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Europe falters, but SSE stands firm

Europe is under heavy weather: it is undermined by populism, legitimately contested by all those who consider it too dependent on the big financial and industrial powers, and defended by all humanists who do not wish to see nationalism take hold again, who do not believe in isolationism but rather imagine a space for exchange, positive cooperation and a culture of the common good. The present challenges, especially those of the preservation of the Planet and even of the humankind, can only be resolved by using our collective intelligence and our combined strength to jointly build the paths towards our future.

RIPESS EU – Solidarity Economy Europe has set itself the task of linking the actors of social transformation for a better future that benefits us all. That is the underlying meaning of the activities in which our members are involved, and continue to implement. This objective implies that alliances should be undertaken with more or less key prospects, all our approaches being above all aimed to converge and join other like-minded energies. This is the spirit with which we participated in the NESI Forum (New Economy and Social Innovation) that was held in Malaga from April 19 to 21. It was mainly constituted by a large number of energy and social transition organizations.

The divergence of views and opinions has helped to have rich debates and exchange of ideas, reaching from social entrepreneurship to solidarity economy, as the Forum brought together many people of good will who actively participate in the renewal of the paradigm of economic thought (and practice).

There were some 700 participants from 43 countries at the Forum. A Charter – RIPESS EU participated in the drafting committee – and “100 actions to change the world” emerged from the numerous workshops that took place. There will undoubtedly be follow ups, in particular on the theme of the Commons.

RIPESS Europe will participate in the International Forum for Social and Solidarity Economy entitled “Engagement, citizenship and development: how to train in SSE”, on May 22-24 in Marrakech (Morocco). The meeting i organized by the Inter-university Network for SSE (sRIUESS), in partnership with our RIPESS Morocco and African counterparts REMESS, and RAESS. At the end of the forum, which will bring together more than 150 Francophone researchers from Europe and Africa, the various networks have scheduled a meeting to discuss possible future cooperation in the field of training.

Finally, our network’s General Assembly will be held at the 4th European Solidarity Economy Congress in Athens – organized by a group of Greek actors in partnership with RIPESS Europe. It is a very good opportunity to return to the Greek capital after our first visit to Solidarity4all in 2014, when the SSE was seeking its identity, without even having developed a real definition. Since then, it has evolved in a country where it represents, more than anywhere else, the oxygen necessary for the survival of citizens asphyxiated by the austerity measures imposed on their country. This event promises to be rich in content, opportunities for debate and joyful festivities. Let us welcome the inventiveness of our Greek friends who called it UNIVERSSE 2017. We hope to see you there, together with many others and hope that the beautiful energy of the inventors of the future will circulate there with serenity.

[Josette Combes]

A Charter for Data (and Mapping) Commons

One of the earliest such maps was TransforMap, a project with origins in Austria and Germany that is using OpenStreetMap as a platform for helping people identify and connect with alternative economic projects. In the US, CommonSpark assembled a collection of “maps in the spirit of the commons” such as the Great Lakes Commons Map (a bioregional map of healing and harm), World of Commons(innovative forms of citizen-led governance of public property and services in Italy), Falling Fruit (a global map identifying 786,000 locations of forgeable food), a map of Free Little Libraries (free books available in neighborhoods around the world), a global Hackerspace map, a global Seed Map, a map of all Transition communities, and several Community Land Trustdirectory maps.

As the varieties of maps proliferate, there is growing concern that the mapping projects truly function as commons and be capable of sharing data and growing together. But meeting this challenge entails some knotty technical, social and legal issues.

A group of mappers met at the Commons Space sessions of the World Social Forum in Montreal last year to try to make progress on the challenge.  The dialogues continued at an “Intermapping” workshop in Florence, Italy, last month. After days of deep debate and collaboration, the mappers came up with a document that outlines twelve key principles for developing effective data and mapping commons. The Charter for Building a Data Commons for a Free, Fair and Sustainable Future is the fruit of those dialogues.

The Charter’s authors describe the document as “the maximum ‘commons denominator’ of mapping projects that aspire to share data for the common good.” If you follow these guidelines,” write the mappers, “you will contribute to a Global Data Commons. That is, you will govern your mapping community and manage data differently than people who centralize data control for profit.”

“The Charter does not describe the vision, scope or values of a specific mapping project.  It is rather an expression of Data Commons principles. It will help you reimagine how you protect the animating spirit of your mapping project and prevent your data from being co-opted or enclosed.” Read more

Media: STIR (UK) community toolbox special issue

“Our spring  2017 issue is a Community Toolbox of illustrated how-tos and articles to support more community-led change. With so many communities now interested in buying local assets and using co-operative governance, we decided to invite leading practitioners to introduce a tool and how it works.

How do you engage your local community? One way to start is to co-create a Local Economicc Blueprint. This tool is about bringing people together to explore how to change procurement strategies  at local anchor institutions, the opportunities for import substitution, and how to support local enterprises. It’s a really useful tool that allows you to identify local needs and build a strategy on how to get there, without assuming what the community needs. “

To help you set up, this issue addresses different themes:

  • What is Community Economic Development?
  • How to Create a Local Economic Blueprint?
  • How to Make Decisions Online ?
  • How to Make a Community Space Work
  • How to Set up a Community Co-op

You can find more informations here:

https://www.stirtoaction.com/issues/issue-17

You can should more informations specifically  about solidarity economy on this issue:

https://www.stirtoaction.com/issues/issue-16

About the Magazine

STIR magazine is a quarterly print magazine of new economic ideas and original art in 2013. We publish international contributors on the co-operative movement, the global commons, solidarity economics and many other emerging political practices. Moving beyond traditional political commentary, we explore the inspiring and viable alternatives that represent a serious challenge to the current political crisis.

STIR magazine explores community ownership, co-operatives, post-growth economics, food sovereignty, alternative finance, law and social change, open data, cultural activism, peer-to-peer production, and the future of work.
Sources: https://www.stirtoaction.com/

Barcelona : The 2016–2019 Plan to boost Social Solidarity Economy

This document, titled The Impetus Plan for the Social and Solidarity Economy in Barcelona, is the result of a municipal initiative. Its aim is to offer a transformative socio-economic vision of the urban reality. It includes an action programme and aims to contribute towards reducing social and territorial inequalities, while promoting an economy at the service of people and of social justice.

The Impetus Plan comprises a diagnosis, the development process and the set of actions desired to be carried out in the city over the coming years. It is structured into the following parts:

— The social and solidarity economy in Barcelona: analyses the reality of the transformative socio-economic fabric of the city and its roll-out across the territory

— The Planning Process: explains the process involved in drafting the Plan and related co-production and co-responsibility dynamics.

— Contents of the Plan: describes the general and specfic objectives, lines of work, measures and actions to be implemented.

— Development of the Plan: indicates the different agents involved in the Plan’s execution and spaces for joint and participatory work.

— Budget, Monitoring and Evaluation: details the budgetary allocations, as well as the impact assessment criteria used.

— Annex. Towards a New Socio-Economic Policy:  an overview of the plural economy and of the proposal for the city’s socio-economic transformation.

Source: Socioeco.org

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