Social Economy Panels

Filmed during the conference “From the Ground Up” at the Canadian Centre for Architecture in Montréal, 12-13-14 avril 2019.

Panel “Democratic Economies & the Commons”


To transition to a new economy that is both just and sustainable, we will need innovation at the local level as well as building alliances of support at the global level.

With Susan Witt (Global Land Commons Alliance and Schumacher Center for a New Economics) and Dru Oja Ojay (SEIZE, Transition NDG, and DemocracyXChange).

Panel ” Beyond Growth: Alternative Forms of Economic Exchange”


Panel on the limits of today’s economic model and the founding principles of tomorrow’s economy with researchers and stakeholders involved in Quebec-based Local Exchange Trading Systems (LETS)

Yves-Marie Abraham, Associate Professor, HEC Montreal Economic Sociology
Luc Parent, President, L’Accorderie Hochelaga-Maisonneuve
Michel Gaudreault, Founder and President, Becs (Banque d’échanges communautaires de services)
André Ouellette, le Jeu (Jardin d’Échange Universel)

Panel “How do Coops Transform the Economy?”


We will be exploring the history of the cooperative movement, the different functions of the cooperative model, its presence in the world and in Quebec as well as its philosophical and practical pertinence in the anti-capitalist struggle.

Louise Constantin (Advisor to associative and political affairs, Federation of Housing cooperatives in Montreal (FECHIMM)), Erika Gaudreault (Réseau COOP, fédération des coopératives gérées par les travailleurs) et Jonathan Thisselmagan Schuld (researcher & philosopher)

Panel “Communities Transforming the Economy”


Keynote panel with Emily Kawano (USA), Yvon Poirier (QC), Athena Bernkopf (USA) and Anna Kruzynski (QC).

Emily Kawano (Massachusetts, USA) is the Co-Director of the Wellspring Cooperative Corporation, which is building a network of worker owned cooperatives in underserved communities in Springfield, Massachusetts. She is a co-founder and Board member of the United States Solidarity Economy Network, and served for several years on the RIPESS Board.

Yvon Poirier (Quebec City) has been involved in community economic development and local development for over 20 years and is a member of many associations and cooperatives. After working as a teacher and CSN activst, he has since been involved in local and international networks like the Canadian Community Economic Development Network (CCEDNET) and the Intercontinental Network for the Promotion of the Social Solidarity Economy (RIPESS).

Athena Bernkopf (East Harlem–El Barrio Community Land Trust, NYC, USA), is a cross-pollinator flexing at the intersections of healing justice, land sovereignty, and black and queer liberation. They have worked as a facilitator and organizer in cop watch, community safety training Watch; tenant rights and anti-displacement advocate at the Legal Aid Society; and is the project coordinator at the East Harlem–El Barrio Community Land Trust.

Anna Kruzynski is the director of the Community Economy Development program at Concordia University. For the past 20 years she has been involved in many different types of social movements: the student movement, health and feminist community organisations in Pointe-Saint-Charles (Montreal), anti-globalisation direct action, and busy work with neighbours and anarchist comrades to set-up local economic and political initiatives inspired by a post-capitalist policy.

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