Great Lakes Commons: Commons-based stewardship and becoming a great ancestor

The Great Lakes are great in every sense of the word. Bordering the U.S. and Canada, and spanning over 1,200 kilometers (750 miles) east to west, these large inland seas are the largest surface freshwater system in the world. They contain over 20 percent of the Earth’s supply of fresh water. Over 30 million people …

Isle of Gigha Heritage Trust – Reshaping Land Ownership in Scotland

How can communities reclaim control over their shared challenges? In March 2002, Gigha islanders managed, with help from grants and loans from the National Lottery and Highlands and Islands Enterprise, to purchase the island from its absentee landlord for £4 million.  The island is now owned through a development trust called the Isle of Gigha Heritage Trust. …

Eigg Heritage Trust – Reshaping Land Ownership in Scotland

How can people organise to gain control of the place in which they live? The Scottish Ilse of Eigg replaced its historic semi-feudal system of land ownership, in which residents were tenants of an absentee laird (a large landowner) with a new model community based ownership. Eigg is one of the Scottish Inner Hebrides.  In 1997, the island was bought from its absentee landlord for …

Foundation for Ecological Security

Is improving management of ecological commons a key pathway out of poverty? Foundation for Ecological Security is an Indian NGO that works to reduce poverty by helping communities organise to restore their ecosystems and enhance their livelihoods.  The Foundation for Ecological security combines ecological restoration, a focus on building commons and community institutions, and sustainable rural livelihoods.  They focus on entire landscapes and work with all the inter-related …