The City And The Commons

Responding to Tim Hollo’s article Towards Ecological Democracy, Natalie Osborne explores the implications of these ideas for cities, arguing that urban commoning demands what will be, for many of us, a radical reimagining of land, boundaries, and notions of property and ownership that directly challenge capitalist modes of relations.

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The Commons: What, Why And How?

The commons is one of the key ideas that we can make use of in our efforts at developing a postcapitalist politics. 

In his keynote address at the Green Institute’s Conference, Everything is Connected, in October 2017, Dr Stephen Healy, discusses the what, why and how of commoning.

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Why A Universal Basic Income Can Address Historic, Gender And Material Inequities

Reclaiming social value, not just material pricing

Arguments for a Universal Basic Income in Australia face particular local cultural, economic and social pitfalls. Unlike many other western style democracies, the Australian welfare system of payments is noncontributory
(i.e. paid out of general tax revenue), and we have no tradition of public equity entitlements.

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The Trouble With Consensus Is … We Don’t Do It Enough

Co-founder of the Victorian Greens Facilitators Network, Jim Buckell, responds to Sarah Maddison

In her interview with Clare Ozich in Green Agenda, Sarah Maddison puts consensus decision making under the spotlight. In doing so, she perpetuates some common myths: it’s too slow; makes for bad decisions; marginalises dissent. Then she advances a new one (to me anyway): it can apparently be impossibly difficult to review or overturn an old consensus decision.

I’m certain these pitfalls are not systemic. They don’t arise because consensus is a flawed concept. These myths take hold because so few of us see consensus practised well, including Sarah Maddison I suspect. Groups take all manner of shortcuts or press to a vote because of time constraints. Continue reading →

Forests Not Woodlots

This article was written in response to Rosemary Beaumont’s article: It is Everyone’s Forest

Rosemary Beaumont’s article is timely. The Great Southern Forest is part of a larger picture which will see the fate of over 6 million hectares of Australia’s most loved native forests decided between now and 2021. Either they will be handed to the logging industry for another 20 years, effectively to become woodlots, or the federal government will resume environmental oversight and give the forests a chance. Continue reading →

Towards a four-day work week

We started the company, two of us in a room, working five eight-hour days, and late if we had to: the same hours we were used to at the advertising agency we’d just left, scrounging for work, taking what we could get.

Little by little we got better at what we did, and after two or three years we’d improved our skills and our processes, grown to five people, and we were in a position to do something with that productivity. So we started taking Fridays off. Continue reading →

The End of Coal: Transition

The Green Institute has published a collated paper on The End of Coal. The essays in the paper argue that not only that change is coming, but also that, if we embrace and accelerate that change, it brings with it tremendous opportunities to build a better, fairer democracy, economy and society.

In our second piece publishing extracts from the paper, Green Agenda is pleased to publish two different perspectives on the transition from coal for  communities and workers and the opportunities provided for economic renewal.

The first essay is from Amanda Cahill reflecting on her experiences working with communities facing the end of coal. The second is from Drew Hutton arguing for a different democracy to accompany a new economy.
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The End of Coal: Introduction

The Green Institute has published a collated paper on The End of Coal, asking the questions:  How should governments respond to coal’s rapid and terminal decline? Will governments and corporations act to protect people and the planet, or will they try to extract the last drops of profit from coal before it is left it behind?

The essays in the paper argue that not only that change is coming, but also that, if we embrace and accelerate that change, it brings with it tremendous opportunities to build a better, fairer democracy, economy and society.

Green Agenda is pleased to publish a selection of the essays collated in The End of Coal, starting with the Introduction by Green Institute Director, Tim Hollo.
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