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Updated: 4 hours 39 min ago

The Case for “Disruptive Normality”

October 24, 2016 - 11:18

The Duwamish Cohousing complex in West Seattle, Washington. Photo credit: Joe Mabel

In recent years, we’ve started to see cases of promising sharing and collaborative practices falling into the traps of neoliberal ways of thinking and doing: carpooling and time-banking ideas transforming into the likes of Uber and TaskRabbit, co-housing concepts producing closed and exclusive gated communities, and so on.

Categories: Economics

Public Food Forests on the Rise

October 24, 2016 - 06:13

Article and images cross-posted from Made Local magazine. Story by Leilani Clark. Photos by Nat and Cody Photography.

Categories: Economics

Two New Reports Confirm Social, Environmental Benefits of Carsharing

October 20, 2016 - 02:43

Two new TSRC reports analyze survey data from Zipcar for Universities and car2go. (Christopher Schmidt / Flickr)

Categories: Economics

Policing Airbnb: Startups Emerge to Keep Illicit Short-Term Rentals in Check

October 19, 2016 - 05:36

While the regulatory tug-of-war between those concerned with the negative impacts of Airbnb on affordable housing and the home rental giant continue, the emergence of a new industry signals that the problem of illegal short-term rentals may be larger than Airbnb admits.

A number of new businesses are operating as a type of Airbnb police, making money by finding hosts that break laws and / or lease agreements by running what are essentially illegal hotels.

Categories: Economics

Americans Value Libraries, but Divided About How They Should Be Used

October 19, 2016 - 05:21

As libraries continue their transformation from places that house books into multi-faceted tech centers and hubs for a wide variety of innovative programs -- including

Categories: Economics

Repair Cafe and Seeing the Beauty in Broken Things

October 18, 2016 - 06:59

Actually, in Silicon Valley, some engineers do still work with their hands, some people appreciate the beauty in broken things and some people help each other for free for the fun and good will of it. Here's a story of how that happened all at once for me.

Categories: Economics

16 Ways to Lead a Zero Waste Life

October 18, 2016 - 05:15

With just 111 possessions and an adventurer’s heart, Rob Greenfield is on a mission to create a “happier, healthier existence for all humans, creatures, and plants.”

Categories: Economics

Consider Joining a Nonprofit Member-Owned Bank on International Credit Union Day

October 17, 2016 - 10:54

It seems like hardly a week goes by without some Big Bank's fraudulent scheme coming to light. Food and Water Watch released a stunning graphic last month that shows how more than 30 banks from around the world have extended billions in credit to the companies behind the Dakota Access pipeline.

Categories: Economics

How Democracy Collaborative Will Create 50 Million Employee Owners by 2050

October 17, 2016 - 06:56

There are currently an estimated 10 million employee owners in the U.S. What if that number grew to 50 million by 2050? What kind of impact could that have on individual lives, local communities and the national economy? One project aims to find out.

50 by 50 is an initiative designed to make employee ownership—through worker cooperatives, employee stock ownership plans, and other models— a "major part of the U.S. economy.”

Categories: Economics

Former Army Base Could Become World's First Sharing Economy Mega Commune

October 17, 2016 - 03:30

Army bases often must be all-inclusive. Many of them feature housing, schools, medical clinics, department stores, gas stations and other services in order to fully support service people and their families. Such was the case for Patrick Henry Village -- the U.S. Army base established in Heidelberg, Germany at the end of World War II. Though it once boasted a population of 16,000, Patrick Henry Village has been largely deserted since it closed in 2013, save for its use as a refugee camp late last year.

Categories: Economics

New Social Movement Board Game Pits Activists Against "The System"

October 17, 2016 - 03:29

The creators of Co-opoly: The Game of Cooperatives are back! The Toolbox for Education and Social Action (TESA) folks are currently crowdfunding their latest project -- Rise Up: The Game of People and Power.

Categories: Economics

The Blockchain: Change Everything Forever

October 13, 2016 - 08:14

Article cross-posted from P2P Foundation. Authored by Ruth Catlow.

This new film by Furtherfield in collaboration with Digital Catapult broadens the current debate about the impact of emerging blockchain technologies.

Categories: Economics

How to Scientifically Measure a Coworking Space to Increase Productivity

October 12, 2016 - 07:42

Authored by Joshua Ng, creative director at The Connectors Society, a Swedish interdisciplinary studio blending collective intelligence and urban design.

Coworking spaces aim to replace the stiff, competitive, closed office with an open, community-based environment. As coworking grows, the variet of spaces also grows. While many are open-plan spaces that offer meeting rooms and private offices, a growing number offer facilities for people whose main work tool is not a laptop.

Categories: Economics

Freelancers Are Here...and They're Voting

October 12, 2016 - 06:58

Once a fringe group of disconnected workers, the freelance workforce has become an increasingly organized community and voting bloc.

Categories: Economics

Art Co-ops and the Power of Mobilizing Collaboration for Creativity

October 11, 2016 - 11:32

Brian Eno rejected the lone genius myth — the idea that groundbreaking works of art arise out of a notable few graced with exceptional talent. Instead, he observed that good artwork doesn't miraculously emerge from a few great figures, but from relationships. He coined the term “scenius” to reflect the genius that arises out from social relationships or "scenes" of novel creativity and thought. 

Categories: Economics

How Freelancers Are Reinventing Work Through New Collective Enterprises

October 11, 2016 - 09:49

Seats2Meet headquarters in Utrecht, Netherlands by Neal Gorenflo

In 2008, Alanna Krause hit a wall. Just 25 years old and already rising through the corporate ranks as a global technical support team leader at Bloomberg in London, Krause began to feel that her work was “meaningless.”

“No matter how well I did my job or how much I improved things, ultimately what I was doing was moving numbers from one column to another column,” Krause said.

Categories: Economics

How to Create Happier, Healthier Nonprofits

October 11, 2016 - 07:35

Nonprofit burnout is real. Beth Kanter, an internationally-recognized nonprofit trainer and author who has worked in the field for 35 years, knows this all too well. Kanter has seen firsthand what overwork, overwhelm and an always-on lifestyle can do to organizations and individuals, including herself.

Categories: Economics

Voting with Every Dollar We Spend: Business Models that Build Community Resilience

October 6, 2016 - 14:21

There’s so much attention on the upcoming election, and with good reason: our future is at stake. But it’s important to remember that political power is tied to economic power, and we vote every day for the kind of world we want to live in with every dollar we spend and every purchase we make.

Categories: Economics

A Commons Approach to the Challenges of Our Time

October 5, 2016 - 07:27

“When faced with the massive crises of our time, the most logical response is paralysis. What can an individual possibly do about something so massive and complex?”

This was the question posed recently by David Bollier, a policy strategist, activist, and a leading voice in the commons movement.

Categories: Economics