Sharing has taken root and the #SharingSpring is in bloom. Around the world, people who understand the transformational power of the sharing movement are gathering together to collaborate, participate, rethink, swap, celebrate and create. Inspired by the Occupy movement, Arab Spring and M15, the #SharingSpring is about creating solutions to pressing issues in our communities right now.

We know that if people are to use resources mindfully, to manage them well, and to both demand and correctly use appropriate end of life systems, then we need to design systems that they are easy and convenient to use.

There are two ‘muscles’ that can be flexed in relation to resource and waste management – the Circular Economy muscle, and the Access Economy muscle. A lot of muscle-building effort has gone into the former, and the latter is a muscle we’ve only just discovered we can build.

[Editor's Note: we are passing along this email notice from the Ohio Employee Ownership Conferece.  The conference will take place on April 24th, with pre-conference events on April 23rd.]

A Wealth of Opportunity: Employee Ownership Fuels Growth

We have a few updates for you:

American consumers benefit to the tune of $8.5 billion due to credit unions’ presence in the marketplace.

And the nation’s 98 million credit union members received $6.1 billion in benefits during the year ended Sept. 30, 2013, in the form of lower loan rates, higher dividends, and fewer and lower fees.

[I]f we accept that difference in human communities is good and normal and expected, then we have got to learn how to be at ease with the range of human experience, bodies, cultures, subcultures, and values. If we want to be at ease with the complex reality of human difference, then we have got to learn how to be good to each other when we bump up against it – which we will, regularly, unless we want a conformist monoculture in which everyone behaves, thinks, and feels the same way.

The emerging constellation of alternative economic activities celebrated on goes by many names—shared, gift, solidarity, social, cooperative, rooted, generative, and new economy are just a few—but they share many core values and aspirations in common.

At six-foot-six he was a towering breath of fresh air for the thousands of Co-operative Group employees who pined for change.

And, for a while, co-op democrats inside and outside the Group were in awe of a fresh change in management from Euan Sutherland; a renewed business focus.

But as will undoubtedly become clear in the Kelly Report next month, there is and always has been a deep divide between the elected board members at the Group and the management they appoint – a phenomenon not just exclusive to this co-operative.

Southern pews and pulpits weren’t the only source of people power during the long civil rights movement. So, too, were cooperative economic enterprises. These worker or consumer-owned alternatives to U.S. capitalism helped train and produce civil rights leaders from A. Philip Randolph to Ella Baker and Fannie Lou Hamer to sitting congressman John Lewis (D-Ga.).

Many design agencies and arts organisations use a constant churn of skilled and productive long-term interns, sometimes comprising a third or more of the workforce, with only the more senior employees earning what would have been considered a decent income twenty years ago.


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