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RIPESS EU’s online Extraordinary General Assembly

On 23 April 2020, an exceptional online General Assembly of RIPESS Europe was held, bringing together some thirty members from all over Europe (link to the list of members). Several themes were discussed even if the first half of the GA was entirely devoted to Covid-19 and how everyone was managing this unprecedented crisis.

From Portugal to Germany, via Greece and Russia, each of the members enlightened us on the current situation in their countries but also on how their governments were managing the crisis and on their feelings and actions taken to deal with the crisis as SSE actors. We were thus able to perceive a sort of European “panorama” of the problems linked to the crisis, the obstacles encountered and the solutions provided by SSE organisations.

Certain themes were often mentioned, such as the lack of means and support from the authorities and the advocacy work of certain networks, but also and above all the general development of various solidarity practices, such as helping the most defenceless facing the crisis or the growing demand by populations for local and fair consumption, the resilience of SSE but the enormous degree of uncertainty for the future in the short and medium term. You can find all the interventions of the members, classified by country, in the GA notes.

The discussion then focused on the presentation of Ripess Europe’s Strategic Plan for the period 2020-2022. A three-dimensional strategy with the objectives of :

  • promote territorial ecosystems and support the emergence of new networks;
  • pursue the development and recognition of the solidarity economy ;
  • strengthen existing alliances and create new ones.

You can find more information about the Strategic Plan in the GA notes.

Finally, various cooperation projects between members were announced: the implementation of a questionnaire among members followed by video interviews organized by the communication group of Ripess Europe; the presentation of Smarketplace, a project of the Swiss Chamber of Social and Solidarity Economy (Apres-Ge); and the project around the  of measurement of the social utility of SSE presented by APES-France.

Good economy conference hosting the RIPESS Europe General Assembly
Good Economy Conference

On the 15th of June 2018, the 5th Good Economy Conference will take place, followed by the 7th General Assembly of RIPESS Europe (April 16-17). Organized by the Green Network of Activists Groups and the Platform for Good Economy, these two meetings are taking place in Zagreb, Croatia.  You’re all invited to participate!

The Good Economy Conference became in the past years a unique place in Croatia and the Balkan region, gathering activists and people that create and live different forms of alternative economy:  there are practitioners building “good economy” models, capable of supporting and strengthening our local communities and societies. The conference represents the opportunity to share ideas and knowledge, to cooperate on new paths, projects and common initiatives. Now in its fifth year, advocating for good and solidarity economy is going even further, with the RIPESS – Solidarity Economy Europe Network’s General Assembly taking place in Zagreb right after the Conference, will create a space for more cooperation between regional good economy activists and solidarity economy initiatives from all over Europe.

Once again, we are focusing on real stories and models that are already here, around us! A world of “collaborative economy” practices, with concepts of “open factory” owned by its employees, ecological and social enterprises, hotels run by immigrants and former refugees, cities organised on participatory governance, movements for collective ownership and a fairer work sector dealing at the same time between the cooperatives rich tradition and the new technologies of the 21st century.

[by Drazen Simlesa (Zmag / Good Economy Platform) and Jason Nardi (RIPESS Europe)]

General Assembly of RIPESS Europe 2017 (summary)

RIPESS Europe – Solidarity Economy Europe’s General Assembly took place in the context of the UniverSSE Congress, in the premises of the agricultural University in Athens, on Friday June 9, 2017 and according to the usual operation of the European network, when the AG takes place in the framework of a Congress, it was a shorter meeting. Read more

Be part of the Universse 2017: Call for Ideas for the 4th European SSE Congress in Athens

Be part of the Universse 2017

Democratising Economy, Emancipating Society, Empowering Change

The 4th European Social Solidarity Economy (SSE) Congress will take place in Athens on the 9/10/11th of June. Cooperatives, grassroots initiatives, SSE organisations, groups and people that work to promote and advance SSE from all over Europe will meet for the event.

During the 3day Congress, we are going to have the opportunity to discuss and exchange ideas, experiences, expertise and common strategies around SSE. We consider SSE to be a dynamic space that spreads all over Europe, in which people organise their social and economic activity in many different ways.

