March 20th-22nd, 2020
Presented by Local Futures – The Economics of Happiness &
New Economy Network Australia (NENA)
Byron Community Centre
Byron Bay, Australia
In cooperation with New Economy Network Australia, we are organising an inspiring 3-day event – called ‘Going Local: Hope in a Time of Crisis‘ – with a focus on bridging the gaps between single-issue activist campaigns and presenting a holistic strategy for social, ecological, and economic renewal.
How can we work together to create
a different economic system and
a more beautiful world?
Around the world, there are clear signs that people are ready for fundamental change. We’re now entering into a historic window of opportunity; we urgently need to show there’s a path forward that can reduce greenhouse gas emissions while simultaneously restoring secure livelihoods and reweaving the fabric of community. With this bigger picture in mind, we can unite single-issue campaigns and build a people’s movement powerful enough to translate grassroots solutions into structural policy change.
From food, land, water and human settlements, to businesses, knowledge systems, innovation, production and consumption, this ideas festival focuses on translating understanding into action.
Download the official conference poster here.
Within this context, the 2020 conference has three key themes:
1. Understanding the dominant economic system and global market and its impact on democracy and local economies
2. Showcasing and amplifying strategies for reclaiming local economies for the benefit of people and planet
3. Stories of success – challenging corporate domination of national, regional and local economies
Confirmed speakers include:
Charles Eisenstein (USA) is a speaker and writer focusing on themes of human culture and identity. He is the author of several books, most recently Sacred Economics and The More Beautiful World our Hearts Know is Possible. His background includes a degree in mathematics and philosophy from Yale, a decade in Taiwan as a translator, and stints as a college instructor, a yoga teacher, and a construction worker. He currently writes and speaks full-time. He lives in Pennsylvania with his wife and four children. Read more about Charles at http://charleseisenstein.net.
*Charles will be joining the conference remotely via video.
Dr. David Suzuki (Canada) is a scientist, broadcaster, author, and co-founder of the David Suzuki Foundation. He is Companion to the Order of Canada and a recipient of UNESCO’s Kalinga Prize for science, the United Nations Environment Program medal, the 2012 Inamori Ethics Prize, the 2009 Right Livelihood Award, and UNEP’s Global 500. Dr. Suzuki is Professor Emeritus at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver and holds 29 honorary degrees from universities around the world. He is familiar to television audiences as host of the CBC science and natural history television series The Nature of Things, and to radio audiences as the original host of CBC Radio’s Quirks and Quarks, as well as the acclaimed series It’s a Matter of Survival and From Naked Ape to Superspecies. In 1990 he co-founded with Dr. Tara Cullis, The David Suzuki Foundation to “collaborate with Canadians from all walks of life including government and business, to conserve our environment and find solutions that will create a sustainable Canada through science-based research, education and policy work.” His written work includes more than 55 books, 19 of them for children. Dr. Suzuki lives with his wife and family in Vancouver, B.C. Read more at http://www.davidsuzuki.org/david.
*David will be joining the conference remotely via video.
Helena Norberg-Hodge (Australia) is the founder and director of Local Futures. A pioneer of the new economy movement, she has been promoting an economics of personal, social and ecological well-being for over 40 years. She is the producer and co-director of the award-winning documentary The Economics of Happiness, and is the author of Local is Our Future and Ancient Futures: Learning from Ladakh. She was honored with the Right Livelihood Award for her groundbreaking work in Ladakh, and received the 2012 Goi Peace Prize. Helena is also a founding member of the International Forum on Globalization, the International Commission on the Future of Food and Agriculture, and the Global Ecovillage Network.
Woman Stands Shining (Pat McCabe) (USA) was born into the Diné Nation (Navajo), and was adopted by the Lakota Spiritual way of life. She lives in northern New Mexico, where she spent younger years raising four sons and one daughter. Her gifts are being an articulator of visions, dreams, and symbols as the language of spiritual helpers reaching out to humanity; an enactor of Spiritual counsel; a passionate daughter of the Mother Earth; and an upholder of Mother Earth’s Authority at this time. She speaks, prays, and loves internationally, fully claiming her global citizenship. Current investigations for the healing of the Five-Fingered-Ones are: our use of western science practices to participate in Cause and Effect, the deep spiritual gift of our consent as activism, and the reconciliation between Men’s Nation and Women’s Nation for functional polarity and Thriving Life.
