Creating global prosperity without economic growth


The Post Growth Challenge: $100 to Change the World(view)

by Sharon Ede on 26th February 2013

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When it comes to advancing real sustainability, what big thing could you do with just a small amount of money and a little help?

The Post Growth Institute team are collectively chipping in US$100, offering a free hour with our start-up whiz, Donnie Maclurcan, and providing promotional support for a person or group that comes up with an idea we judge as most likely to help advance the world(view) beyond economic growth.

Around the world, people are doing innovative things to demonstrate the possibilities of post growth futures. These include participating in superhero tours, organising thought-provoking public stunts, assembling bicycle-powered generators to power local businesses, starting  community gardens, creating powerful infographics, organising film festivals, and just giving money away!

We want to know your big idea.

No idea is too crazy – anything goes!  All we ask is that you express your idea in 300 words, or less, or on one A4 page if you’re presenting something visually. If your proposal is selected, you will receive $100 and our support, and we also ask that you try out your idea within three months and write a short piece for our blog about your experience.

Don’t forget, ideas often don’t need big budgets in order to change the game (we just thought a little cash and support might help things along!). Think of the Free Hugs movement. Similarly, we began Free Money Day in 2011 without a budget; drawing, instead, on the immense skills within our network of volunteers. For general help with establishing world-changing projects, you may want to check-out: Idealist (USA); IdeaEncore (USA); SI Consulting (Australia); the Unreasonable Institute (Global); and the Awesome Foundation (global).

Submit your ideas in the comments section below or anywhere on our Facebook page by 5pm (EST), Friday 8th March, and we’ll announce and be in touch with the winner on Facebook, Monday 11th March. Money will be transferred via PayPal or another mutually suitable means.

Please pass on this opportunity to anyone you feel may be interested. Together, let’s use a few dollars to create a whole lot of change.

This post was written by

avatar Sharon is an ideas transmitter, writer and activist who writes, collects, and shares stories on communication and change for sustainability at cruxcatalyst and is founder of Share Adelaide Share Adelaide. Sharon has been working on sustainability issues in paid and voluntary work since 1993 and loves playing connect the dots by cultivating a wide network of people working on sustainability.

Sharon has written 39 posts on Post Growth Institute. Contact Sharon


avatar Chris Baulman February 28, 2013 at 17:36

There is plenty of support for management and hierarchy process available on the net, but to my knowledge there has been no platform, no template with inbuilt protection and encouragement for a collaborative cooperative process. Only such a template can encourage engagement, personal empowerment, consensus and responsibility. Only such a process can break the corrupting power grip which hierarchy encourages and rewards.

My project is to develop a template and make it free and intuitive to use.

avatar katharine March 2, 2013 at 02:07

I teach ten year olds, live on a small farm in Norway (we are two transplanted US/former US citizens), and try to live as sustainably as possible. We grow our own organic food, save seed and share seed, raise chickens, goats, and ducks, barter and trade with our neighbors and friends. Teaching ten year-olds is remarkable- and they continually provoke me to see the world, and possibilities, in their own eyes. Two years ago our class initiated a pledge drive, and two of my pledges were to buy an electric car and never buy any new clothing again- ever. I have kept both pledges for the past two years. However, I love fashion and used clothes, and started looking in garage sales, used stores, etc. for material and sources to recreate my own designs. Last January, I started a small ‘business’ on a site in Norway, with just a few items I had made, but my dream is to make this bigger than myself. Today I set up a facebook page for ‘denne lille jord’ (this little earth) then suddenly also saw the link to this contest. My idea for this initiative is simple- a collective of like-minded designers seamstresses/seamsters, who agree to zero carbon production- even the electricity in Norway can be pledged from sustainable sources. Together, I believe, we can bring sustainable shopping and clothing to this small community at the same time as we offer jobs for many people in this area, and a model for others to follow. We can use the money for sewing machines, materials, publicity and our first fashion show. Most important would be the publicity and legitimacy for truly ethical zero carbon fashion. Check my new fb page at ‘denne lille jord’. Thank you!

avatar Rob Dietz March 8, 2013 at 13:10

I wrote Enough Is Enough with Dan O’Neill. This book represents our best effort to explain how we can build an economy that works for people and the planet. It’s getting great reviews — Noam Chomsky calls it “lucid, informed, and highly constructive,” and it seems to be resonating with readers.

The trouble is that governmental leaders are unlikely to read it, because they never consider the steady-state economy as a practical and hopeful alternative to perpetual economic growth. The idea for the Post Growth Challenge is to deliver a copy of Enough Is Enough to a selected set of young and upcoming U.S. Congressional Representatives and follow up with them by email and phone. The purpose is to develop a group of lawmakers who understand the dangers of pursuing infinite growth and are aware of the desirable alternative. Such a group could become the voice of reason in the wake of environmental and economic crises that are heading our way.


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