Collapse Is Not a Bug, It Is a Feature

Seminar by Ugo Bardi, October 12, 2017

“It would be some consolation for the feebleness of our selves and our works if all thing should perish as slowly as they come into being; but as it is increases are of sluggish growth, but the way to ruin is rapid.” Lucius Anneaus Seneca (4 BCE-65 CE), Letters to Lucilius, n.91, 6 (translated by […]

Animal Rights : from Ethics to Politics

Seminar by Corine Pelluchon, June 16, 2017

Animalism is a philosophical, cultural as well as social movement made up of groups and individuals who share the belief that animals should be taken seriously. This presentation’s objective is to show that this movement has depth. Animalism is not only about adopting a certain lifestyle but is also a global project that aims for […]

Understanding the Bioregion as the Political Form of the ‘Milieu’

Seminar by Isabella Tomassi, May 19, 2017

The Italian territorialist school’s aim is to rehabilitate the ‘territory’. According to this school of thought the latter should be conceived of and dealt with as a ‘work of art’, that is to say, not as an inanimate, man-made object but as the product of exchanges – over the long run – between living things, […]

The Economy : a Process of Self-organized Criticality

Seminar by François Roddier, April 21st, 2017

Similarly to all living beings, human societies are dissipative structures. By deriving circles around a critical point the dissipative structure creates mechanical work. It alternates between abrupt phase transition and continuous phase transition. The state of the economy, like the metabolism of all living beings, may be described using Gibbs’s thermodynamic potential. Demand is associated […]

The Île-de France : a Resilient Bioregion by 2050?

Seminar by Agnès Sinaï, Benoît Thévard, Mireille Ferri and Pierre Serne, March 24th, 2017

Fossile fuels – which is the energy source characteristic of the Industrial Revolution – have significantly altered landscapes. The sociologist Zygmunt Bauman speaks of the “liquefaction” of territories, in which cities and countryside intermingle in undifferentiated areas. Material flows have taken over spaces that are administered by a “free-floating” sovereignty, faced with an unsure global […]

Heirs and Heiresses to Ecofeminism

Seminar by Emilie Hache, February 24th, 2017

The late 70s and early 80s are characterized by the development of anti-nuclear and peace movements in the United States. As a reaction to the Three Mile Island nuclear accident in March of 1979 and to the re-launching of military programs under Reagan’s administration some women’s movements organized actions such as the spectacular Women’s Pentagon Action […]

The Bioregions : the New Territories of Degrowth

Seminar by Julie Celnik, December 9th, 2016

Although the “degrowth movement” is still marginal in the United States, it shares values and principles with a diversity of environmental movements more prominent in the US, such as bioregionalism. The bioregionalist movement emerged in the 60s-70s in San Francisco, before expanding to the West Coast. Bioregionalism is a school of thought based on the […]

‘Milieu’, Robustness, Conviviality, Counter Environment, Optimization, Complexity

Seminar by Olivier Rey, November 18, 2016

The Limits to Growth report was published in 1972. It resulted from a study conducted by the Club of Rome – a think tank made up of scientists, economists, senior officials and industrialists. It warned that, if unimpeded, the development model embraced since the European Industrial Revolution would exceed the finite natural resources on which […]

Of the Acceleration of Algorithms

Seminar by Thierry Caminel, June 3rd, 2016

Autonomous cars without human drivers, “Go” (a strategy board game), robots taking over jobs previously held by workers: these innovations are all evidence of the acceleration of technological change, which progresses at a much faster rate than genetic evolution. The speed at which algorithms can make comparisons has increased for the benefit of Uber, Google […]

Medicine and Degrowth: Adversaries or Allies?

Seminar by Pietro Majno, May 20, 2016

Pietro Majno heads the hepatobiliary centers of Geneva’s teaching hospitals. He is specialized in liver transplants and a member of the Rassemblement des objecteurs de croissance (a group made up of growth objectors). He agreed to give this seminar on the apparent contradictions existing between his job as a doctor, which is very much dependent […]

Preserving our Societies in the Face of the Collapse

Seminar by Yves Cochet, April 22nd, 2016

After the collapse, will people still form societies, in the absence of governments? And, if so, how will they contain the violence internal to the group they will have formed? A substantial majority of human beings live in States, meaning a territory and population under the rule of a single political power able to define […]

Social Cohesion in Times of Prolonged Recession. Spain, Greece, Portugal.

