"Ecovillages Around the World:
Lessons for Sustainable Community "
with author Karen Litfin
Thursday, February 13, FREE
J oin author Karin Litfin as she shares her newly published book "Ecovillages: Lessons for Sustainable Community", in an evening talk on Thursday, February 13, describing her experiences traveling and visiting Ecovillages around the world.
In a world of dwindling natural resources and mounting environmental crisis, who is devising ways of living that will work for the long haul? And how can we, as individuals, make a difference?
To answer these fundamental questions, Professor Karen Litfin embarked upon a journey to many of the world’s ecovillages – intentional communities at the cutting-edge of sustainable living. From rural to urban, high tech to low tech, spiritual to secular, she discovered an under-the-radar global movement making positive and radical changes from the ground up.
Not only is another world possible, it is already being born in small pockets the world over. These micro-societies, however, are small and time is short. Fortunately – as Litfin persuasively argues – their successes can be applied to existing social structures, from the local to the global scale, providing sustainable ways of living for generations to come.
WHAT IS AN ECOVILLAGE? The Global Ecovillage Network defines an ecovillage as an intentional or traditional community using local participatory processes to holistically integrate ecological, economic, social, and cultural dimensions of sustainability in order to regenerate social and natural environments. Because any group can call itself an ecovillage, the term has been adopted by entities ranging from student coops to suburban housing developments. In order to have an authentic experience of ecovillage life, Karen chose to visit larger, more established communities belonging to the Global Ecovillage Network. Karen also selected for diversity in order to experience the full range of ecovillage culture: rural, urban and suburban; rich and poor; secular and spiritual. Starting with Earthhaven on the east coast of the US, Karen worked her way around the world via Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia, concluding my journey in Los Angeles nine months later.
Karen wrote about the following Ecovillages in her book
Auroville India, Colufif A Senegal , Crystal Waters Australia, Damanhur Italy, Earthaven North Carolina USA, EV-Ithaca New York USA ,Findhorn Scotland, Konohana Japan, Los Angeles EV California USA, Sarvodaya Sri Lanka, Sieben Linden Germany, Svanholm Denmark, UFA-Fabrik Germany, Zegg Germany
Karen Litfin is a professor of political science and environmental studies at the University of Washington. She grew up in Pittsburgh and Baltimore, received a B.A. and M.A. from University of Maryland, and then a Ph.D. from UCLA. Karen is a mother, an introspective activist, an avid bicyclist and hiker, and a second-rate gardener. In her research and teaching, Karen takes a “person/planet politics” approach, which entails integrating the intellectual, emotional, practical and contemplative dimensions of sustainability.
Karen’s first two books were Ozone Discourses: Science and Politics in Global Environmental Cooperation (Columbia University Press, 1994) and The Greening of Sovereignty in World Politics (MIT Press, 1998).