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Marc Van Hummelen 's Profile
Marc Van Hummelen
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Joined:
20/08/2011
Last Updated:
11/10/2011
Location:
Waasmont, Belgium
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Web site:
www.villavanzelf.wordpress.com





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embracing local politics

Posted by Marc Van Hummelen about 10 years ago

or getting local politicians to embrace change

In order to bring change to a local community there has to exist a movement from the bottom up - many people who realise that there is need for change team up and develop new views and alternative techniques to solve problems. But there also has to exist a parallel movement from the top downward. Politicians need to realise that people want change, and must adjust their policy accordingly. But how, from the point of view of a transition group, do you involve politicians? They seem to speak a completely different language and seem to act on a different (slower) rhythm. I've been trying to get local councillors interested in our allotment gardens-project. In an attempt to present the project in a language that they can understand, I used the vocabulary of Sustainable Develoment, referring to the Earth Summit in Rio of 1992 and the local Agenda 21 resulting from that. In my text I compare the basic principles of sustainable development: the ecological, social and economic capital and the balance between them, and those of permaculture: care for earth, care for the people and care for a fair share. In this way I hope to convince them that by supporting our project, and of course our transition initiative in general, they also take a firm step in the implementation of the local Agenda 21, as they are (more or less) required to do, our national government having ratified the '92 Convention on Climate Change. I haven't had word since I sent my presentation, I don't have high hopes for any kind of cooperation, I can but try and hope...

Comments (2)

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David Braden
David Braden : This is a key issue Marc. In Top Down Analysis and Bottom Up Action, you need the "authority" to first, not interfere and second make community resources available. However, I find the bigger problem with activists that believe that protest is the only path to change. I rather think in terms of engaging individuals in the new systems as the basis for political change.
Posted about 10 years ago

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Marc Van Hummelen
Marc Van Hummelen : I appreciate your comment, David. What protest is concerned: we reap what we sow. If you sow protest, more protest is what you're gonna get. Maybe the very first thing we must learn to understand is that the authorities are not the enemy. Only then can the real dialogue begin.
Posted about 10 years ago

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Location: Turku, Finland
Date: Aug 2011
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Forestry
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Location: Hoeilaart
Date: Aug 2001
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Date: Mar 2001
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