

One of the highlights of the first week of the online Liviana conference was a panel ‘The Black Social Economy: Black Women and Cooperativism in the Americas and Beyond’ organised by Professor Caroline Shenaz Hossein from York University in Canada.

Professor Hossein’s introduction included an acknowledgement of the unceded territories on which the conference was taking place, and recognition of ancestors who toiled the land and those who continue to toil under unjust conditions.

Contagion Design

The recent online International Contagion Design Symposium featured four Community Economies Research Network (CERN) members from Australia, Britain and Europe who presented papers in a session on Contagious Mutualities.

El Cambalache

The Department of Decolonial Economics at El Cambalache is running on online Bootcamp Workshop in Decolonial Methods for Creating Social, Solidarity and Non-Hierarchical Economies.

The workshop will be in English and Spanish and will run from 18 to 22 January 2021, with applications open until all places are filled.

El Cambalache was founded in 2015 and is a moneyless economy project located in San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas and is made by and for women and everyone in their everyday networks, as featured in the documentary, Inter-Change Value (2016).

Liviana: CERN Online Conference

Coming to a screen near you! 2 to 14 Nov. 2020

#2020 Liviana Conference will be a decentralised series of exchanges and symposia over two weeks, providing an opportunity to connect and share. The event is based on the sense of openness, free-floating train of thought, and cheerful spirit that the Spanish term liviana connotes.

Full details at Liviana Online Conference website (including how to register for each session).

Sessions include:


On Thursday 8 October, Community Economies Research Network members were part of an appreciative audience for the Schumacher Center for a New Economics event, ‘Winona LaDuke and Leah Penniman in Conversation.’

Row of Cabbages

Urban gardening is increasingly popular in various countries across the globe but this practice means something quite different depending on the context, as highlighted by Community Economies Research Network member Dr Lucie Sovová in her PhD thesis, Grow, Share or Buy: Understanding the Diverse Economies of Urban Gardeners?, which she recently defended at Wageninen University, Netherlands.

Anne Paolina Image

As part of World Commons Week Dr Anne Poelina, a Nyikina Warrwa woman from the Kimberley region of Western Australia, delivered a keynote webinar entitled “Sharing the Commons of the Martuwarra Fitzroy River Estate for our Greater Good.”

The webinar was organised by the newly formed Oceania Regional Chapter of the International Association for the Study of the Commons (IASC) involving Community Economies Research Network (CERN) member Mairi Gunn.

An Ensemble of Possibilities

On Wednesday 30 September 2020, Community Economies Research Network (CERN) member Lauren Hudson presented a webinar, sponsored by the Society of Woman Geographers, entitled “‘An Ensemble of Possibilities’: Enunciating the Geography of New York City's Solidarity Economy.”

The presentation was based on Hudson’s doctoral research in which she explored how a ‘movement space’ is being created by those who work in New York’s solidarity economy, an economy in which economic activities such as production and exchange of goods and services draw on values of social justice, ecological sustainability, cooperation, mutualism and democracy.

Resources for Teaching Community Economies

Looking for ideas for teaching about diverse economies and community economies? The Community Economies website includes a range of resources.

With the Take Back the Economy website now up and running, there is a dedicated section on using the book in teaching.

Diverse Economies and Livable Worlds

Two books from the Diverse Economies and Livable Worlds book series won awards at the 2020 American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting earlier this year.

Lindsay Naylor’s 2019 book Fair Trade Rebels: Coffee Production and Struggles for Autonomy in Chiapas won the Julian Minghi Distinguished Book Award from the Political Geography specialty group.

Informal mining in the Philippines

Over three days in July, the International Association for the Study of the Commons (IASC) and the Research Institute for Humanity and Nature (RIHN) held a free online conference, Kyoto 2020, on the theme of Commons, Post-Development and Degrowth in Asia, and one of the presenters was CEI member Pryor Placino.

Urbanism without Guarantees

Christian Anderson’s recently published book Urbanism without Guarantees: The Everyday Life of a Gentrifying West Side Neighborhood, is an ethnographic account of the contemporary everyday urban challenges of living in the far West Side of Midtown Manhattan in New York City, an area known as Clinton/Hell’s Kitchen.

Anderson explains that “it is a story about what ordinary people do when it feels like the future is up for grabs as dynamics of disinvestment and urban decay, gentrification and displacement are being wrought in their neighborhoods.”

Rethinking Marxism Cover

The most recent edition of the journal Rethinking Marxism is a special issue “Gazing at Power in Community Economies” edited by Community Economies Institute (CEI) members Nate Gabriel and Eric Sarmiento (with Boone Shear).

“This special issue grew out of a panel session at the 2017 Annual Meeting of the American Association of Geographers in Boston,” explain Gabriel and Sarmiento.

The Feral MBA

The pilot of a new Feral MBA programme was run in Hobart (Tasmania, Australia) over 5 weeks in February and March, with the first graduating group celebrating the completion of the programme just one day before the first COVID-19 case was reported in Tasmania.

The Feral MBA is a radically re-imagined training course in business for artists and others that challenges business-as-usual concerns for competition, productivity and growth by arming participants with experimental skills and critical materials to consider and produce alternatives.