Puerto Rico — Spirited Community Response

March 26, 2018

Two weeks ago, Susan Witt, Executive Director of the Schumacher Center, visited San Juan, the capital of Puerto Rico, where she saw two responses to the devastation after Hurricane Maria— both efforts are attempting to appropriately develop remaining land, including resettling those in the most fragile ecological areas.

Community Land Trusts | Philmont, NY | January 27th

January 22, 2018

Philmont is a village in Northwestern Columbia County, NY with a population hovering around 1,500, and with an active citizenry for its size. Philmont Beautification, Inc. captures that engagement and channels it to benefit the small stores and residents of the area. 60 percent of the homes in Philmont are rentals. Philmont Beautification recognizes that … Continued

Let Us Be Reckless of Our Words

December 23, 2017

Our thanks to the many friends of the Schumacher Center for a New Economics for their generous support in 2017. To borrow an image from American poet, Conrad Aiken:  Let us all be prodigal of our best wishes for the Earth and each other in 2018. Videos of the 37th Annual E. F. Schumacher Lectures … Continued

The “Sweetness of the Marketplace”

December 12, 2017

In his book Debt: The First 5,000 Years, anthropologist David Graeber challenges the myth that trade emerged first as barter and that money then evolved as a solution to the inconvenience of barter in a way that usually goes something like this: “One can imagine an old-style farmer bartering with the blacksmith, the tailor, the grocer, … Continued

How Indigenous Land-Use Practices Relate to Community Land Trusts & The Commons

November 3, 2017

In a recent article in Shareable, The Schumacher Center’s Development and Communications Director, Aaron Fernando, writes about similarities between indigenous land stewardship, the community land trust model, and the commons. Read his article below. How Indigenous Land-Use Practices Inform the Current Sharing Economy by Aaron Fernando The concept of ownership is a social contract that allows … Continued

Winona LaDuke on Language, the Living World, and the Commons

October 20, 2017

You may have noticed that the theme of the upcoming 37th Annual E. F. Schumacher Lectures on November 4th is “Choosing the Path that is Green“. This is a reference to a prophecy of the Anishinaabeg peoples, of whom Winona LaDuke—this year’s keynote speaker— is a member. Winona LaDuke is an activist, community economist, and author. … Continued

Culture & Knowledge: Crucial for a Sustainable Future

October 19, 2017

At the 37th Annual E. F. Schumacher Lectures four featured panelists will assemble after Winona LaDuke’s keynote to discuss a variety of topics ranging from land reform, stewarding the commons, solidarity between grassroots movements, to the question of how to transition toward local, living economies. The theme of the event is “Choosing the Path that is Green“. In their own way, each … Continued

Re-Imagining Politics through the Lens of the Commons 

October 4, 2017

In his September article for 21st Century Global Dynamics, Schumacher Center’s Director of Reinventing the Commons, David Bollier, makes the case for self-organized, bottom up, responses to current economic/social/cultural conditions—neither market alone nor government funded/directed. Re-Imagining Politics through the Lens of the Commons by David Bollier The rise of so many right-wing nationalist movements around … Continued

How Small Became Beautiful

August 16, 2017

Today is the 106th anniversary of Ernest Friedrich Schumacher’s birth.  To honor the occasion we have included below excerpts from his classic, and still profoundly relevant, 1966 essay “Buddhist Economics.”  The full text and its multiple translations may be read at the Schumacher Center’s website. In 1973 “Buddhist Economics” was collected with other essays by E. … Continued

Making Our Own Gumbo Soup

August 11, 2017

“To Find Alternatives to Capitalism, Think Small” In her defense of neoliberal policies, British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher famously thundered: “There is no alternative!” It is time for a rejoinder: “There are plenty of alternatives!” David Bollier, director of the Reinventing the Commons Program at the Schumacher Center, argues in his new article for The Nation … Continued