In this issue of Open Space, we take a look at the commons, often forgotten as one of the four major sectors of the economy (with the state, the market, and the household). The idea of the commons is more than just shared spaces - it is an alternative way of life that promotes connectivity, sustainability, and equality over consumption and development. We suggest that the reclamation of the commons is a key element in nurturing an economy of solidarity and reconciliation and restoring right relationships.
This issue of OPEN SPACE marks the tenth anniversary of the Jesuit Forum and pays tribute to Bill Ryan sj, who died in the fall.
“In whose hands does all this power lie? It is extremely risky for only a small part of humanity to have it.” Pope Francis’ words set the tone for this issue of Open Space which explores global money power and asks the question, who makes the rules?
This issue features a reflection on the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals, adopted last year by all 193 member states. It is a hopeful document, certainly, but there are numerous challenges and limitations. Last August's inspiring World Social Forum, held in Montreal, is also covered.
This issue of Open Space offers a reflection on Pope Francis’ ground-breaking encyclical, Laudato Si’, alongside Change the Story, Change the Future, the recent book by David Korten (author of When Corporations Rule the World).
This issue of Open Space offers some reflection on the Idle No More movement which came as a forceful sign of the times as well as a sign of hope.
Every so often, a new book raises a major issue that none of us can afford to ignore. The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies deserves that kind of signs of the times attention. This issue of Open Space considers the ideas in the book through the lens of issues raised at recent meetings of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, and economic analyses published in The Economist. Some questions are also raised in line with the thought of Pope Francis about the technology-driven transformations that are now upon us.
In this edition, Bill Ryan sj brings you thoughts on two books on power. Moises Naim's book, The End of Power, argues that the new microplayers can widen democracy, but they can also cause political chaos. Gar Alperovitz recognizes this dilemma and tries to find an answer to it in his What Then Must We Do? To welcome the spring, Sheila Watt-Cloutier speaks on The Right To Be Cold!
We all hear about the Earth-wide ecological crisis, but the news often falls on dull ears. The response is often contentious, contradictory, sceptical or passive. In this edition of Open Space, we explore these issues and look for the signs of hope. We also bring some voices of small-holder farmers from Mali and Indonesia to tell us about land grabbing which destroys both the environment and rural communities.
The gap between the rich and the poor - and especially between the very rich and most of us - has grown rapidly in recent years (please see our Open Space, The Rich and the Rest, March/April 2011). And it just keeps growing. Read this Open Space for more, plus inspiration from women in the Global South who are working together for their needs and creating forests as well.