This event is a great opportunity to enhance SSE’s visibility in Greece and to build strong connections amongst people, groups and coops on a European level.

We are also happy to announce that the 6th General Assembly of RIPESS EU – Solidarity Economy Europe will be held in Athens as well, as part of the Congress.

Call for ideas

While the organisation team works for the success of this congress, we are looking forward to receiving your ideas regarding the following themes that wprioritiseze to discuss during the 3day Congress.

The procedure will be the following:

Every group, network or individual that is interested in participating on the process of formulating the program, could send ideas according to the following axes, until 05/03/2017 through our email: call@universse2017.org

Proposed axes:

1) Concepts, forms and fields of social solidarity economy and cooperativism

2) Responsible consumption, production and climate change

3) Practices of SSE on social integration with a special focus on refugees issues

4) Social innovation: Research, technology, education and tools for SSE

5) Commons: Approaches and practices on digital, natural, urban, cultural common goods

6) Public policies (on local, national, European level) promoting SSE : From whom, for who, what for.

7) Open space / Free zone

We invite ideas indicating the thematic area you refer to and the format of the meeting you propose (workshop, panel discussion, etc.). After the deadline (05/03/2017), the organizational team will assess all proposals and arrange them in clusters. Within these clusters we will make an effort to include as many ideas sent as possible.

The main intention is to organize the Congress along with the main axes (plus the free zone area) in order to enable a common vision while allowing for the exchange of different perspectives and experiences.

Check for updates and contact us

Organizational Team contact: call@universse2017.org – www.universse2017.org

Ripess EU contact: info@ripess.eu – www.ripess.eu

4th European Solidarity Economy Congress in Athens, 9-11 June 2017
December 18, 2016
Athens 2017

SAVE THE DATE!  The next European SSE Congress (and RIPESS General Assembly) will take place in Athens, Greece on the 9-10-11th of June 2017, as decided in the last General Assembly in Villarceaux, Paris. The local organising committee is coordinated by DOCK – Social and solidarity economy zone.

DOCK is the Greek initiative that emerged from Solidarity for All as a new, independent organisation dedicated to the promotion of SSE in Greece, contribute to the networking while they build a supporting infrastructure for existing and potential SSE initiatives.
An organisational team has been already formed and has start to work in all aspects of the Congress. The general framework will be arround the role of SSE in re-inventing democracy and building networked alternatives. Some of the thematics zones that are already proposed are SSE and refugees, SSE and commons, public policies, SSE and cooperativism movement, social impact, peer learning.
In the coming months, a process of co-construction of the event programme will be activated to which all groups, networks and organizations practising forms of social economy and solidarity are invited. We strongly invite you to contribute to the formulation of the contents of the Congress by telling us what you would like to share from your work and initiatives. Furthermore we would like you to propose what themes or in which areas of SSE you would prefer to exchange and learn from the experiences of others.

For more information: info@ripess.eu

A General Assembly under the sign of openness and conviviality

La Bergerie de Villarceaux, lovely eco-centre and organic farm outside Paris, was the convivial setting for RIPESS Europe’s 5th General Assembly, which took place from 20 to 22 June 2016, thanks to the hospitality of the Foundation for the Progress of Humankind (FPH). Several new members and observers participated.

During an opening session, Claudia Neubauer presented the FPH and its positioning with respect to the Social Solidarity Economy (SSE). Jean Louis Laville gave a indepth perspective of the potential role of the SSE to respond against the growing ecological and social economic violations by the globalized neo-liberal system. Stressing the need to establish effective cooperation with public institutions, Laville stated that the SSE should works in the direction of a just transition by encouraging new forms of collaboration between the SSE and the public policy actors. After the meal prepared by the Bergerie’s restaurant team with their locally produced food, the evening was devoted to the presentation of the activities and motivations of participants wishing to become new RIPESS Europe members. Read more

GA 2016 Workshops
RIPESS Europe General Assembly Meeting 2016
Ecocentre Bergerie de Villarceaux

This year the General Assembly Meeting will be held in France, near Paris, at the Bergerie de Villarceaux (as in 2014) thanks to the hospitality of the FPH – Foundation Charles Leopold Mayer for the Progress of Humankind.  The dates are 20-22 of June 2016.

