Wirtschaft Soziales Commons Landingpage englisch

Reinventing Law for the Commons


This Strategy Memorandum is a first attempt to survey the more significant realms of commons-based legal innovation occurring today.  Besides providing a rough inventory of more than sixty projects and theaters of legal innovation, David Bollier proposes that these disparate initiatives be conceptualized as a new strategic framing, “Law for the Commons.”

The Potato Park of Peru

Up to 4.000 potato varieties are growing in Peru in a high-altitude Sacred Valley of the Incas. Six Quechua communities have been able to maintain the integrity of their biocultural traditions and fragile ecosystem.

By David Bollier

Dossier: Patterns of Commoning

The book Patterns of Commoning is a special series of essays which explores the inner dynamics of commoning - its ethics, social practices and worldview. In our dossier you can find a selection of nine texts to stimulate your appetite for more.

Deep Dive Reports

Photo: Benjamin Hollis. Creative Commons License LogoThis image is licensed under Creative Commons License.

State Power and Commoning - Transcending a Problematic Relationship


The report summarizes the outcome of a workshop of the Commons Strategies Group in cooperation with the Heinrich Böll Foundation with a diverse group of twenty commons-oriented activists, academics, policy experts and project leaders for three days in Lehnin, Germany, outside of Berlin, from February 28 to March 1, 2016.

A New Alignment of Movements?


This report reflects intensive forms of exploratory dialogue and cooperation among social movements. The movements are especially dedicated to cooperatives, a Degrowth economy, Social and Solidarity Economy, peer production, Transition Towns, ecological/sustainability, and the commons.

Toward an Open Co-Operativism


To explore the possibilities of an Open Co-operativism, the Commons Strategies Group convened a workshop of a dozen notable activists, policy experts, academics and project leaders. This report summarizes the main results of the workshop.

Trade Agreements and the Supply of Public Goods


This is the report of a Berlin workshop that was designed to serve as a space for experts with backgrounds in international trade, law, the environment and public health to  review the draft  of a WTO Agreement for the Supply of Global Public Goods as proposed by KEI and provide technical and strategic advice on how to move forward.


Economics and the Common(s)

The prevailing dogma of market-fundamentalism has increasingly been called into question as the predatory dynamics of the market economy became clear and as its threats to the biosphere have become more acute. Our conference has opened up new vistas in politics, economics and culture by exploring the commons as an alternative worldview and provisioning system.

International Commons Conference 2010

The multidisciplinary international conference took place in November 2010 and brought together about 150 leading figures in commons-based studies and activism. The participants shared their understandings of the commons, explored the range of commons-based policy and forged a new network of commoners. Here you find texts and interviews documenting the event.


Value in the Commons Economy: Developments in Open and Contributory Value Accounting


Michel Bauwens and Vasilis Niaros of the P2P Foundation explore how new value regimes - such as for example open and contributory value accounting practices - can represent a shift towards post-capitalist practices. What if the commons represent a new economy that is being born within the old? We invite you to learn more about this powerful societal shift documented in this report.

Patterns of Commoning

More than sixty frontline activists, academics and project leaders from twenty countries explain how commoning is empowering people to challenge the deep pathologies of contemporary capitalism and invent powerful, participatory alternatives. A special series of essays explores the inner dynamics of commoning - its ethics, social practices and worldview - to explain why the building of new worlds starts from within.

Economics and the Common(s): Conference Report


This report summarizes the general content of each keynote presentation and conference stream of the conference "Economics and the Common(s): From Seed Form to Core Paradigm", with verbatim excerpts of the more interesting aspects of the proceedings.

The Commons - Prosperity by Sharing

This report attempts to explore the potential of the commons if they are used wisely and sustainably. It delves into the reasons why so many commons are threatened and examines the rules that can help protect the commons from ruin. This article provides also a french version of the report.
All publications on Commons

What are Commons?


Strengthen the Commons – Now!

Awareness of the commons requires a fundamental shift in thinking about the foundations of society. It means using, sharing, and multiplying our common wealth in a free and self-determined way. Our society needs a great debate and a worldwide movement for the commons. Now!

Articles: The Wealth of Commons

These articles were first published in "The Wealth of Commons. A World Beyond Market & State", ed. by David Bollier and Silke Helfrich. For the German edition click here, for further articles and information on the English edition click here.

Hope from the Margins

In the south of Mexico people are regenerating the society from the bottom up. It is a new kind of revolution without leaders or vanguards, which goes beyond development and globalization. It is about displacing the economy from the center of social life, reclaiming a communal way of being, encouraging radical pluralism, and advancing towards real democracy. By Gustavo Esteva

The Economy of Wastefulness: The Biology of the Commons

There is an all-enclosing commons-economy which has been successful for billions of years: The biosphere is neither efficient nor does it know property. Nature embodies the commons paradigm par excellence and can therefore provide us with a powerful methodology of the commons as a natural and social ecology.

By Andreas Weber

Share or Die – A Challenge for Our Times

In the past, we tended to see cities as dirty, unnatural, and isolating places; today, citizens and urban planners alike are starting to see their potential for generating widespread well-being at low financial and environmental cost. People want the streets to make room for pedestrians and bicyclists, and for civic engagement and for sharing.  By Neal Gorenflo

Transition Towns: Initiatives of Transformation

Today there are more than 500 “official” Transition Town initiatives in more than 38 countries, and several thousand more are in the process of formation in many cities, towns and regions across the world. But what is it that makes the Transition model so attractive for so many extremely different people and cultures? By Gerd Wessling

The Global Land Grab: The New Enclosures

Clearly possession is no more sufficient today than it was for the English villagers of the 17th and 18th centuries of enclosure. Only legal recognition of commons as the communal property of communities, author Liz Alden Wily finds, is sufficient to afford real protection. By Liz Alden Wily


An epoch in modern history has ended. The growth imperative of market capitalism is evidently endangering the ecosystem. Confidence in governments as reliable steward of people's interests has been shaken. Therefore, a new path forward is coming into focus: The commons! The commons is about reclaiming, sharing and self-governing resources that belong to everyone. As a form of governance it is defending traditional or building new social and institutional systems for managing our resources – water and land, knowledge and seeds, genes and the atmosphere – based on the principles of equity and sustainability. The commons is a practical means for re-inventing society in ways that markets and governments are unable or unwilling to entertain. Commons does not mean resources alone are centre stage, of higher importance are the relationships among us, the commoners, our ways of commoning!