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Psst: Working less is the key to success.  Want to make employees happier and more productive? Give them a four-day work week. The concept was introduced in the 1950s by American labor union leader Walter Reuther, but it’s taken a long time for the country to come around to...
Self-organized commons are undergoing a renaissance today as one of the most robust alternatives to modern-day capitalism. Mention the commons and most people conjure up the image of a bucolic English pasture. The commons were the fields and forests where medieval commoners...
Like a few other cities, the city is letting some citizens vote directly on how the city spends its money. But, of course, it's adding an online twist.   The heart of Silicon Valley is experimenting with a novel form of direct democracy that gives citizens direct control...
The Transition movement is a loose network of thousands of communities (ranging from favelas in Brazil to Japanese towns; from rural villages in England to Transition Los Angeles) unified in their drive to devise and implement positive solutions that build local resilience...
Almost everywhere we look, there is an emerging debate on the importance of sharing in relation to the grave challenges of our time. This conversation is most apparent in the sharing economy movement that has now taken the United States and Western Europe by storm, opening up...
Shared ownership helps to diversify rather than concentrate wealth and roots the value it generates in communities. Inequality has become an embarrassing social reality for more and more global citizens – a reality that we seem very far away from solving. One particular...
At its annual meeting last week, the U.S. Conference of Mayors (USCM) adopted a pair of resolutions endorsing postal banking, co-signed by eight mayors from six states. Their goal is to bring $1 trillion of job-creating economic stimulus primarily to low-income neighborhoods...
I believe it was Oscar Wilde who said: "Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else's opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.” I think this is true, and I think the consequences of it being true are as pervasive as they are...
A quiet revolution is rumbling through New York's municipal offices as they retool to support the creation of worker cooperatives as a way to fight poverty. Spurred by the powerful example of immigrant-owned cleaning cooperatives and the longstanding example of Cooperative...
If you are one of the 135 million people [1] who have contacted Congress by letter, phone call, or online petition in the last few years, you've probably asked yourself: "Did that matter?" Despite how good your civic action may have made you feel, the overwhelming odds are...
As history has shown, France is capable of the best and the worst, and often in short periods of time. On the day following Marine Le Pen's Front National victory in the European elections, however, France made a decisive contribution to the reinvention of a radical...
David Korten's new essay (available to read as a PDF) connects the work of finding a new sacred story with the effort to build a new economy. Those who follow my work are aware that I believe a viable human future depends on navigating a deep cultural and institutional...
During the 15 years, I lived and worked in Asia as a development professional from 1978 to 1992, I witness a troubling paradox. GDP was growing, incomes were rising, there was an expanding middle class, and a few people were getting fabulously rich. Development seemed to be...
Most people – even many of those who support small farms and eat organic food – believe that there’s no way to feed the global population without the use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, fossil fuels, biotechnology, heavy equipment, and the rest of the agribusiness...
This is easily the best comic strip ever made.
It has been one year since my last shower. Yes, I know that sounds crazy and a year ago I would have agreed with you. I was a regular showering guy for the first 26 years of my life. Well, maybe not every single day, but just about. So how does a regular showering guy end up...
Back in in the day, an activist colleague of mine liked to wisecrack that whenever corporations talked about environmental solutions everyone could live with, what they meant were "solutions" only a politically acceptable number of people would die from. That is so 1980s...
Half of all Canadians want it. The Swiss have had a referendum on it. The idea's not as far-fetched as it sounds What if you could receive a guaranteed basic yearly income with no strings attached? Didn’t matter how much money you made now, or in the future. Nobody would ask...
First, the bad news: Even if the economy improves, middle-class career paths will continue to disappear as globalization and technological innovation render more jobs obsolete. Now, the good news: The fear, stress and humiliation caused by unemployment (and underemployment)...
This is what real revolution looks like. This is the future. Ron Finley in South Central LA was tired of living in a food desert and he decided to do something about it. He took back control over his food supply and health, while also setting his community on a path towards...
If the aim of human society is happiness, freedom, and prosperity, there are indeed many alternative ways to achieve this without endangering the earth and ourselves, and without leaving behind half or more of humanity. This applies to India as to any other country, though...
The Universal Basic Income (UBI) – sometimes called the Unconditional Basic Income, Citizens’ Income or Social Wage – has in recent times become a focus of economic discussion across the political spectrum. While column inches in the Financial Times and The Economist have...
A new post-carbon era dawns as the old fossil fuel system dies. It's time to step up.   Last Friday, I posted an exclusive report about a new NASA-backed scientific research project at the 
So you’ve been to the playa, and you’ve seen the promised land – the promise of freedom, of self-expression, of immediacy and creativity and community.  The playa fed you, and it changed you.  It provided you opportunities for growth, you took advantage of those...
Yesterday a teenager sent me an email letter in which he said, "I feel cheated that it's all UP TO ME. By being in the younger generation, I have to save the world before I can even begin to think of building a life for myself, or there will be nothing to build my life...
A friend of mine invited me to attend the World Ocean Summit titled “Sustainability and Governance” hosted by The Economist recently at the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Half Moon Bay, CA. Sponsored by Shell, DNV-GL, and Google among others, it was attended by three hundred people...
