Sun. Apr 14th, 2024




TLDR:

  • High-tech solutions like “green growth” and “ecomodernism” may exacerbate issues such as resource extraction and environmental degradation.
  • Alternative production frameworks, such as cosmolocal production, prioritize social and ecological sustainability over profit motives.

In the article “What technology for degrowth?” by Vasilis Kostakis, the author explores the intersection of technology, environmental degradation, and wealth inequality. The piece critiques the reliance on high-tech solutions to address ecological crises and advocates for an alternative production framework centered around the commons. Kostakis introduces the concept of cosmolocal production, which aims to connect local communities through digital communication networks to minimize material and energy footprints.

Through examples such as local manufacturing technologies and open-source agricultural machinery development, the article showcases how cosmolocal production can reduce reliance on global value chains and foster local autonomy. Despite potential pitfalls, such as energy-intensive infrastructures like the Internet, cosmolocal production holds the potential to drive genuine institutional and social change amid an existential threat.

Kostakis highlights various initiatives in Greece, Bhutan, and Estonia that embody the principles of cosmolocal production and have demonstrated a growing influence on learning, localizing production, and fostering community development. The article concludes by presenting these cosmolocal endeavors as the early stirrings of experimental ventures that could lead to a transformative shift in production approaches.