[P2P-F] Fwd: [CommonGood] european affairs

Michel Bauwens michel at p2pfoundation.net
Fri Jul 3 11:19:31 CEST 2015

report on the first meeting, followed by  personal appreciation by birgit

* Birgit Daiber:*

"On May 26, the Intergroup on the Commons was launched. The conference
focused on the definition of the commons and included the participation of
both scholars and activists. It aimed at sharing experiences and analysis
on what the commons are, how they can be relevant for Europe and what role
the intergroup can play within the debate on the commons. This launch -
first event of a long series to come - is the preliminary step for future
activities of the intergroup, whose board is composed by M. Matias
(GUE/GNL), S. Cofferati (S&D), A. Jongerius (S&D), D. Tamburrano (EFDD) and
E. Urtasun (Greens).

The meeting started with a video by Stefano Rodotà - Italian legal scholar
expert of commons - focusing on the importance of the commons from a legal
perspective in a context of social and economic crisis, and on the
connection between the debate of the commons and fundamental rights.

The first panel focused on legal, economic and political approach to the
commons, with interventions by Anne Le Strat (former president of Aqua
Publica Europea), Paolo Napoli (legal scholar) and Benjamin Coriat
(economist). Several key aspects of the debate and of the definition of the
commons were discussed with legal and economic contributions going from
Ostrom, to the current legal approach of Italian scholars.

The idea that it is time for commons to find their place in the legal
debate was reinforced; this should be done by adopting a perspective that
considers law as a dynamic tool, both at national and European level.
Furthermore, it was stressed that it is time for making commons part of the
European political debate, using them to pave the way for alternatives to
the current socio-economic model.

During the second panel, some concrete examples and experiences were
presented. Two relevant perspectives were discussed within the debate:
water and digital commons. For the digital perspective, Michel Bauwens
(Director and founder of the P2P Foundation) and Ricardo La Fuente (Free
Culture Activist) discussed the importance of participatory processes and
cooperation. Jan Willeam Goudriaan (vice president of the ECI Right2Water
and Secretary General of EPSU) and Ruben Martinez Moreno (Fundacion de los
Communes and la Hidra Cooperativa) elaborated on water and commons.

Goudriaan underlined the importance of future approaches of the intergroup
in view of the interaction with the European Commission policy process.
Moreno focused on the commons as a way to reinvent the concept of public
and to respond to economic and social crisis, especially in more affected
countries such as Spain and Greece. Creativity, sustainability, transition,
participation and circularity are among the key words that emerged from the
interventions and the following debate. Both panels, indeed, were followed
by interesting debates with the audience, which was itself made of
activists and organisations involved in the debate about the commons.

Different areas of interest for the future of the intergroup have been
identified at the level of theoretical analysis as well as of concrete
experiences. The importance of a legal recognition of the commons,
including in a human rights perspective, goes in parallel with the
discussion on property and State. It emerged the importance of elaborating
a reflection based on practices, such as: urban commons, natural resources,
self-organised workplaces, collaborative economy, digital commons and
knowledge. The global scale of the debate was also stressed, referring to
the threats represented by international trade agreements such as the CETA
and the TTIP.

The event was closed by the MEPs involved in the board who are committed to
the topic and are oriented to create a space for further discussions. In
particular, the role to be played by civil society was strongly stressed by
the MEPs (and by the public along the whole debate). Furthermore, in the
view of the need for a legal recognition of the commons, recognized by all
the participants as fundamental, two possible steps are identified by the
MEPs: on the one hand a more consistent analysis of what already exists and
can be used to protect and reinforce the commons and, on the other hand,
the elaboration of a joint resolution on the Commons.

A lot was discussed and still a lot remains to be done. But, it’s
definitely time for the commons in Europe!"
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Birgit Daiber <bir.dai at hotmail.com>
Date: Fri, Jul 3, 2015 at 1:18 PM
Subject: [CommonGood] european affairs
To: "commongood at listi.jpberlin.de" <commongood at listi.jpberlin.de>

 Dear Friends and Colleagues,

sorry to be late  informing  about the first session of the Intergroup on
Common Goods in the European Parliament on May 27.  I’m continuously trying
to understand the driving interests destroying the European Union as we
have known it in these days. Seen from a European point of view the battle
led by some Governments (Germany, The Netherlands, Finland and the Baltic
States in the first row) seems to be irrational and missing the least sense
of common interest.  No beautification by the propaganda machines can help
to hide this. What is called “compromise” is the expression of
intransigence and unwillingness to find solutions for the existential
problems most of the EU-Countries are facing in the 7th year of the
continuing crisis. Europe as a political entity seems to fall apart and
national interests command. This means: it’s not only a continuous battle
upon the biggest piece of the cake it’s splitting up into winners and
losers. This is the lesson we learn from the Greece case: While the winners
try to lead the Left Government of Greece like a lamb to the slaughter they
execute their victory and continue to tell the myths of austerity policy to
those Euro-Zone-countries (it’s the majority of the 19 Euro-Zone-States)
still fighting against high and higher growing state-debts and mass
unemployment. And all those countries suffering difficulties and
potentially belonging to the losers keep quiet and are afraid to be the
next getting under fire.

Just to remind: weren’t there the two basic promises of the 20th-century’s
European Integration wealth for all citizens and peace?  Well, the
European Integration tells another story.  Wealth is something exclusively
for winners –  i.e. minorities within the countries and a few countries
within the European Union. And even peace is under threat if we look to
Ukraine and some initiatives of Baltic States and Poland  for a military
intervention …

But let’s come back to the first session of the Intergroup on Common Goods
in the European Parliament. Attached you find the conclusion of the event
by Elisabetta Cangelosi and a kind of roadmap for the debates.

The debates in Italy (with the history of the referendum on water as common
good) are the most advanced reflecting the content and strategic options.
A interesting input gave Ernest Urtasun from the Catalonian left-green
party – referring to a more general approach for a Fundamental Charter on
Common Goods.

With all best wishes – Yours, Birgit

*bir.dai at hotmail.com <bir.dai at hotmail.com>*
*www.birgitdaiber.eu <http://www.birgitdaiber.eu>*
*Fon: 0039-090-9452432*
*Mobile: 0039-366-4207762*

*Brussels: Rue du Canal 19, B-1000 Brussels*

*Sicily: Casella Postale No. 28, I-98055 Lipari*

CommonGood Mailingliste
JPBerlin - Politischer Provider
CommonGood at listi.jpberlin.de

Check out the Commons Transition Plan here at: http://commonstransition.org

P2P Foundation: http://p2pfoundation.net  - http://blog.p2pfoundation.net

http://twitter.com/mbauwens; http://www.facebook.com/mbauwens

#82 on the (En)Rich list: http://enrichlist.org/the-complete-list/
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