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LogoPageLogos - länderübergreifend
TitleECG International Newsletter
ReleaseJuly 2019
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Dear supporters and members of the ECG,

It's been an exciting summer for the ECG so far and we're happy to get this newsletter off to you before we head off for summer vacation (or "holidays" as the Brits like to say).

Bridget and Gus just returned from a week-long convention with around 140 Economy for the Common Good activists in Mannheim, Germany. It was a productive, inspirational and fun week. In the future it would be great to have such a convention for the global movement. We were lucky enough to have one participant travel all the way from Denver, USA. The week was full of workshops with working groups (hubs), spontaneously-formed action groups, and provocative exchanges. The temperatures were unbearably hot and the ice cream parlor around the corner was a popular oasis.

Our movement is growing by the day as you can see on the list of supporters and members on our webpage. If you haven't yet, you are welcome to sign up as a member or as a supporter.

Exciting events are in the pipeline for the second half of this year. If you are active in the ECG and have some news, please let us know (gus.hagelberg@ecogood.org).

Greetings from the editors,

Bridget Knapper and Gus Hagelberg

Topics in this issue:

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Sparda-Bank München

Pioneer business publishes its fourth common good balance sheet

The Sparda-Bank München in Bavaria, Germany is one of the pioneer companies which adopted ECG values in 2010 and was the first bank with a Common Good Balance Sheet. Operating with the motto, 'the way is the goal', it has just published its fourth Common Good Balance Sheet (CGBS) for the years 2015 to 2017. The bank chairman, Helmut Lind, is one of the ECG Ambassadors and gives presentations on ECG ideas as an important mechanism for bringing about the social and economic change needed. Sparda-Bank München is a cooperative and prioritises the interests of its members over making a profit. A glance at the four balance sheets shows an increase in common good points scored from 318 in 2011 to 602 in 2017. The point of the the CGBS, however, is not the final point score but the decisions that are made in a company, as a result of the information in the balance sheet, to address the changes needed to become better global corporate citizens. Sparda-Bank München has increased its ethical financial management considerably (from 30% to 70%). It has facilitated greater employee participation and increased transparency (22% to 70%). Customers benefit from products and services which have been designed to meet their needs (30% to 60%). It is in this way that the Common Good Balance Sheet measures what truly matters. Sparda-Bank München is a true pioneer in how banks and money should be in service to people, society and the environment.

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Not the Nobel

An alternative award for a more human- and planet-friendly economist

In the first week of October this year, an award will be presented to an economist who is judged to be providing fresh economic thinking. Economy for the Common Good is working in partnership on this project with a group of new economy organisations coordinated by Promoting Economic Pluralism, including Rethinking Economics, Circular Economy Club, WEALL, Decolonising & Demystifying Economics and Dollars and Sense.

The environmental, social and political crises we are currently facing have their source in how we think about and organise our economy. This includes the focus on ever-increasing economic growth, our understanding of economic 'common sense', the fact that companies are driven by profit and the promotion of markets as 'the solution'. We can only escape these crises if we break out of this thinking and this way of organising our economy. The mainstream has excluded most alternative perspectives even after its humiliating failure to see the possibility of the 2008 financial crisis. We need innovation and fresh thinking. In the 50th anniversary year of the official prize, this alternative Nobel prize is a way to raise awareness of the range and depth of positive, pluralist economists. Members of the public will be invited to nominate their chosen economist in an open process starting in September. The shortlisted names will be voted on in a live-streamed event in London on Thursday 3 November. ECG Local Chapters and other groups are encouraged to host events linked to the Not the Nobel Prize and to encourage their members to nominate and raise awareness of the issues.

For further information contact bridget.knapper@ecguk.org

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Argentina

Getting started: First National Meeting

On April 19th and 20th April, the first National Meeting of ECG Argentina was held in Traslasierras Valley, Cordoba province. It was an intense weekend and a lot of hard work was done, as it brought together for the first time all local chapter representatives of the cities Buenos Aires, La Plata and Cordoba. The two days were packed with activities in which all participants debated and finally reached an agreement about what the following steps are in order to move forward with ECG’s consolidation in this country.

The current economic and social situation of Argentina was reviewed. Under the idea of contributing to change, the next challenges were defined: to decide on a mission and vision of ECG’s Argentina movement (in Spanish: Economía del Bien Común, EBC) and draft articles of association and to build an action plan for 2020.

ECG Argentina’s vision will be to incorporate ECG’s values in public policy through laws and regulations as well as in people’s daily lives, in companies and organizations in general.

