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Rafael Lopez: Can community resilience transform the current economic model?


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Presentation at the STEPS Conference 2010 - Pathways to Sustainability: Agendas for a new politics of environment, development and social justice

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Rafael Lopez: Can community resilience transform the current economic model?

  1. 1. Can community resilience transform the current economic model?<br />Rafael Lopez<br />nef (the new economics foundation)<br />
  2. 2. About nef<br />An independent think-and-do-tank founded in 1986<br />Inspired by 3 principles<br /><ul><li> Sustainable development
  3. 3. Social justice
  4. 4. People’s wellbeing</li></ul>‘We aim to improve quality of life by promoting innovative solutions that challenge mainstream thinking on economic, environmental and social issues. We work in partnership and put people and the planet first.’<br />
  5. 5. Transformation? <br />Environmental sustainability, social justice & Well-being? <br />Outcome <br />Community Resilience <br />
  6. 6. Systemic Failure<br /><ul><li>The current economic model is extremely focused on economic growth and its narrowness is failing to address:
  7. 7. Climate change;
  8. 8. Financial crisis;
  9. 9. Peak oil; and
  10. 10. Rising inequality
  11. 11. It requires new holistic and more qualitative approaches to understand the multifaceted character of sustainable development.
  12. 12. Community resilience arises as a concept to understand the ability of social-ecological systems to absorb and adapt to uncertainty and changes.</li></li></ul><li>Defining Community Resilience<br />Community resilience refers to:<br /> the existence, development, and use of community resources by community members to absorb external shocks so as to retain essential structures, processes and feedbacks<br />Members of resilient communities intentionally develop personal and collective capacity to:<br /><ul><li> engage resources to respond to change in order to sustain the community, and
  13. 13. develop new adaptive capacities for the communities’ future.</li></li></ul><li>Main Contributions <br /><ul><li>Brings together economic, social and ecological systems to the analysis
  14. 14. It is a context-based concept
  15. 15. Draws on active citizenship
  16. 16. Support the community to deliver adaptation to shocks through self-organisation, learning and innovation </li></li></ul><li>Characteristic not outcome<br /><ul><li>The concept of resilience mostly refers to adaptation and survival
  17. 17. The combination of climate change, financial crisis, decline in oil production, and social dislocation requires transformation.
  18. 18. Community resilience is a desirable quality that can support systemic transformation but cannot be considered transformation itself. </li></li></ul><li>Resilience in a local economic system<br />