- By DPU International College
- Posted December 24, 2009
Aj. Bauwens has been traveling a little bit recently, lecturing in Germany and Spain about peer to peer dynamics and open business models. This is a report on his recent research and publication activities, mostly centered around the topics of ‘peer to peer’ and the ‘commons’.
In Germany, in May, he attended a retreat in a medieval castle (Crottorf, near Siegen, East of Cologne), discussing the Future of the Commons with 21 people from the most different branches of intellectual and political activity: historians, networkers, project managers, software producers, feminists, political ecologists and social activists, some of them noted authors such as Peter Linebaugh (The Many-Headed Hydra), Sylivia Federici (The Caliban and the Witch). Check out some pictures here while the list of participants is here. One of the participants, Austrian ecologist Andreas Exner, reported on the atmosphere there:
“Our discussions freely evolved over the four days we were “trapped in the castle” as someone put it, without any fixed schedule, giving us in itself an example of the freedom commoning can make possible in the best case. After having done a collective brainstorming of the issues we were interested in, ranging from the relation of commons and criminilization to political economy and basic income, Stefan and Silke arranged the catchwords under headlines. The following days we were tackling each question after the other, with short, rather spontanous inputs, often illustrating opposing views on a specific aspect of the commons. How exciting these moments were, when the group explored the political economy of the commons, their strategic value in an evolving “movement of movements”, that strives to let go the old in order to give room to the new. It’s hard to sum up the diversity of arguments and world views that were made visible by the debate”
In June, in the Spanish capital Madrid, at a stone throw’s from the famous Prado Museum, Aj. Bauwens gave a 3 hour worsshop about distributed infrastructures at the Medialab Prado. The 4th Inclusiva Net Meeting was dedicated to “P2P Networks and Processes”, highlighting the social potentials of cooperative socio-technical systems.
The seminar was entitled, Conditions for the Radicality of the P2P Paradigm, and attempted to “to describe the emergence of p2p models in various domains, look at their commonalities, and see how they can be integrated in a strategy for social change, that creates the conditions for a sustainable and ‘just’ society. Different scenarios will be presented, from the full integration of p2p in a market economy, via hybrid modes, via the hypothesis of a political economy where peer to peer would be the core logic of value creation.”
We have not seen any blog reports on the meeting yet, but there was active ‘backchanneling’ by participants using Twitter, around a specific hashtag, #inclusiva, as you can see here.
On the publication front, the in-house academic journal of DPU, the Suthiparithat Journal, published an article “The Importance of Buddhist Economics and other Neotraditional Approaches to the Financial Meltdown” (pp. 129-140). An online version is available here. This was written for a lecture at the 2nd international conference of the Buddhist Economics Research Platform held at Ubon Ratchatani University on April 9-11, 2009.
Framework, the Finnish Art Review on contemporary art and culture, dedicated its latest issue on the ‘Rescue Plan” for the current financial meltdown. Bauwens provided a 12 page essay after his participation at the Pixelache festival in April 2009. The essay is not yet online but a draft is available here.
Aj. Bauwens is particularly happy with a long personal interview which appeared this month in both Malayalam (one of the languages spoken in Kerala, India) and English, on the occasion of a Free Software Conference held in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. For those who are curious it has a lot of details on the background of the work with the P2P Foundation which is the research umbrella.
Watch the following lecture by Bauwens on P2P, in Helsinki, Finland