The crises we face seem insurmountable. What can we do about them?
We created this guide to help answer that question – sharing practical actions that don't just treat symptoms, but begin to address root causes.
What are those root causes? When we step back and look at the big picture, it becomes apparent that the globalizing economy is behind many of the serious social, environmental and economic problems we face: corporate rule and the erosion of democracy; job insecurity and an obscene wealth divide; societal, psychological and ecological breakdown; as well as a climate crisis that threatens all life on earth. These are among the impacts of economic globalization.
But there is another story to be told and a different future to be had. A future that doesn’t include land theft and colonization, or centralized power and corporate domination. A future in which Nature, justice and real democracy are nurtured, communities and local economies are rebuilt, and cultural and biological diversity thrive. These are among the benefits of economic localization – the most strategic path towards meaningful change.
While some of the actions in this guide involve resistance to further globalization, most aim at helping communities rebuild their local economies. When you engage in one or more of these actions, you'll be joining with millions of others around the world who are reconnecting to Nature and community – and you’ll be offering real hope for the future.
Can these actions really make a difference? We think so. Although they are often small and localized, taken together they are vital to recapturing economic democracy from global monopolies. They provide venues for connecting with like-minded others and strengthening the bonds of mutual interdependence. They provide opportunities to reject the monocultural ideas and practices that destroy the beauty and diversity of our planet. And they create "lifeboats" – living hubs of social health, human and ecological wellbeing, and economic resilience – to carry us through the turbulence of the coming decades.
On their own, individual and community-based actions cannot create systemic change. But together with political resistance and big picture awareness raising, they are a vital part of a global shift to a healthier and more abundant world. For this reason, we have included actions ranging from the individual to the political in this guide, as both kinds of action are mutually supportive and necessary.
Let’s take action now to support, renew and celebrate vibrant communities and thriving environments!
This guide was produced by Local Futures, a nonprofit organization working to renew ecological, social and spiritual well-being by promoting a systemic shift towards economic localization. We raise awareness of the root causes of our contemporary social, environmental, and economic crises, and advocate for rethinking our economic assumptions, rebuilding our local economies and communities, and restoring cultural and biological diversity. We believe that together we can strengthen our local economies and participate in a movement for change.
We created this guide to offer tangible ways to make a real difference today; equip individuals, communities and organizations to take action; and empower a localization movement on a global scale. If enough of us link hands, that movement can become strong enough to halt and reverse the corporate juggernaut.
See the Credits page for a list of people who have contributed to making this guide.
Want to learn more about globalization and localization? Check out the Learn and Take Action section of the Local Futures website, where you’ll find a wealth of materials to broaden and deepen your understanding, and to make your work in the world more effective.