Essays

Writing on the Commons

In-depth special reports produced by CSG featuring commons-oriented approaches to solving the needs of communities and the environments they inhabit.

Re-imagining Value: Insights from the Care Economy, Commons, Cyberspace and Nature

What is “value” and how shall we protect it? It’s a simple question for which we don’t have a satisfactory answer. For conventional economists and politicians, the answer is simple: value is essentially the same as price. This report explains that how we define value says a lot about what we care about and how we make sense of things – and the political agendas we pursue.

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State Power and Commoning: Transcending a Problematic Relationship

Can commons and the state fruitfully co-exist – and if so, how? Can commoners re-imagine “the state” from a commons perspective so that its powers could be used to affirmatively support commoning and a post-capitalist, post-growth means of provisioning and governance?

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DEMOCRATIC MONEY AND CAPITAL FOR THE COMMONS

One of the more complicated, mostly unresolved issues facing most commons is how to assure the independence of commons when the dominant systems of finance, banking and money are so hostile to commoning. How can commoners meet their needs without replicating (perhaps in only modestly less harmful ways) the structural problems of the dominant money system?

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The Shift from Open Platforms to Digital Commons

From open access platforms to managed digital commons: how can we unleash the enormous value that distributed, autonomous production can create.

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The Commons as a Tool for Sharing the Wealth

David Bollier describes how the Commons (and Commons-based law) might be a force for reducing inequality

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A New Alignment of Movements? Part I: The General Challenge

The topic of the "deep dive": Can leading alt-economic and social movements find ways to work more closely together? Can there be a greater convergence and collaboration in fighting the pathologies of neoliberalism?

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A New Alignment of Movements? Part II: Strategies for a Convergence of Movements

In September 2014, the Commons Strategies Group convened a three-day workshop in Meissen, Germany, of 25 policy advocates and activists from a variety of different economic and social movements. Part two of two.

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Toward an Open Co-Operativism:

The P2P economy needs bridges between cooperative culture and the organizational forms that can sustain it and advance the general well-being of society.

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From the Communism of Capital to Capital for the Commons

Thus we have a paradox: the more communist the sharing license used in the peer production of free software or open hardware, the more capitalist the practice.

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Economics and the Common(s): Conference Report

While no account of a conference can be fully comprehensive, we believe that this report can serve as a useful guide to people interested in the commons as a robust, growing movement.

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The commons as a common paradigm for social movements and beyond

We can only promote the commons as a new narrative for the 21st century if they are identified as a common denominator by different social movements and schools of thought. In my point of view, enforcing the commons would be not only possible, but strategically intelligent.

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Towards a new reconfiguration among the state, civil society and the market

An outline of the general aspects of a political agenda for a gradual transition to a commons-oriented, social knowledge economy.

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