Over the last two decades, the Internet has been a laboratory for social innovation. One of the most unexpected collective discoveries has been the existence of another mode of organization to achieve large-scale co-ordination. This mode relies neither on the market, where...
2013 was another incredible year for fantastic, forward thinking social change films. More films pushing the envelope of creative thinking. More films giving a voice to the cutting edge ideas and perspectives of the global movement for a better world. More films telling the...
Hamburg City Council has disclosed ambitious plans to divert most cars away from its main thoroughfares in twenty years. In order to do so, local authorities are to connect pedestrian and cycle lanes in what is expected to become a large green network. In all, the Grünes Netz...
ALONIA, Greece — The feisty owner of a small family business that makes detergents has never had time for anticapitalist firebrands. So he was suspicious and skeptical when he was approached by left-leaning activists campaigning to purge “profiteers” from the market. But...
The economic and legal system rewards corporations that bulldoze, stripmine and burn. A new law against ecocide could halt this destruction. Designer Vivienne Westwood expressed anguish and alarm at the worsening state of the planet, at a press conference yesterday. "The...
Do you agonize over the little venial eco-sins of everyday life? Every gallon of gas, every extra minute of a hot shower, each flush? I was the same way. Yet somehow, despite constantly policing myself, I was never satisfied. Instead of feeling like I was doing anything to...
Privacy Tools: How to Build Better Passwords by Julia Angwin ProPublica, Jan. 21, 2014, 10:19 a.m. (©iStock.com/Brilt) In the course of writing my book, Dragnet Nation, I tried various strategies to protect my privacy. In this series of blog posts, I try to distill the...
I’d like to offer you an invitation, an invocation, a wake up call.   I’m inviting you – me, we – to celebrate the astounding goodness of our essential beings, the goodness of this gorgeous miraculous unsurpassable earth glittering like a green emerald in the vastness of an...
In restorative justice, those who commit crimes have to face the consequences of their actions. After this Colorado policeman tried it out, he came to believe it's part of the answer to America's prison problem.   It's a warm summer night in Longmont, Colo., a vibrant...
Earthships are 100% sustainable homes that are both cheap to build and awesome to live in. They offer amenities like no other sustainable building style you have come across. For the reasons that follow, I believe Earthships can actually change the world. See for...
At first glance, Quiet Time - a stress reduction strategy used in several San Francisco middle and high schools, as well as in scattered schools around the Bay Area - looks like something out of the om-chanting 1960s. Twice daily, a gong sounds in the classroom and rowdy...
Deciding to Offer Web Design in a Gift Economy Changed My Life. Here’s How.   Last weekend, someone who is very important to me wrote something kind about me on Facebook, and since then many people have tried to get in touch with me. Like, a lot of people. From...
Today marks the beginning of health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act’s new insurance exchanges, for which two million Americans have signed up. Now that the individual mandate is officially here, let me begin with an admission: Obamacare is awful. That is the...
The vague cultural concept doesn't translate easily into English, but it has helped Denmark become the 'happiest country on Earth' despite long, dark winters. Denmark is the happiest country on Earth, according to the United Nations, which may seem odd for a small, subarctic...
The news: Norway is well on its way to digitizing every book in its National Library and making them all free to access for any Norwegian citizen. That means hundreds of thousands of books will be available to anyone accessing the collection online with a Norwegian IP...
And the grand total is... A mere $62.6 billion dollars! According to new Department of Education data, that's how much tuition public colleges collected from undergraduates in 2012 across the entire United States. And I'm not being facetious with the word mere, either. The...
Things are getting better and better and worse and worse faster and faster simultaneously.” – Tom Atlee Was the year 2013 a cause for hope or a cause for despair? Were the positive developments signs that the world is turning the corner? Or were they delusionary exceptions...
Ruth Potts is the co-author, with Andrew Simms, of a pamphlet called The New Materialism, founder of Bread, Print and Roses, and organiser of the recent 'Festival of Making'. She describes her work as "inviting people to fall in love with stuff in a good way".  We sat down...
Did you know that Seoul, South Korea is one of the world’s key sites for post-growth economic re-development? No? Neither did I, until I saw for myself.   I was pleased to be invited to give the keynote address at a conference titled “Reshaping the Way We Live,” put on...
In Costa Rica, publicly-owned banks have been available for so long and work so well that people take for granted that any country that knows how to run an economy has a public banking option. Costa Ricans are amazed to hear there is only one public depository bank in the...
It's a sign of a really good essay when bits of it linger with you for days after you've read it and it keeps popping up in your mind. Naomi Klein's "Why Science is Telling All of Us to Revolt and Change Our Lives Before We Destroy the Planet" is one of those. Her theme?...
We are in trouble, folks. If the record high temperatures, extreme droughts, and historic wildfires weren’t enough to convince us of the need to change our ways, Hurricane Sandy sure was. Damages from the recent super storm are estimated to be upwards of
To this day, a philosophical debate rages on as to the true nature of humanity. Is humanity at its core good or evil? Does the human species amount to no more than a parasite on the planet as Agent Smith says in The Matrix, “a cancer”, intent on devouring every last...
Earlier this month, I had the honour of being interviewed by Rob Hopkins, the founder of the