Sheffield and Balsall Heath: the real march of the makers

Posted 2 CommentsPosted in Devolution, Economy, Employee ownership, Employment, Import substitution, Local economies, Localisation, Manufacturing, People power, Transition, Urban

The observations of Julian Dobson (Living With Rats blogspot @juliandobson), strike a welcome and hopeful chord after reading the dismal question: “Will Chancellor Osborne cripple the ‘makers’?” A search revealed JD’s substantial localist credentials – as director of Urban Pollinators, which helps to make sense of regeneration and the editorial director of New Start, the national magazine for regeneration practitioners. […]

Localism: a rescue plan for British democracy

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Books and articles, Democracy, Devolution, Economics, Education, Employment, Government, Health, Local economies, Local government, Localisation, Localism, People power, Planning, Politics, Regional economies, Tax, Transition

A notable omission from Localise West Midlands’ extensive range of articles about, or with references to localism, is a review of a book by Simon Jenkins: Big Bang Localism: a rescue plan for British democracy. In this book he attributes the decline in British voter interest and participation to the over-centralisation of power in Whitehall, ‘one of the most centralised governments in […]

Community energy solutions: Plymouth

Posted Posted in City council, Democracy, Devolution, Economy, Education, Employment, Energy, Environment, Finance, Local economies, Local government, Localisation, Low carbon, Microfinance, Planning, Politics, Poverty, Renewable energy, Transition

In 2012 Plymouth’s co-operative city council established a Low Carbon City Team, which helped to identify the city’s potential for community energy solutions and forge partnerships. The council funded pre-development, initial community engagement and business plan development. In 2013 it joined forces with local residents to form Plymouth Energy Community (PEC) which then set up a second Industrial & Provident […]

America: six big shifts towards an economy that distributes economic benefits widely and minimizes damage to the environment

Posted Posted in Co-operatives, Democracy, Devolution, Economics, Economy, Employee ownership, Employment, Environment, Food, Health, Housing, Local economies, Low carbon, Planning, Politics, Regional economies, Transition, Transport

. Sarah van Gelder (right) is co-founder and executive editor of YES! Magazine which feature powerful ideas and practical actions towards a more just and sustainable world. She has co-founded a cohousing community, organized tenants and built a produce cooperative, providing local, sustainably grown whole foods, at affordable prices, to residents who want local, sustainable food sourced within walking distance […]

Community energy: co-operative, citizen-centred, decentralised

Posted Posted in Co-operatives, Democracy, Devolution, Employee ownership, Employment, Energy, Environment, Finance, Local economies, Localisation, Low carbon, Mutuals, Planning, Renewable energy, Social Enterprise, Transition

. Although a couple of weeks ago the government agreed to ban all fracking in protected areas, they are now reported as saying this may ‘unduly constrain the industry’ and fracking will be allowed to take place under National Parks and other protected areas if the wells start outside their boundaries. The passing of the government’s bill was welcomed by […]

A lesson for Britain: Brazil promotes food security and local food procurement, strengthening family farming

Posted Posted in Books and articles, Economy, Employment, Energy, Environment, Food, Globalisation, Import substitution, Local economies, Low carbon, Planning, Poverty, Procurement, Regional economies, Trade, Transition

Vested interests replacing the now defunct Flying Matters, a lobby group funded by the aviation industry, vigorously defend the profitable import of food from countries with malnourished people. A better way forward, socially, economically and environmentally is offered by the Director General of the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization, Jose Graziano da Silva (Extraordinary Minister for Food Security), one of […]

Globalisation – the open trading system – is fragmenting

Posted Posted in Economics, Economy, Employment, Environment, Export-led growth, Finance, Globalisation, Green Deal, Green New Deal, Import substitution, Local economies, Localisation, Low carbon, Planning, Politics, Poverty, Procurement, Regional economies, Renewable energy, Sustainability, Trade, Transition

Philip Stephens, an associate editor, in the Financial Times: “Globalisation – the open trading system – is fragmenting; it needs an enforcer – a hegemon, a concert of powers or global governance arrangements”. Evidence: the collapse of the Doha, the demise of global free-trade agreements, and the emergence of regional coalitions and deals. The emerging economies are building south-south relationships […]

Seeking economic activists in the West Mids!

Posted Posted in Economics, Economy, Employment

 “It’s really the right time for your organisation now”  “The Localise Prosperity site and resources are fantastic – I can’t tell you how brilliant it was for someone in a role like mine to find the actions for communities.”  “What an amazing document (the evidence review LWM did). Such an important job and I’m going to return to it…” “Your […]

Has Secretary of State (Elizabeth Truss) visited the LWM site?

Posted Posted in Books and articles, City council, Economy, Employment, Energy, Food, Government, Import substitution, Local economies, Local government, Planning, Procurement, Transition

A Lancashire farmer sends news of a ministerial statement made by the new Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Elizabeth Truss.  On 21st July she launched “A Plan for Public Procurement of Food and Catering Services”, which includes an emphasis on Government procurement opening up the public sector market to small and local businesses: “It will allow […]

Relocalisation: an under reported issue in the French elections

Posted Posted in Books and articles, Economics, Economy, Employment, Environment, EU, Export-led growth, Finance, Globalisation, Import substitution, Local economies, Localisation, Planning, Procurement, Regional economies, Tax, Trade, Transition

  In the French election, left wing socialist Jean-Luc Melenchon has stressed the need to relocalise Europe’s economy and to do so by limiting imports. This has brought Melenchon increased votes in a country where 70% of the population favour some form of protection for domestic production from cheaper, lower waged competitors. This French election trend prompts a call for […]