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Ecovillages: New Frontiers for Sustainability (Schumacher Briefings) Paperback – 23 Jun 2006


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Product details

  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Green Books (23 Jun. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1903998778
  • ISBN-13: 978-1903998779
  • Product Dimensions: 14.7 x 0.5 x 21.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 176,151 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

About the Author

Jonathan Dawson is Executive Secretary of Global Ecovillage Network (GEN) Europe, and a sustainability educator at the Findhorn Foundation, Scotland, where he lives.

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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Mr. J. DAVIES-COATES on 27 Oct. 2008
Format: Paperback
This is a really fantastic and inspiring book. Great insights into the Ecovillage movement and the various different economic models and collective investment stuff they are trying out. Highly recommended.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J. Mcshane on 15 Aug. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Nice book.
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Amazon.com: 3 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
AN EXCELLENT BRIEF INTRODUCTION TO THE SUBJECT 24 July 2012
By Steven H Propp - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Jonathan Dawson wrote in the Preface to this 2006 book, "This short book is an attempt to provide an overview of the ecovillage movement and to gauge its actual and potential contribution to the remaking of a more sane, just, equitable and sustainable world. Historical perspective is always of value, especially at moments of crisis like the present. Consqeuently, I have chosen to begin by attempting to take the long view, locating modern ecovillages within an appropriate historical and cultural context."

He defines an ecovillage as "a peaceful, socially just, sustainable community." (Pg. 9) Or, "Private citizens' initiatives in which the communitarian impulse is of central importance, that are seeking to win back some measure of control over community resources; that have a strong shared values base... and that act as centres of research, demonstration and (in most cases) training." (Pg. 36)

He contrasts ecovillages with cohousing communities: "The community division of life in ecovillages is stronger than in cohousing projects: residents have less private space, many more members work within the community... and a good number have some element of income-sharing or other ways of redistributing economic wealth among the members. Critically, ecovillages tend to be communities of strongly shared values." (Pg. 23) Later, he notes, "The ecovillage is, perhaps above all else, a response to the alienation and solitude of the modern condition... Communities... are not only happier; they also tread more lightly on the Earth." (Pg. 34)

He cautions, however, that there has recently been "a tightening of the regulatory framework in such a way as to make ecovillages, and other efforts at citizen-led community development, significantly more difficult." (Pg. 68)

While not an "in-depth" treatment, this book is a very useful orientation to ecovillages, and many of the issues concerning them.
rich study of a diverse topic 12 May 2012
By superjdt - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I particularly appreciate the deep study of this tradition from diverse roots to the possibilities for community and sustainable living today. The case studies are great.
8 of 17 people found the following review helpful
Developing a Village Model that Holds Hope 6 Dec. 2006
By John Matlock - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I don't think it is big enough yet to call it a trend, but there is certainly a movement, an interest of mostly isolated people to live with less of an impact on our society. We see this in the occassional solar powered house, the growth of the self-sustaining small (or even tiny) farms, the commune system that began to be set up in years past.

All of these, of course, had problems associated with them. The solar house may well not, probably doesn't meet building codes, so they may have to be built outside a cities limits, they are difficult to sell, difficult to find someone who will issue a mortgage on them.

The tiny farm takes an awful lot of work, more than most people want to do. And the cost of the food is expensive in terms of working at a real job and buying at the supermarket.

Communes work only when everyone get along with each other. But soon people begin to feel that they do more than their fair share.

The next logical step is to put together a small village. Perhaps a dozen famlies, perhaps 20 or 30. Here you begin to get the small town mentality that is so famous in literature. This book talks about local communities that have come together with shared goals. It offers a lot of the advantages of the traditional small village, with a vision that transcends and enhances the individual goals of the residents.
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