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Conversations in Conflict Studies

341 Eggers Hall

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Isidor Walliman, PARCC Visiting Scholar, Professor of Sociology, Economics and Social Policy, School of Social Work, University of Applied Sciences Northwest Switzerland, Basel. Utopias usually are based on much idealism and commitment. In one way or another, they aim to transform the status quo to signal directions of change and to prepare for significantly new social and economic ways of life. Real Utopias could be seen as "sociotopes" - in analogy to "biotopes" that signal and prepare alternatives to a world of biological monocultures. Yet, is idealism and commitment enough to build Real Utopias? What might be some criteria and methods for building Real Utopias? Based on the Social Economy Basel as an example, Professor Wallimann will illustrate some of the tenets and organizational methods that have been the foundation of this particular Real Utopia project. In so doing, he will address such things as the role of new social movements, resource based mobilization, popular culture and organization, centralization and decentralization, etc. The Social Economy Basel real utopia project is in its 18th year. Its mission is to arrive at local, social and environmental sustainability.

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