Good news: This summer, the International Degrowth Conference in Budapest will discuss solutions for ecological sustainability and social equity. Better news: The road there is already paved with concrete action on the local level. Let’s experience these pioneer projects first-hand and reflect, connect and share them. Not only at the conference, but with the people we meet along the way – because we’re hitchhiking! The result? A map of a sustainable Europe. And great road trip stories to share.
If everyone on the planet lived like an average EU-citizen, humanity would need 2.6 Earths to sustain our demand on nature. At the same time many Europeans experience a failure of the current economic model to provide a dignified existence in society. But the ‘other’ Europe exists: Citizens everywhere are engaged in improving the world around them and push for a transformation towards a sustainable and socially just Europe. Let’s experience, map and share their stories and amplify their voices!
We are aiming for more awareness for the issues of ecological sustainability and social equity in Europe: through increased participation at the conference, first-hand experience of alternatives on the way there, stronger ties between the respective local projects and a European map of practical examples of sustainability.
In addition, travelling by hitchhiking addresses the wider issues of mobility in Europe and inter-cultural exchange.
The plan is to build an interactive website, where projects that think and practise alternative styles of economy can register and will be connected with interested visitors in the run-up to the 2016 Degrowth Conference. It will also include an app for hitchhikers to connect and share their stories as they go. Through our networks we will reach out in both directions, accompanied by a social media and press campaign. Once the "stream towards degrowth" has started, we will collect stories and display them before (through social media) and during the conference. At the conference we will share experiences and lessons learnt with hitchhikers and projects in the framework of a workshop, evaluate, continue the mapping process and plan the way ahead.
We are doing it for people interested in an environmentally-friendly and socially-just Europe, no matter if they join the conference or not. We are doing it for people that like to learn along the way, no matter if they are hitchhikers or not. (But we strongly encourage hitchhiking for experiencing real European exchange and because it’s eco-friendly.) Last, but not least, we would like to connect and amplify local alternative voices across the continent and inspire followers.
The project walks the tightrope between a conference setting and a hitchhiking adventure, a tangible experience and an online platform, lasting person-to-person contacts and a big network of initiatives. And tightropes are exciting!
In addition, the hitchhiking element opens the dialogue to individuals that don’t necessarily deal with the aims of this project on a daily basis.
Funding requested from Advocate Europe
10.000 Euros project concept and coordination 10.000 Euros communications 20.000 Euros website design and development 1.000 Euros travel costs
First, this idea space is amazing! So much inspiration and so many engaged people! We’d be happy to hear what you like / dislike about our proposal. And if you are (or know) a person / project / organisation that should, could or would be part of the experience, let us know! (And let them know!)