The following principle guidelines were drawn up to realise the vision:

  • Encourage and facilitate civic participation through assemblies, forums and meetings
  • Promote the use of the Common Good Balance Sheet as a management tool
  • Work with national and regional governments to adopt ECG principles
  • To develop specific tools and programs for people and companies in order to encourage them to contribute to ECG

Participants of the first national ECG meeting in Argentina included Renée Carrelo, Martín Macchia, Paola Podrecca from Buenos Aires; Pablo Rodriguez from La Plata; Ariel Serman, Claudio Viale, Carlos Viale and Luciana Cornaglia from Córdoba. All of them worked side by side in a joint effort so that ECG Argentina (or EBC) would make its first steps towards its consolidation.

For further information on please contact the Argentina Local Chapter.

Strasbourg, France

European capital of the social and solidarity economy

The international ECG speakers hub will be meeting in Strasbourg from the 2 - 3 November, 2019. This will be the second gathering after the first very successful meeting, generously hosted by Jean-Jacques and Christine Neale in Belgium in February this year. The group which was made up of people from many countries got to know each other and discussed with Christian Felber how best to present ECG at conferences and talks.

Our second meeting will be with Christian Felber in Strasbourg, which is the capital of the social and solidarity economy 2019 and with which we have many points in common. November also marks the beginning of the Social and Solidarity Economy Month in Strasbourg. The European metropolis is interested in engaging with ECG and we will keep you posted in the next newsletter about any further programme of activity.

Luxembourg - Économie pour le bien commun Luxembourg

Press conference on 3 June, visit from Christian Felber on 4 June

At the beginning of June 2019, a new ECG organisation was founded in Luxembourg. Its aim is to promote the spread of the ECG in Luxembourg and to encourage companies and municipalities to behave ethically and in solidarity.

"The 22 founding members of the Luxembourg association of business, administration and society consider it necessary that the Economy for the Common Good be institutionalised in Luxembourg and that the idea of a different economy be spread according to the idea of the ECG. In particular, companies are to be won which draw up their first balance sheets, learn from them and act as multipliers," says Raymond Aendekerk, President of the association.

In 2014, the OIKOPOLIS Group prepared its first Common Good Balance Sheet and the municipality of Mertzig wants to become the first Common Good Municipality in Luxembourg.

Further information contact luxemburg@ecogood.org

Italy

ECG Italy elects new Board of Directors

On March 30th, members of the Italian ECG Association elected the new Board of Directors which will hold office for the next 3 years. Lidia Di Vece (l.divece@febc.eu - Piemonte local chapter) is the new president, Marta Avesani (m.avesani@febc.eu - Veneto Local Chapter) and Stella Catto (s.catto@febc.eu - Veneto Local Chapter) are the new vice-president. Johanna Donà (j.dona@febc.eu - Southern Tyrol Local Chapter) is the new treasurer and Graziano Tolve (g.tolve@febc.eu - Trentino Local Chapter) is responsible for the secretariat. Bernhard Oberrauch (b.oberrauch@febc.eu - Sud Tirol Local Chapter) and Francesco Caccamo (f.caccamo@febc.eu - Piemonte Local Chapter) are also part of the board.

The new board identified 6 strategic areas for further development of the movement in Italy and gave responsibility to each board member for a specific area:

Member and Local Chapters management: Johanna Donà and Graziano Tolve

Common Good Matrix and research: Stella Catto, Marta Avesani and Bernhard Oberrauch

Consultant and auditor management and training: Marta Avesani Bernhard Oberrauch and Stella Catto

Communication: Graziano Tolve, Marta Avesani and Stella Catto

Public relations and alliances: Lidia Di Vece, Francesco Caccamo

Fundraising: Francesco Caccamo and Johanna Donà

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ECG Radio Program

Rainald Schwarz and Andrea Behm are pleased to send you the second broadcast of our English ECG radio programme:  
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gieiDygYg2c&list=PLRL6paywz9_IPRJBd4XOdOyTIraQuC-d1.
This time it is about resistance and civil disobedience. You will also hear a speech by Greta Thunberg!

Listen in, use it, spread it among your groups and other ECG friends and send it to those who want to become ECG activists.  Please send us your feedback and your ideas and suggestions for the next broadcasts. And let us know what is going on in your regions and countries. We are happy to include your contributions to make the radio programme even more international.

ECG Videos: Now available in different languages

Check out the ECG's YouTube channel where you can find videos about the movement in various languages. Interviews, reports, etc..

Article in Magazine "sustainability"

The Common Good Balance Sheet, an Adequate Tool to Capture Non-Financials? by Christian Felber, Vanessa Campos, Joan R. Sanchis

"In relation to organizational performance measurement, there is a growing concern about the creation of value for people, society and the environment. The traditional corporate reporting does not adequately satisfy the information needs of stakeholders for assessing an organization’s past and future potential performance." Read more...

