NPQ – Current Issue – Building the (Co-) Ownership Society

The following interview with Gar Alperovitz serves this sector with a major challenge. Alperovitz believes that the ground we have lost in recent years with regard to our social contract provisions should alert us to the need for a broad new strategy. This strategy draws from previous eras in which a new form of social contract is experimented with before it is parried at a national level. In this case, Alperovitz focuses on the concept of ownership and wealth development, posing a more collective model against an individual model of ownership. Clearly, this kind of social experimentation is entirely native to us and in our imaginings, such activity could conceivably address and link many problems of social exclusion. But is this the way to go? To give us some additional perspective we have asked Rick Cohen, a veteran of community building work to comment; and to help make Alperovitz’s ideas a little more concrete, we have asked Bob Agres, of the Hawai‘i Alliance for Community-Based Economic Development (HACBED) to discuss a strategy they have pursued at both local and state levels.

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