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globe logo     Caravan: Newsletter of the Alliance for a Responsible and United World
Number 2 December 1998

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 · Future for globalisation
 · New exchanges
 · Investment
 · Citizens' Movements
 · Workshop Information
 · Porto Alegre meeting
 · Economy & women
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The first animators of the WSSE

ADSP (Agence pour le développement des services de proximité)
Contacts: Laurent Fraisse

76, rue Pouchet, 75017 Paris, France
Tel.: 33 1 40 25 10 79
Fax: 33 1 42 29 93 25

PACS (Instituto Politicas Alternativas para o Cone Sul)
Contact: Marcos Arruda, Sandra Quintela

Rua Joaquim Silva, 56 - 8º andar Centro , Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brasil 20241-110
Tel.: 55 21 252 03 66
Fax: 55 21 224 31 07

Workshop on a
Socio-Economy of Solidarity

Does the way in which the today's world economy is configured fulfill the needs and aspirations of well-being and happiness of humankind?

Has the response given by the "free market" and by the State given the expected results?

How can we, human beings, convert the economy into a sphere accessible to all, one that generates the essential for the survival of each and every citizen of national and global societies, and that liberates our labor time and creative capacity to apply ourselves to the development of the specifically human dimensions of our being -ethics, aesthetics, communication, affection, conviviality?

How can we reorient science and submit technology to the democratic control of society and to its highest aims?

These are some of the question that the Workshop on a Socio-Economy of Solidarity (WSSE) seeks to reply, in the light of the thought and experiences of its allies. Would you like to participate?

What is the Workshop on a Socio-Economy of Solidarity?

The WSSE is a thematic group of the Alliance. The name Canteiro (workshop), in Portuguese means a garden where one sows, cultivates, reaps and replants. This is why we see a human hand carrying earth with a seedling as the symbol of the WSSE. In Portuguese, Spanish and French it also means a construction site. The Workshop's purposes are to:

  • Contribute to the formulation and exchange of ideas and actions towards a profound transformation of the political economy and the social and economic practices, inspired by values such as co-responsibility and solidarity;

  • Rethink the socio-economy in an organic perspective centered on the human being, from the local to the global level;

  • Articulate the experiences which incorporate these values;

  • Overcome the paradigms and the practices of thinking and doing economics that alienate and limit the human being;

  • Cooperate in a participatory process of building a sharing and cooperative socio-economy; a culture centered on the values of solidarity and co-responsibility with respect to one another and to the Earth; and a power structure in which working people control economic assets and have decision-making power, and the State is made a true service to civil society and the accountable and transparent regulator and orchestrator of social diversity.

How do we intend to make the WSSE operative?

We are now establishing a few animation poles in different continents and geocultural regions of the world. These poles enlarge the partnerships and integrate new allies to the dynamic of research and action; they animate the participatory process of building alliances around those goals, in space and in time; they facilitate the means to develop transparently the dialogue aimed at producing reflections and proposals, based on the exchange of ideas and experiences; they define the fields of reflection and the work themes and sub-themes; they incite the allies to contribute with innovative initiatives and proposals and to disseminate and popularize all this information.

One of the means of communication between allies is the Electronic Forum, in which you can participate if you wish to become an active ally. The forum is a space of dialogue, but not of exchange of texts and documents. The WSSE Website [] is the appropriate place for the exchange of texts and documents. Allies who wish to share them with the WSSE network can send them to the animator of their geocultural region and they will be included in a data base we are developing, and thus made accessible to all through the WSSE site. One of the important entries of the site will be the data base on alternative proposals and practices. We intend to have two types of records, one, documentary, the other, synthetic cards that can be easily and quickly read by all.

The WSSE will stimulate precisely the dialogue about alternative proposals and practices in the context of each thematic field. The purpose is to elaborate a consistent set of proposals that we will present in the events the Alliance is organizing at the turn of the century.

The WSSE is organizing Meetings by geocultural area or by thematic field, and intends to organize an International Meeting before the Alliance events of years 2000-2001. These Meetings aim at gathering the most active and committed people and formulate a global framework of questions and proposals for change.

Currently (November 1998) we have a global animation team and animators in two geocultural areas, one in the Latin area (Latin America and Iberian Peninsula) and the other in Europe. All progress in building a lively and active Workshop depends on each one of us and also on you. The only burden we ask you to take is to share with us your ideas and experiences in your specific field of professional, eco-social and political commitment. Write to us!

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© 2000 Alliance for a Responsible and United World. All rights reserved. Last updated February 9, 2000.