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Ethics, Design, Care

This short talk is about an economy with caring for life as its centre, rather than extraction and production. I compare earth care to modern medical care, and suggest that looking is not the same as caring. I ask what design can learn from Care Ethics – and find inspiration [continue …]

2023-03-13T09:13:02+00:00March 3rd, 2023|biodiversity, care, development, most read, nature-connection, urban-rural|

Tools for Changemakers: Conversation with David Bollier

Mutual aid. Local money. Collaborative care. Alternative futures are being created around the world -. but not, for the most part, in plain sight. David Bollier’s new book – Commoner’s Catalog for Changemaking: Tools for the Transitions Ahead – brings dozens of social projects like these to [continue …]

2023-03-06T09:54:56+00:00March 19th, 2022|care, civic ecology, commoning, green finance, most read|

Microbes and Social Equity – conversation with Dr Sue Ishaq

Ninety nine percent of life, it turns out, is invisible - so how do we design for that? My guest in this conversation is microbiome researcher Dr. Suzanne Ishaq, founder of the Microbes and Social Equity working group

2022-10-08T14:49:54+00:00February 15th, 2022|knowing, most read, nature-connection|

Beyond Calculation: AI and Sustainability

(Keynote talk in China): Even before AI came along, “what’s good for humans” helped shape an economy that extracts vitality, as well as resources, from the planet’s living systems. This cultural disconnection – between the living world, and the economic one – explains why we either don’t think about rivers, soils, and biodiversity at all – or we treat them as natural ‘resources’ whose only purpose is to feed “the economy.”

2022-10-07T11:41:03+00:00December 9th, 2021|care, development, most read|

john chris jones and ‘designing designing’

Its publisher, Bloomsbury, describes designing designing as “one of the most extraordinary books on design ever written”. It’s therefore welcome news that – after a period out of print – this classic book has now been reissued. (That’s my copy in the photograph above; it just arrived). [continue …]

2022-10-04T09:23:40+00:00March 11th, 2021|knowing, most read|

Articles in Resilience

Social Food Forum | The Internet of Things and Earth Repair | Design Agenda for Bioregions | Peak Car | Re-wilding the Bauhaus | The City as a Living System (a selection of my texts selected for publication by Resilience magazine)

2022-10-04T09:23:49+00:00May 14th, 2020|most read|

How To Thrive In the Next Economy: Preface to the Chinese edition

A cultural disconnection between the man-made world and the biosphere lies behind the grave challenges we face today. We either don’t think about rivers, soils, and biodiversity at all – or we treat them as resources whose only purpose is to feed the economy. This ‘metabolic rift’ – between the [continue …]

2022-10-04T10:10:09+00:00October 31st, 2018|development, knowing, most read, urban-rural|

Manifesto For Utopias Are Over: Cities Are Living Systems

I was asked to write a provocation for DAMN magazine in Italy.

1         Change and innovation are no longer about finely crafted ‘visions’ of some future place and time. Positive change happens when people reconnect – with each other, and with the biosphere – in rich, real-world, [continue …]

2022-10-08T16:07:22+00:00September 19th, 2016|most read, urban-rural|

No organism is truly autonomous – including us

An interview with Jonny Gordon-Farleigh, the editor and publisher of STIR magazine.
Current and back issues of the magazine are available in the online shop

Jonny Gordon-Farleigh: Your new book, How to Thrive in the Next Economy, explores practical innovations in [continue …]

2023-04-21T16:16:47+00:00March 26th, 2016|most read, urban-rural|

Bioregions: Notes On A Design Agenda

In myriad projects around the world, a new economy is emerging whose core value is stewardship, not extraction. Growth, in this new story, means soils, biodiversity and watersheds getting healthier, and communities more resilient. These seedlings are cheering, but [continue …]

2023-02-19T10:55:40+00:00April 23rd, 2015|most read, urban-rural|

Keep Your Stuff Alive

The Tending and Grooming Station (below) is a wondrous collection of combs, brushes and other obscure (to me) gadgets. They are used to primp and revive pre-loved sweaters and cardigans that have been disfigured by bobbles and pilling – those unattractive fuzz balls that appear when short fibers misbehave on woolen garments. 

[continue …]

2022-10-04T10:15:08+00:00April 2nd, 2014|most read|

Cloud Commuting

A two-year project in Belgium proposes new relationships between people, goods, energy, equipment, spaces, and value. Its design objective: a networked mobility ecosystem 

Mobilotoop taxi-van

The signs on the small van describe the services it supports: Taxi; Pick-up; Delivery; Assistance; Vendor; Security; Rental.

Seven [continue …]

2022-10-04T10:15:16+00:00March 25th, 2014|most read, moving|

A Whole New Cloth: Politics and the Fashion System

In fashion, despite more than 400 eco labels, an incremental ‘do less harm’ approach has addressed the symptoms, but not the principal cause, of our difficulties: an economy based on perpetual growth in a finite world. A new and global ‘leave things better’ politics affirms our co-dependency with living systems [continue …]

2022-10-04T10:15:57+00:00January 5th, 2014|most read|

The Dementia Care Economy

Yesterday’s G8 Dementia Summit made much of the fact that millions will now be spent in a race to identify a cure or a ‘disease-modifying therapy’ for dementia.  The likely outcome will be the creation of a Dementia Industrial Complex – and the mass production of un-met expectations.A better way for [continue …]

2022-10-21T12:23:49+00:00December 19th, 2013|care, most read|

The Ecozoic City

Over the ages we’ve invested huge amounts of effort and energy to keep cities and nature separate. What would it mean if that were about to change? 

[continue …]

2022-10-04T10:19:08+00:00March 19th, 2013|most read, urban-rural|

Transition Dogville

In Lars von Trier’s 2003 film Dogville (below) there is almost no set. Buildings in the town are represented by a series of white outlines on the floor. Dogville was a to-the-limit exercise in what von Trier calls ‘pure cinema’ – a commitment to use only real locations, and no special effects [continue …]

2022-10-04T10:19:11+00:00October 4th, 2012|most read|

5% health: The risk of catabolic collapse and peak fat in modern health systems, what to do about them, and how design can help

I was emboldened, upon arriving at the Mayo Clinic ‘s Centre for Innovation last week, to learn that people with deep domain knowledge do not make the best innovators. I concluded that I was therefore well-qualified to [continue …]

2022-10-21T14:40:24+00:00September 21st, 2011|care, most read|
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