The 2022 Next System Speakers Series

Jessica Gordon Nembhard headlines a series featuring Jeremy Brecher, Joe Guinan, Yvonne Yen Liu, and Melissa Scanlan

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

Joe Guinan, Headshot

Joe Guinan

Vice President of Strategy and Programs at The Democracy Collaborative

His focus is on political economy and economic system change, and he is co-author (with Martin O’Neill) of The Case for Community Wealth Building (Polity, 2020) and (with Christine Berry) of People Get Ready! Preparing for a Corbyn Government (O/R Books, 2019), which was named one of The Guardian’s best politics books of the year.

A former journalist, he was previously a program director at the Aspen Institute, a fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States, and a consultant to the William & Flora Hewlett Foundation. Born in England with dual Irish and British citizenship, he grew up in British labor movement circles and was educated at Balliol College, Oxford.

He was the executive director of the Next System Project at The Democracy Collaborative when it was launched in 2016. He writes regularly for an array of progressive outlets, is a frequently cited expert on the new economics in major news media, serves on several nonprofit boards, and is a commissioning editor of the journal Renewal. He lives in Washington, D.C.

Joe Guinan's "The Political Economy of the Next System" was delivered on Tuesday, March 1, 2022 in Van Metre Hall on the Mason Square campus.

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Yvonne Yen Liu, HeadshotYvonne Yen Liu

"The Municipalist Moment"

Yvonne Yen Liu is co-founder of the Solidarity Research Center, a worker self-directed nonprofit that develops solidarity economies for using data science, story-based strategy, and action research, working at the intersection of racial justice and solidarity economies.

The Solidarity Research Center is engaged with a number of projects, including the Asian American Solidarity Economies, Research Justice Collective, the Solidarity Economy Study Group, and Solidarity Los Angeles. Yen Liu joins us to discuss a new project, The Municipalism Learning Series

In 1992, four white police officers were acquitted in the beating of a Black man named Rodney King. The incident touched a nerve in the Los Angeles, lighting a powder keg of long-held disappointment of Black and Latinx communities in city institutions purporting to serve the people. In the years that followed, autonomous organizations emerged at the frontlines of racial capitalism, from tenant unions and solidarity networks to resistance movements led by the unhoused.

Thirty years later, over a hundred socialists have been elected to the city’s neighborhood councils, vowing to defund the police and expand social housing. For Yen Liu, therefore, this is "The Municipalist Moment." The movement to gain democratic control of cities and towns is ascendant from Los Angeles to Barcelona to Jackson, Mississippi. People are crafting municipalist platforms, reclaiming the right to the city, and self-organizing as rebel cities.

Liu will be speaking online on Tuesday, April 12, 2022 at 10:30 am (EDT).

To register, please visit Liu's event page.

Thursday, April 14, 2022

Melissa K Scanlan, Headshot

Melissa K. Scanlan

Author of Prosperity in the Fossil-Free Economy: Cooperatives and the Design of Sustainable Businesses

Melissa K. Scanlan holds the Lynde B. Uihlein Endowed Chair in Water Policy and directs the Center for Water Policy at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee's School of Freshwater Sciences. She is a Professor in the School of Freshwater Sciences and affiliated faculty at the University of Wisconsin's Law School. 

Scanlan is the founder of a variety of enterprises in the social economy. Infused with clear vision and longevity, she raised millions of dollars to capitalize these enterprises and designed their governance documents, establishing the mission, purpose, and day to day direction.

She brings a deep understanding of starting and stewarding enterprises to her scholarly work. The U.S. State Department awarded her a Fulbright Senior Scholar position in Spain in 2019 to pursue research about Spanish cooperatives that are sustainability leaders. This resulted in her book, Prosperity in the Fossil-Free Economy: Cooperatives and the Design of Sustainable Businesses, which compares Spanish and U.S. cooperatives to reveal insights about legal design for the triple bottom line.

Scanlan will be speaking online on Thursday, April 14, 2022 at 10:30 am (EDT).

To register, please visit Scanlan's event page.

Saturday, April 23, 2022

Jessica Gordon Nembhard, Headshot

Keynote: Dr. Jessica Gordon-Nembhard

Author of Collective Courage: A History of African American Cooperative Economic Thought and Practice

Jessica Gordon-Nembhard is Professor of Community Justice and Social Economic Development in the Department of Africana Studies at the City University of New York’s John Jay College. Her research focuses include cooperative economics, community economic development and community-based asset building, racial wealth inequality, solidarity economics, Black Political Economy, and community-based approaches to justice.

Dr. Gordon-Nembhard is the author Collective Courage: A History of African American Cooperative Economic Thought and Practice as well as co-editor with Ngina Chiteji of Wealth Accumulation and Communities of Color.

She’s a member of the National Cooperative Business Association’s Cooperative Economics Council; the International Co-operative Alliance Committee on Co-operative Research; a Faculty Fellow and Mentor with the Institute for the Study of Employee Ownership and Profit Sharing at Rutgers University School of Management and Labor Relations; and an affiliate scholar with the Centre for the Study of Co-operatives at the University of Saskatchewan.

Dr. Gordon-Nembhard will serve as Democratizing NOVA's keynote speaker on Saturday, April 23, 2022.

To register, please visit Dr. Gordon-Nembhard's event page.

Thursday, April 28, 2022

Jeremy BrecherJeremy Brecher

Author of Common Preservation: In a Time of Mutual Destruction

As world leaders eschew cooperation to address climate change, nuclear proliferation, economic meltdown, and other threats to our survival, more and more people experience a pervasive sense of dread and despair. Is there anything we can do? What can put us on the course from mutual destruction to common preservation? In the past, social movements have sometimes made rapid and unexpected changes that countered apparently incurable social problems. Jeremy Brecher presents scores of historical examples of people who changed history by adopting strategies of common preservation, showing what we can we learn from past social movements to better confront today’s global threats of climate change, war, and economic chaos.

In Common Preservation, Brecher shares his experiences and what he has learned that can help ward off mutual destruction and provides a unique heuristic—a tool kit for thinkers and activists—to understand and create new forms of common preservation.

Brecher will be speaking online on Thursday, April 14, 2022 at 10:30 am (EDT).

To register, please visit Brecher's event page.