Common Good





how can we create an Economy for the Common Good ? - the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

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  • "in the last years serious structural problems in the global capitalism game became impossible - for even its winners - to ignore"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "capitalism, as it's currently practiced, is running into fundamental structural problems - the question is: "what can replace it" ?!!!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "in the US, "B Lab" has worked to develop "benefit corporations" - companies that legally commit themselves to honor moral values"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "in Europe, "Economy for the Common Good" - ECG - is taking a similar tack"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the program seeks to address a capitalist system, that creates a number of serious problems:"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "unemployment, inequality, poverty, exclusion, hunger, environmental degradation, and climate change"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the solution is an economic system, that places human beings and all living entities !"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "at the center of economic activity !!!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "to realize this goal, the ECG proposes an economic system, that applies the standards for human relationships"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "as well as constitutional values to the economy !"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "in other words, this is an economy, that rewards economic stakeholders for behaving and organizing themselves"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "in a humane, cooperative, ecological, and democratic way !!!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "or an economy that replaces the "selfish values" of predatory capitalism"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "with the relationship values and constitutional values, that underlie most moral systems !"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "these boil down to five fundamental values: human dignity, cooperation, solidarity !!!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "ecological sustainability, social justice, democratic co-determination, and transparency !!!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "this is the basis of the "Economy for the Common Good" model"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "a world-changing vision - there are 20 "utopian" principles:"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "income caps, significant limitations on private wealth, and a move to nationalize natural resources !"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "it has created the "Common Good Balance Sheet""

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "a scorecard, that measures companies based on their preservation of those five fundamental values"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "initially, companies joining with ECG develop an internal balance sheet, which they can use to evaluate their sustainability weaknesses"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "later, they can have peer companies or ECG evaluate their balance sheet, after which they can make it public"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "Johannes Gutmann is the founder and managing director of "Sonnentor" ( "Sun-Door" ), one of the first companies to join ECG, and one of the first to submit to its external auditing process"

 

 

 

 

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  • "an organic tea producer - the company was already committed to many of ECG's principles:"

 

 

 

 

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  • ""when they introduced me to this idea," Gutmann recounts, "I told them, that's the way we've been working right from the beginning !""

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "however, Gutmann discovered an unexpected benefit: the increased transparency required by the balance sheet was useful when dealing with other shareholders"

 

 

 

 

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  • "we made all the things very transparent to our partners, to our employees, to our farmers - to everybody"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "we were able to show them, what we are really doing !"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "branding mechanism: companies that submit to an external accounting are able to publish their ratings on their products, informing consumers of their sustainability commitment"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "companies that conduct an internal audit get one sustainability point - or "seedling""

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "companies that conduct a peer review get two seedlings, while companies that submit to an ECG audit get three"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "but consumer awareness is only part of the plan"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "governments should develop a system of economic benefits, that promote sustainability !"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "companies with a large number of seedlings should qualify for tax breaks, and low-interest loans"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "and should be given preference when it comes to public purchasing, and government contracts"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the ECG has already garnered a network of 1,463 partner businesses"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "some local governments have indicated interest in partnering with the group"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the state of Salzburg - in Austria - has officially adopted the idea of the common good economy"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the new coalition government has established in their contract that they support the "Common Good""

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the ECG is still on the fringes, but it has already demonstrated an ability"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "to draw together a partnership of companies, consumers, and communities !"

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Economy for the Common Good - NOW: LINK ¤ N O W

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  • "Diego Isabel La Moneda - coordinator of international strategy at the "Economy for the Common Good" - about the need for a shift in focus:"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "away from striving to increase economic profits"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "towards increasing the common good ! - and wellbeing of the entire population !!!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the pursuit of money and economic profit characterized our society - and our lives"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "companies struggled to improve their financial balance sheets, governments focused their efforts on increasing Gross Domestic Product (GDP)"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the "Economy for the Common Good" is inspired by the concept that it is a fallacy, that acquiring wealth will help us further"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the ECG proposes simple changes in the main aim of our society"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "an alternative economic system such as one for the common good"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "can contribute to maximise collective wellbeing !"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "common good can become a tool in measuring the social responsibility of companies and public institutions"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "for a positive contribution to common good and collaboration !!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "in order to accomplish this goal, the ECG suggests a change in methodology - shifting from competition"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "to cooperation !!!!!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the concept was born after the publication of Christian Felber´s book "the Economy for the Common Good" in 2010"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "( Austrian-born Felber is writer, economist, and thinker - focused on the relation between society and economy )"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "since then, an international social movement has flourished, and spread throughout the world based on the inspiring ideas"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "today, there are active supporters in 30 countries - and more than 1600 companies have endorsed the idea"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "over 100 local groups meet regularly on the local level"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "moreover, in 2013 the first municipalities in Italy, Austria and Spain began the process of becoming "Common Good Cities""

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "creating tools for change: the holistic change proposed by the "Economy for the Common Good" is being developed in three areas:"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "people, companies/organizations, and governments !"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "for this reason, several tools are being developed in a cooperative way in order to facilitate these changes at different levels"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the first tool developed was the "Common Good Matrix""

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "which aims at helping companies and organizations to shift towards a focus on the "Common Good""

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "this Matrix consists of 17 indicators, and these indicators are the result of crossing the five main values of the “Economy for the Common Good" with the stakeholders of the organizations:"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "human dignity, solidarity, ecological sustainability, social justice, and transparency/democracy !!!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "these include: suppliers, investors, staff, owners, clients, and the social environment"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the result of applying the Matrix and assessing the indicators can be seen as an improvement plan for the business, and is expressed in a scheme of points between 0 and 1000"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the assessment is drawn up in the "Balance of the Common Good""

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "a public document that is communicated to all the stakeholders - and to the public"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "enabling participation: as the "Economy for the Common Good" movement is a bottom up organization"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "new tools are being developed in a cooperative, and democratic fashion !!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "an example of this is the adaptation of the Matrix for municipalities"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "and the "Common Good Index" which is designed and implemented by each one of the communities across the world choosing to participate"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "citizens join and ask themselves the question: what does the common good and wellbeing mean for us ?!!!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "and from that point, they start to define common good and wellbeing"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "both in a general way !!! - and in a specific one for each main field of their lives !"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "( environment, health, education, relationships, spirituality, professional development, … )"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "one main challenge for the "Economy for the Common Good", and for other organizations that are working towards a better world"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "is to cooperate and work together !!!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "we must put aside our egos - and start to collaborate, in order to achieve our common goals !!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the "Economy for the Common Good" has the potential to contribute to changing the focus of the political, economic and social systems"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "from maximising profits - to maximising the common good !!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "as well as to shift from a competitive society - to a cooperative one !!!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the rest of the tools - actions and methodologies - are to start to work together in the different fields where each organization is specialised"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "networks such as "Global Ecovillage Network", "Transition Towns" and more recently "NOW" are already aiming to walk this collaborative path"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "it is a collaborative and cooperative approach !!!"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "that "Economy for the Common Good" hopes to support, promote, and engage with"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the more organizations that embrace this alternative"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the faster we will be able to build a better and more egalitarian world ! - for everybody !!!!!!!"

 

 

 

 

 



 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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the Economy of the Common Good
: LINK ¤ COMMON GOOD

 

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