Post-growth conference in Brussels
From 18-19 September 2018 a post-growth conference supported by various stakeholders (Members of the European Parliament from different political groups, academics, NGOs and unions) took place in the premises of the European Parliament. The date coincided with the 10th anniversary of the collapse of the US Bank Lehman Brothers that sparked the economic crisis in which we are still trapped.
Given its central location close to the heart of the European Union decision-making, the conference offered a unique opportunity for the EU civil society to confront their views with those of EU officials and staff that defines the core of the economic model and political priorities. Considering that the latter are not compatible with a fair and ecological transformation of our societies, workshops were addressing the theoretical design of models used to frame the European economy, the relevance and feasibility of basic income schemes, the ultimate goal of the internal market and the environmental consequences of technological progress. The aim of these days – about one year before the next European elections and the nomination of a new Commission – was to create a cultural contagion effect by which the thinking of policy makers could tilt towards genuine sustainability.
The work was preceded by a preparatory session at the Université Libre de Bruxelles and followed by a debriefing and exchanges on how to coalesce allies to ensure that change will actually happen.