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Mertzig, Luxemburg becomes country's first ECG municipality

The city council of Mertzig, Luxemburg unanimously voted to become the country's first ECG municipality.

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Studying for the Common Good

Universities embrace ECG

Education is one of the key strands of the ECG - raising awareness of the need for change and how that change can be made possible. The first universities to complete a Common Good Balance Sheet are the Business School of Lausanne, Switzerland, the Burgenland University in Austria and the IGC of the Hochschule Bremen, Germany.

ECG has been adopted into the curricula of some university and high school courses. In partnership with ECG, the Cusanus Hochschule offers the study programs Master in Economics and Social Design and Bachelor of Economics and Social Responsibility.

The first international Masters course on Applied Economy for the Common Good is offered at the Studienzentrum Saalfelden in cooperation with the Burgenland University and the AIM Austrian Institute of Management. The University of Valencia, Spain has a Chair in the Economy for the Common Good. At the University of Surrey, UK, ECG is introduced as part of the 'Professional Ethics' module, which is a compulsory module taught to about 180 second year undergraduate students.

During the lecture 'Business Ethics & CSR in Tourism, Hospitality and Events',  ECG is presented as a progressive model for business and the economy based on the idea that our central purpose should be to contribute to the common good, and that profit should be a means to an end, not an end in itself.

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AEMS Summer School 2019

24.07. - 09.08.2019, Vienna, Austria

Alternative Economic and Monetary Systems Summer School 2019

AEMS is an academic Summer School that offers a new approach: An evaluation of economic alternatives that considers natural boundaries and the human factor to be equal parts of the equation. Our goal: To help solve some of societies’ problems by presenting viable alternatives to processes and developments that are putting enormous strains on economic, ecologic and social boundaries.

  • July 30, 10.15: Christian Felber on Sovereign Money
  • Aug 5, 14:30: Christian Felber on The Economy for the Common Good

ECG Speakers Training in Strasbourg

2.11. - 3.11.2019, France

You are, just as us, promoting Economy for the Common Good. Who of you speaks occasionally about the Economy for the Common Good? If you are - or if you intend to become - a speaker for the Economy for the Common Good, this meeting is for you. We will share experiences about speeches, interviews, press conferences, discussion panels, in public meetings or on radio or television with guidance and advice of Christian Felber.

We will focus on handling objections from a content point of view, that go beyond the 'Frequently Asked Questions' chapter at the end of the book. The session will take place in Strasbourg in the weekend of 2nd and 3rd of November. We will come back to you for practical arrangements once we know your interest for attendance.

Please get in touch with Christine Vanderlieb (christine.vanderlieb@wanadoo.fr) if you would like to attend.

Leading from the Emerging Future with the Presencing Institute

Theory U course for individuals and groups leading profound social, environmental and personal transformation.

This online course with live video sessions with Otto Scharmer from the Presencing Institute and his team is ideal for groups who want to work together 'with head, heart and hand' to bring about the sort of change which ECG envisages.

"We live in a time of disruptive change. How to activate our capacity to lean into the emerging future may well be the most important leadership challenge of our time. How do you cultivate curiosity, compassion and courage in the face of prejudice, anger and fear?"

This course is an introduction to a method called Theory U, developed at Massachusetts Institute of Technologoy (MIT), for leading such change in business, government, and civil society contexts worldwide. U.lab will guide you in applying Theory U to an issue that matters to you. You will do so with fellow change makers locally and around the world. Join us as we co-pioneer new approaches to today’s most important social and environmental challenges.

What you'll learn

  • The leadership knowledge that matters most: self-knowledge
  • Capacities of deep listening, precise observation, and dialogue
  • Practices for creating institutional innovations that generate wellbeing in society"

The course will be online from September 12, 2019. To register visit: https://www.edx.org/course/ulab-leading-from-the-emerging-future

Conscious Capitalism European Conference

23.9.2019, Berlin, Germany

At the center of this year's "Conscious Capitalism European Conference" are inspiring stories and personal experiences from business leaders and entrepreneurs on how they implemented one or more tenets of Conscious Capitalism into their businesses and daily lives to create value for all.

Get inspired, meet hundreds of like-minded leaders, exchange your ideas and learn from each other.

ECG balanced companies were invited to speak at the conference. At this time their participation has not yet been confirmed.

To receive your special ticket, please use this registration link and the coupon code EfCG@CCEC19 and get a 10% discount on the ticket price. Earlybird tickets cost €375, after July 18 regular tickets cost €450.



The Economy for the Common Good movement is only possible because of assistance through membership fees, donations and the amazing team of volunteers spread across the globe.

You too can get involved and help:

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If you have any feedback about this newsletter or content for the next one, please send us a note (gus.hagelberg@ecogood.org).