Damon Gameau (Australia) is a director, producer, activist, author, and nominee for Australian of the Year. In 2015 he released his first feature film That Sugar Film, which became the highest grossing Australian documentary across Australia and New Zealand of all time. It has received awards from around the world including the 2015 AACTA Award for Best Documentary. The accompanying book, That Sugar Book, was a best seller in Australia and has since been released in over 20 countries and 8 languages. Damon has recently completed the documentary 2040, which has also become one of the highest grossing Australian documentaries of all time. The 2040 ‘Regeneration’ impact campaign has brought many of the solutions shown in the film to life and has motivated people to take positive action on climate change. The film continues to be shown in schools, within corporations and at Parliamentary levels. It will be released globally in late 2019 and early 2020 along with the accompanying book 2040: A Handbook to the Regeneration.
Dr. Michelle Maloney (Australia) is a lawyer and change maker working to ensure human societies live within their ecological limits, respect the Rights of Nature to exist and thrive, and build effective economic systems that support social justice and ecological health. Michelle is Co-Founder and National Convenor of the Australian Earth Laws Alliance (AELA); Co-Founder and Director of the New Economy Network Australia; Director of Future Dreaming Australia and Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Griffith University Law Futures Centre. Michelle is passionate about building diverse, local economies in Australia, that ensure we can all be part of a fairer and more just society and that we can thrive within healthy, biodiverse bioregions.
Dr. Mary Graham (Australia) is a Kombumerri person (Gold Coast) through her father’s heritage and affiliated with Wakka Wakka (South Burnett) through her mother’s people. Mary has worked across several government agencies, community organisations and universities including: Department of Community Services, Aboriginal and Islander Childcare Agency, the University of Queensland and the Foundation for Aboriginal and Islander Research Action. Mary has also worked extensively for the Foundation for Aboriginal and Islander Research Action, as a Native Title Researcher and was also a Regional Counsellor for the former Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission. Mary has been a lecturer with The University of Queensland, teaching Aboriginal history, politics and comparative philosophy. She has also lectured nationally on these subjects, and developed and implemented ‘Aboriginal Perspective’s’, ‘Aboriginal Approaches to Knowledge’ and at the post-graduation level ‘Aboriginal Politics’ into university curricula.
Berry Liberman (Australia) is the co-founder and creative director of Small Giants, an Impact family office based in Melbourne, Australia that invests in and nurtures businesses working towards a more just, sustainable and compassionate world. The Small Giants family of businesses includes Impact Investment Group, B Lab Australia, Peace Factory, Mossy Willow Farm, The School of Life Australia and Dumbo Feather among others. Berry is also the publisher of Dumbo Feather, a multi-platform media company that publishes long-form conversations with extraordinary thinkers and doers across the world. She believes the stories we tell have a profound effect on the lives we lead and the world we live in, and is passionate about creating spaces and communities that foster robust, substantive conversation.
Albert Wiggan (Australia) is a Bardi-Kija-Nyul Nyul man from the beautiful waters of Boddergron (Cygnet Bay) on the Dampier Peninsula, who describes himself as a passionate indigenous educator. In numerous capacities, he focuses on culture, country and Indigenous science. When the government tried to build the world’s largest LNG plant at James Price Point, Albert lobbied the Supreme Court and fronted a blockade until the developer withdrew from the project. He now works as an environmental consultant with the Nyul Nyul Rangers, is Deputy Chair of the Kimberley Indigenous Saltwater Science Project, Indigenous Chair for Bilbies Australia’s National Recovery Team, and is the Nyul Nyul representative on the board of the Kimberley Land Council. Albert is a recipient of the 2018 San Francisco international environmental hero award, and is the 2019 National Geographic Conservationist of the year. Albert has toured national stages as a speaker and musician with John Butler, and has worked in film and television for the last ten years. He lives with his wife and three children on Nyul Nyul Country in Beagle Bay community.
