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Becoming a global citizen in a doughnut economy

In today’s world, we still have a long way to go when it comes to an economy that takes the limits of the earth into account. This lifemap scenario portrays people as enterprising citizens and resource-consuming households. One’s own current reality is depicted on the poster. The Doughnut Economics model is introduced with the question: How can I create my own doughnut-aligned strategy? The poster is completed and a discovery process follows. This scenario is intended to shed light on the individual perspective on the economy. Its process provides a realistic experience. People get involved, the outcomes are felt as their own.


The image shows the lifemap building blocks

A lifemap scenario and a workshop programme for a self-appointed group of four. A group coordinator receives the lifemap package for the group, containing the building blocks shown in the image for each member: the compass poster, citizen stickers which are a variant of the city stickers, and a selection of the transformation symbols shown below, on a sticker sheet strip.

During the workshop symbols are added to highlight the big story

The big story that is revealed in this lifemap scenario is about what it means to become a global citizen in a doughnut economy. It starts by putting on the hats of: household and citizen. As an affirmation of the discovery process with the doughnut model, the doughnut and transformation symbols are added. To set a course for the future, the symbol of the heart with four hands stands for guidance by the Master Code of Care: taking care of self, others, place and planet. The symbol of the world shows a vision of a thriving world ecology.

World ecology

The overarching goal for this lifemap scenario

The overarching goal for this lifemap scenario is to help create a vocabulary for the individual perspective into Doughnut Economics.

For conscious citizens, to co-create a new economy

Decades of climate change and decline of nature have led to a future of decades characterised by decline rather than progress. The life conditions on earth are deteriorating. All ecoregions, countries, people and parties need to find their own perspective, get involved and take a role. The same applies to individuals. As a start we need to acknowledge what we know to be true and become familiar with the possible areas of impact. Greening our places and bringing sustainability into practice is a journey rather than a set of measures.

A method for individuals to relate to the world situation. Many people put off the moment to really dive into the current world situation, holding everything at a distance. More and more detailed information is becoming available, however, such that at country level government, politicians and organisations can start to prepare for the changes that could be coming. In this lifemap scenario the model of Doughnut Economics is used as a method for individuals to relate to the world situation. The relationship is made concrete by taking on the role of the citizen with his or her household, and it is made personal by translating the model to the individual level, even to the level of everyday life.

Developing our own view on the world situation, using the doughnut model. The doughnut model includes the just and safe space for humanity as well as the reality of the planet’s ecological ceiling. Ecology is a term that is widely used, although often incorrectly, which creates a false sense of comfort and hides the fact, that only a very small percentage of the people really know what it is about. As maker of lifemaps I have a degree in Biology and still I am fully aware of how little I know in this area. So part of this scenario has to do with discovering our blind spots and gaining new knowledge. We will get acquainted with what the doughnut model calls: the overshoot areas, but also reflect about the importance of caring for our places and implementing commons. We conclude by creating our own view on the overshoot themes, because this is necessary to open up ways to implement what they mean in our lives.

What does creating a personal strategy mean? Before answering this question it is important to realise, that all of us will need to make changes in our lives, especially when we are well-to-do and living in countries with big economies. Sustainability is a key word in this scenario. Currently discussions about sustainability often go along the lines of: shall I do this or will I stop doing that? But when we keep thinking at the level of measures, our preparations for the future will fall short. A strategy is an integrated way of behaving, choosing and acting for the longer term. Creating a personal strategy means: creating a vision which combines who you are, your priorities, and your contribution in the world –  WHAT – and determining your priorities and principles which will help you find direction – HOW. In the workshop programme for this scenario there are several rounds of choosing stickers and filling in the poster. When the poster is completed, it shows all elements to create a strategy with.

Workshop programme summary

A programme for a group of four people, which will take 3 to 5 hours, depending on what the group wants in terms of elaboration and exchange. Since new knowledge will be introduced and people will be asked to play a role, they do not normally play, spreading it over several days (weeks) is offered as a possibility. During the various rounds of mapping and exhange a personal strategy will be built on the poster, starting with the current situation, adding new found insight, and including this in projecting a desired situation for the future. In this lifemap scenario exchange does not mean having a dialogue, it means listening to each other and supporting and empowering each other in the creation of a strategy. The outcomes of the programme will be at the level of the individual, such as: getting to know and work with the Doughnut Economics model, self-reflection about the role as a citizen and making explicit the role of the household and its impact on the environment – all at a conceptual level, but based on reality.

Personal safety and privacy

How the built-in lifemap process faciliates a safe environment for sharing and how personal information is protected during the workshop and in the presentation of the harvest will be discussed in advance.

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