What might the world look like if governments
and public policy actively helped
people create and maintain their own commons?
A major international conference
hopes to find some preliminary answers at
an historic gathering in Berlin, Germany,
from October 31 to November 2, 2010.
Convened by the Heinrich Boell Foundation
and the newly formed Commons Strategy
Group, the event, “Building a Commons-
Based Policy Platform,” will bring together
more than 150 activists, academics and
project leaders from 35 countries. Participants
will explore new strategies for developing
the emerging ‘commons sector’ and
provide a space for ‘commoners’ to discover
how they might collaborate.
At the moment, the global movement of
commoners is eclectic and growing but
fragmented. There are a number of flourishing
trans-national commons movements,
such as free software, Wikipedia
and various pools of Creative Commonslicensed
content, such as open access scholarly
journals and amateur video sites.
This article was originally published in the Fall | Winter 2010 issue of Kosmos Journal. The full text can be downloaded as a PDF here.
I am an independent policy strategist, journalist, activist and consultant with an evolving public-interest portfolio. My work tends to focus on a few key concerns: reclaiming the commons, understanding how digital technologies are changing democratic culture, fighting the excesses of intellectual property law, fortifying consumer rights and promoting citizen action.