Professor Wen Tiejun (China) is a renowned expert on sustainable social-economic development and rural issues, with a particular focus on rural-urban integration. He has consulted with government departments in China since the 1980s, and has conducted overseas research with the World Bank, the EU, and the UN. He is also a dean in one of the top 10 universities in China. He is a recipient of the Chinese State Council’s Award for Outstanding Contribution in 1998, the China Central TV Annual Economic Talent Award in 2003, the Beijing Municipal Government Award for Outstanding Study Outcomes in both 2010 and 2012, and the Ministry of Education Award for Outstanding Contributions to Social Science Studies in 2015.
Mika Tsutsumi (Japan) is an investigative journalist. She began her career in journalism after working at the United Nations, Amnesty International, and Wall Street, and after experiencing the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City. She has written on a wide range of topics, including economics, health care, social welfare, education, energy, agriculture, and US politics. She is a recipient of the Kiyoshi Kuroda Journalist Prize from the Journalists Association of Japan. Her book USA: The Poverty Superpower won the Kodansha New Book Award’s Grand Prize, as well as the Japan Essayist Club Award, and became a national bestseller. Many of her books have also been translated and published overseas. Her latest book, Japan is for Sale, has also become a best-seller, with ~200,000 copies sold.
Manish Jain (India) is a leading voice for the regeneration of diverse local knowledge systems, cultural imaginations, and the deschooling of our lives. He is the Co-Founder and coordinator of the Udaipur-based Shikshantar: The Peoples’ Institute for Rethinking Education and Development, and the co-founder of some of the most innovative educational experiments in the world: Swaraj University, the Jail University, the Creativity Adda, the Learning Societies Unconference, the Walkouts-Walkon network, Udaipur as a Learning City, and the Families Learning Together network. He recently helped to launch the global Ecoversities Network. Manish is the editor of several books on learning societies, unlearning, gift culture, community media, and tools for deep dialogue. Read more about Manish here.
Erfan Daliri (Australia) is an author, activist and social change consultant with over a decade of experience across participatory community development, youth empowerment, refugee and settlement services, community engagement and human rights advocacy. He is the founding director of Newkind Social Justice Conference, an advisor to Amnesty International Australia, and is currently completing his Masters in Communication for Social Change. Erfan is particularly passionate about working with community organisations and empowering people from diverse communities to affect social change while working towards gender equality, environmental protection and sustainability, social harmony and economic justice. His latest book, Raising Humanity, discusses the underlying causes of inequality and socio-economic injustice. It is a discourse on our ecology and our economy, resilience and community, and what it takes to be a changemaker.
Dr. George Catsi (Australia) is the President of Petersham Bowling Club. He led a volunteer team that revived the once-failed club by removing poker machines and turning it into a thriving arts, music, and community hub. George is a national award-winning performance writer, performer, comic, academic, and producer. He is a national AWGIE winner and winner of the Kit Denton Fellowship for courage & excellence in performance writing for his satirical evangelical comedy I Want to Be Slim. He has written and performed his comedic memoir show Am I Who I Say I Am? across 3 seasons, and he co-created, wrote and performed in the satirical comedy trio Gods Cowboys that toured extensively in Australia. As an academic he teaches at UTS in Design Thinking and Communications. He has presented extensively on topics including: Creativity; Perceptions of Evil and Human Wickedness; Satire; and National Identity.
Mandy Nolan (Australia) will MC the ‘Going Local’ festival. A stand-up comedian for well over 28 years, and with a background in journalism, Mandy has performed at the South Pacific Conference for Women Parliamentarians, chaired a panel on GDP and Economic Growth at the Brisbane Ideas Festival, and headlined the Melbourne International Comedy Festival Roadshow. She is an event facilitator and panel chair at the Byron Writers Festival each year. She has worked with QLD Health two years running, delivering ‘Funny in the Head’ – a comedy performance by people with lived experience of mental health issues, which reframes social stigma and stereotypes. She also developed Stand Up for Dementia – a nationally recognized therapeutic program for people with dementia, with results published in Dementia, a peer reviewed international medical journal. A published author of four books, Mandy is also a regular contributor to Mamamia and is the host of their latest 8-part podcast for Westpac, ‘The Split’.
Join Happy Spaces for an eight-day Economics of Happiness Pilgrimage amongst the abundant coastal and hinterland landscapes and communities of the Byron Bay and Northern Rivers area. The journey will be anchored in the context of the Economics of Happiness conference’s program and principles.