All members of RIPESS Europe are invited to participate, as well as some guests, observers and perspective from other networks and initiatives in Europe.  The last General Assembly was in September 2015, during the Solikon congress which was organised by the German Forum Solidarische Oekonomie and co-organised by RIPESS EU, and opened to the general public. This year (as every two years) the GA will be mainly for the members to discuss and approve the Strategic Orientations 2016-2018, the plan of action and the different inter-cooperation activities.

If you are not a member of RIPESS EU and would like to participate as a potential member, please write to: info@ripess.eu

Solikon 2015: over 1400 participants in Berlin!

The Solidarity Economy European Congress – Solikon 2015 has brought together over 1400 participants from all over Europe and beyond (Brasil, USA, Canada, Cuba, Korea, Japan, and many other countries).  More than 100 workshops, Forums and Round Tables took place at the Technischen Universität in Berlin, to discuss alternative forms of economics, lifestyle and work. The “Week of Change” that took place in the week before the Congress (from 5th-9 th September), allowed for 500 people to go visit solidarity economy projects in Berlin and the Brandenburg region.  RIPESS Europe organized many international activities, including a convergence forum with many different alter-economic movements’ representatives, as well as it’s Annual General Meeting, welcoming new members from Greece, Croatia, France, the United Kingdom and Belgium.

Concrete solutions and action

Thirty-four tours, excursions and visits to initiatives and solidarity economy projects in Berlin. They resonated deeply with all the participants. People visited the collective enterprises, swap shops and Community Supported Agriculture farms, and many other initiatives. This short documentary film gives a good idea of what the Week of Change was like.

There was a broad consensus that we can all do something here and now to prepare for this change. As Rosangela Alves de Oliveira said in the Regional forum “Action is what brings about change rather than just ideas”.

Participants also agreed on the fact that Capitalism has failed (as journalist Paul Mason, author of “Post Capitalism: a Guide to our Future”, explained in the opening session). It leads to exclusion, increased precariousness in relationships at work and also destroys nature.   Solidarity economy is trying to find ways to radically change approach: how can we build an environmentally friendly, sustainable solidarity economy, based on cooperation and holistic, collective approaches rather than competition and profiteering?

From the collective kitchen to alternative financial instruments – where theory meets pratice!

Over 200 speakers from 20 countries put forward their ideas and proposals. These speakers included some well-known actors, such as Paul Singer (Secretary of State for Solidarity Economy in the Ministry for Labour in Brazil), Brid Brennan (Trans National Institute), Michel Bauwens (P2P Foundation), Rudi Dalvai (World Fair Trade Organisation), Ugo Biggeri (Banca Etica), Jean Luis Laville (CNAM), Nina Treu and Barbara Muraca (Degrowth), Christian Felber (Gemeinwohlökonomie)… and many others. In between workshops and plenaries, many meetings and discussions took place at the lunch and dinner breaks, prepared by an association helping refugees and with a collaborative dish washing by all participants.

Here is what RIPESS Europe organized or promoted (download pdf)

You can also find some multimedia documentation here:
PICS: https://www.flickr.com/photos/130033842@N04/
TWEETS: https://twitter.com/Solikon2015
RADIO: http://cba.fro.at/295046

More information and reports on the RIPESS AGM and on each event will be available soon.

Berlin 2015: 7 new members join RIPESS EU
September 14, 2015

During the General Assembly meeting in Berlin on September 11 – inside Solikon 2015 –  7 new members were approved and voted in by the RIPESS EU assembly, from 6 countries (but actually representing more, as some are inter sectorial networks): Solidarity 4 All (Greece), Ensie (Belgium), Good Economy Platform (Croatia), Ecosol (France), Autre Terre (Belgium), Institute for Solidarity Economics (UK), Spread-i (UK).  As we welcome them into the European network, there will be more and more exchanges and inter-cooperation taking place, as well as the enrichment of the common strategy process (which will help better define the actions to be taken in the next three years) and the widening the spectrum of the Panorama of Solidarity Economy across the European continent.

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