Seminar of the 14th of February 2014 by Alice Canabate

The 2008 global economic and social crisis continues to be debated, reinterpreted and explained. For some, it can be seen as cyclical, structural or civilizational. For others, the disastrous effects of this global crisis are still amplified and not a single analyst seems to be able to propose solutions. The most vulnerable populations are at […]

Reduced Net Energy, the Final Frontier of the Anthropocene

Seminar of the 13th of December 2013 by Benoît Thévard

Translation will soon be available

The Gaia Hypothesis

Seminar of the 18th of October 2013 by Ghislain Nicaise

Translation will soon be available

Should the concept of resilience be saved?

Seminar of the 20th of September 2013 by Hugo Carton, Raphaël Stevens & Pablo Servigne

Today, the concept of resilience is everywhere. Its success possibly stems from the fact that it can be used in a context of choc, trauma, disturbance… or “crisis”. But can this concept really be applied to societies? Can we truly measure resilience? Could it help us understand the dynamics of a potential civilizational collapse and […]

Anthropocene: A Prehistory

Seminar of the 21th June 2013 by Kim Pasche & Vincent Pierré

Translation will soon be available

Degrowth of Money, Currencies of Degrowth

Seminar of the 24th of May 2013 by Michel Lepesant

Translation will soon be available

The Road Towards an Oil Free Agriculture

Seminar of the 12th of April 2013 by Pablo Servigne

We have passed the global peak of conventional fossil fuel production. Numerous other non-renewable resources will follow a similar decline. Hence, it seems very possible that within a few years, we will witness the collapse of industrial food systems. How should we organise a transition towards more resilient food systems that are completely disconnected from […]

The Politics of Catastrophe

Seminar of the 15th of March 2013 by Luc Semal

During the 2000’s decade, two social movements, the degrowth movement in France and Transition Towns in the United- Kingdom, have contributed, both in parallel, to a renewal of the green political landscape. The catastrophist dimension of these two movements, understood as a form of political thought based on the anticipation of major ecological shifts (peak […]

Can the Industry Get Out of Planned Obsolescence

Seminar of the 15th of February 2013 by Corinne Coughanowr

Translation will soon be available

Remake the City, Take Back the Commons

Seminar of the 18th of January 2013 by Christophe Laurens

Translation will soon be available

The Permacultural Revolution

Seminar of the 14th of December 2012

Permaculture is not simply a different way of gardening, but a true vision of post-industrial society in which we have to relearn how to live with less energy and in a more local and down to earth manner. It gives a certain pace to finitude and a plan for a convivial energetic descent, as well […]

Uncrash Program

Seminar of the 23th of November 2012 by Marc Zischka

Translation will soon be available

Which History for the Anthropocene?

Seminar of the 26 of October 2012 by Christophe Bonneuil

Translation will soon be available

Phase Transition: Three World Models

Seminar of the 28th of September 2012 by Yves Cochet

“We cannot win against entropy, but we must act as if we could”, Marc-Aurèle, (Pensées pour moi-même, p.170) and Ugo Bardi (conference, 4th of Mai 2011). It is vain to claim that we can describe the future as precisely as we can the past. Nevertheless, one of the key concerns of economic and political actors […]

Personal Carbon Allowances, Rationing and Responsibility

Seminar of the 15th of June 2012 by Mathilde Szuba

“In 1871 Paris was under siege, in a final effort to resist the enemy what did the people ask for? Rationing!” Pierre Kropotkine, 1887. Degrowth thinkers tend to recognize a central thesis in which the finite quantity of natural resources automatically creates a limit to growth. This idea of material finitude can also be found in […]

The Anthropocene: Historical and Scientific Context

Seminar of the 11th of May 2012 by Jacques Grinevald

Translation will soon be available

The Red Queen Syndrome

Seminar of the 6th of April 2012 by François Roddier

Translation will soon be available

The Terra Vitae Project: Returning to the Land and Societies of the Future

Seminar of the 9th of March 2012 by Jérôme Déhondt

Translation will soon be available

Biotopes of Recovery

Seminar of the 10th of February 2012 by Vin­cent Pierré

Translation will soon be available

Aspects of Resilience in After-Oil Societies

Seminar of the 20th of january 2012 by Benoît Thévard

Translation will soon be available Read it in french

The Impossible Decoupling Between Energy Consumption and Economic Growth

Seminar of the 25th of November 2011 by Thierry Caminel

Translation will soon be available

Saving the Commons

Seminar of the 14th of October 2011 by Alice Le Roy

Translation will soon be available

The Collapse: Catabolic or Catastrophic?

Seminar of the 27th of May 2011 by Yves Cochet

Let us call “the collapse” of contemporary globalised society the process at the end of which basic needs (water, food, housing, clothing, energy, mobility, and security) are no longer provided to a majority of the population by state-controlled services.