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University of Creation Spirituality
Doctor of Ministry Degree/Certificate Program

June, 2003 Intensive
Week 2: June 16 - 20

Seminar: Local Living Economies
- # 60059

Instructor: Victor Bremson/David Korten

Faculty Bio: Victor Bremson spent 30 years as a corporate turnaround consultant where he helped to restructure many companies that were in severe financial condition. He was the president and CEO of three companies. During that period of time he observed the growth of giant multi-national corporations who use predatory pricing practices to control and take over large market segments and destroyed many small and local independent businesses. He also watched the general breakdown of the environment and local community institutions. While studying for a Doctorate degree at the University of Creation Spirituality he began working with David Korten to understand the ideas around a local living economy.

David Korten is a world known writer and lecturer. He is the author of numerous articles and books on subjects dealing with corporate power and globalization. 

Course Description:This course will discuss the idea that a local living economy is based on the principles of Creation Spirituality. It is the living it into being. We will examine this course through the four paths. Each participant will be asked to share a story from their community of an example of a local living economy. (See pre-paper)

Via Positiva- We will celebrate the Via Positiva by studying the connectiveness of everything within a bio-system. A mature forest is a perfect example of a local living economy in nature. We will examine how we can relate this learning to a human economy. We will list those attributes in nature that would be found in a local living economy. 

Via Negativa- We will study the idea of predators in nature. We will enter the world of materialism and consumption. We will take note of our personal responsibility to the problem. Exploring areas like voluntary simplicity, addiction and the impact of media and advertising on our lives. We will discuss our transformation from citizen to consumer.

Via Creativa- We will imagine what a new economic structure could look like. We will begin to see how we will need to grow new structures in order to move from our current ‘suicide economy’ into a living economy. We will spend some time mapping all the amazing efforts that are already being accomplished in order to reduce the magnitude of this work. Our local living economy will begin to take shape. We will begin to list those principles and values that we would want to see in a local living economy. How should all stakeholders be treated? What kind of institutions should we be building to strengthen our communities?

Via Transformita- We will move from a definition of wealth as financial assets to a definition of wealth as community. We will look closely at existing models of companies/communities that are demonstrating the attributes of a local living economy today. We will begin the transformation back from consumer to citizen.

Required Reading: * (4 books in total)

    1. David C. Korten, “The Post Corporate World”*
    2. David C. Korten  “When Corporations Rule the World”.
    3. Michael Shuman, “Going Local”
    4. Jane Jacobs, “The Nature of Economies”
    5. Paul Hawkin, Amory Lovins and Hunter Lovins, “Natural Capitalism: Creating the Next Industrial Revolution
    6. Ray Oldenburg, “Celebrating Third Places”
    7. Stuart Cowan, www.conservationeconomy.org  (Patterns)
    8. Elisabet Sahtouris, “Earth Dance”
    9. William McDonough, “Cradle to Cradle”
    10. Bernard Lietaer, “The Future of Money”
    11. Judy Wicks, “White Dog Café Cookbook”
    12. YES Magazine – August 2002 Issue on Living Economies (Part of this magazine can be found on line at YesMagazine.Com)

    * Students must read “The Post Corporate World” plus any 3other titles above.

    Pre-Class Writing Assignment:        5-8 pages

    Find an example of a local living economy in your community and write 6-10 pages about it. Describe why you think it is a living economy? Who started it? Why? What kind of emergence has it already created within the community? What are the organizers future plans? Come prepared to share your story with the class.

    (For purposes of this assignment a local living economy can be a company that is demonstrating a lot of the attributes that you have read about or an entire community.)

    Post-Class Writing Assignment:      5-15 pages

    To be determined during the class

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