1 March 2012

Learning from Latin America

The most common plaint that we hear through the media is that there is no model for how our future might look now that the capitalist dream has burst. This may be because we are speaking the wrong language, because in America south of the Rio Grande a whole range of different economies have been bursting into life in the past two decades. Although what we hear is usually a middle-class whinge about life in Venezuela there is in reality a vibrancy of difference and diversity.

To learn more and to share insights north and south I have been organising a conference exchange together with a colleague at Liverpool University, which you can find out more about at the dedicated blog. The idea is to overcome the language barrier and to bring insights from the Latin American economic model to Europe. The UK leg of the conference will take place next month in Liverpool. There are a few places available for those with experiences to share and a desire to learn and participate in building a shared future that relies on solidarity and co-operation.

A key issue for the future prosperity of both Global North and South is the challenge of reconciling a right to human development with the need to avoid dangerous climate change and the unsustainable depletion of resources. Key to this is the development of resilient and sustainable livelihoods and economic opportunities in economies in which communities and ecosystems can thrive. These seminars will facilitate a North/South discussion about how to develop sustainable livelihood options through a consideration of the experiences of low carbon community action in the Global North, and conceptions of the ‘solidarity economy’ and of low carbon development in Latin America.

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