The movement of the commons: On the role of citizens in reclaiming public services

At the most recent World Economic Forum in Davos, its founder, Klaus Schwab, make a remarkable statement. The overall focus of the WEF this year was on the ‘fractured world’ we are living in. Schwab declared we need a new social contract, our societies have to rebuild their foundations, our world needs ‘qualitative easing’ and so we have to look beyond GDP in order to work at inclusive development… While such a statement might have come from the left, Schwab added something very WEF-like. This timed, he said, I think that business should take the lead to make the recovery efforts through the social crisis, and of course business can work with governments and civil society… Continue…

Fighting neoliberalism and the privatisation of public services: The struggle for social commons

  1. Our public services, education, health care, public transport … all belong to our systems of social protection, systems that we need and have to promote because they are essential for our individual and collective survival. Individuals are not self-sufficient, they are interdependent.

This is an easy statement,  but the question is how we try to achieve the existence of universal quality public services for all. We know that the current neoliberal philosophy wants governments to cut public spending, and, in general, social expenditures are severely limited. Continue…

Social Justice: the struggle for commons

It is so easy to talk about social justice, yet, so difficult to achieve it!

In fact, our world today is faced with two major challenges: ecological destruction and the social question. What I want to explain very briefly in this paper, is how the concept of commons and the practice of commoning, can help to find solutions. Both problems are closely linked to each other, and are closely linked to democracy, that is the way citizens can govern and shape their world and give direction to the policies that are needed to preserve our planet and sustain the livelihoods of people.

Now, what do we mean when we speak about commons?

It is becoming a buzzword, but it is very important to know exactly what we are speaking about, so that we can avoid misunderstandings. Continue…

Post-capitalism, basic income and the end of work: a critique and an alternative

an interesting article of F.H. Pitts and A.C. Dinerstein

“This paper critiques popular academic understandings of development towards a post-capitalist,
post-work society based around the automation of production and the provision of a basic income to
those displaced by its effects. By focusing on work and its escape as the central issue at stake in the
transition to a postcapitalist society, these accounts miss how, at one end, capitalist work is
preconditioned by a historically-specific set of antagonistic social relations of constrained social
reproduction, and, at the other, by the specific social forms assumed by the results of that work in
commodity exchange and the constituted form of the nation-state.”