Note — Jun 07, 2020

Universal Basic Everything

Tessy Britton on their work in the London borough of Barking and Dagenham over the last few years, exploring commons thinking, Raworth’s doughnut framework, micro-infrastructures, and a platform co-operative at neighbourhood scale. Adjacent to Fab City thinking but (it seems to me) much more focused on a small community, inclusion, and commons first. Pay attention to the contrast Britton makes between large universal services (healthcare for ex.), and the more bottom up “universal basic infrastructures for peer-to-peer participation.” Thinking of an economy of layers, instead of one of segments is also intriguing.

This framework highlights how our economies operate right now, not meeting basic human needs, while at the same time overshooting the nine ecological ceilings. […]

[T]he creation of essentials might fit into the doughnut framework — creating more layers to include co-created, open source, simple, circular products and services. […]

Open source and creative commons moves us significantly in the right direction. From open sharing of ideas we can start to think of ideas, services, systems, products and activities which might be essential or basic for sustaining life within the ecological ceiling, whilst also re-inforcing social foundations. […]

We are currently working on building a platform co-operative for making simple circular products. Over the last 18 months we have worked with local residents to develop a set of ‘collaborative brands’. Several of these have been moving towards this idea of circular, simple, universal.

Adjacent → Sacred civics, Valuing what matters in cities.