From June 25th to July 1st, the first World Social Forum on Transformative Economies (WSFTE) will take place. This will be a virtual meeting that seeks to articulate a common agenda for transformative economies at a key moment in the questioning of the current economic model.

The first World Social Forum on Transforming Economies (WSFTE) will take place on June 25th. The aim of this meeting is to bring together social movements and initiatives that share the desire to put people and the environment at the centre of the economy and to end the economy based on extraction, growth, competitiveness and the market. The aim is to generate a framework of confluence of those economies that struggle to move towards resilient and collaborative societies, to build and strengthen alliances and joint strategic actions.

Since the first days of the pandemic, we have clearly seen the shortcomings of the pre-COVID-19 world in issues as essential and diverse as access to housing, food, health care, unemployment benefits, care for vulnerable groups and other essential areas of life that are not being adequately covered in the current model and for which Transforming Economies have alternative and real proposals.

This process of confluence around the WSFTE, promoted by dozens of organizations from all over the world, has been forging for two years, being remarkable in this process the First International Meeting, which took place in Barcelona in April 2019. This meeting explored the terrain of each of the transformative economies that were meeting (social and solidarity economy, feminist economies, agro-ecological movement and for food sovereignty and the movement for the commons) and the first links and confluences were established, agreeing on common strategic lines to include new agents and realities, such as those of the climate justice movement or migrant groups, and to provide a system of governance and methodologies to guarantee the autonomy of the process, part of the DNA of transformative economies.

From this common base, we now conclude a year of work and articulation at the global level that has had to adapt to a global pandemic scenario. We’ve moved to a virtual format and we’ve included the forecasts from the difficult economic situation of the post-Covid-19 scenario and the alternatives to it from a transformative point of view.

Within this framework, the Forum has a broad and rich programme, the opening of which will feature leading figures from these movements worldwide, such as Mihel Bauwens, director of the P2P Foundation and of the CommonsTransition; Marta Guadalupe Rivera Ferre, director of the Cathedra of Agroecology and Food Systems of the VIC-UCC University and member of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC); Euclides Mance, one of the main theorists of the solidarity economy and the Economy of Liberation in Latin America and co-founder of the Institute of Philosophy of Liberation and the Solidarius network; Ashish Kotari, coordinator of the Vikalp Sangam forum (Confluence of Alternatives) and promoter of the World Tapestry of Alternatives; Geneviève Azam, French economist, environmental and anti-globalization activist within the organization Attac France and co-author of a “Manifesto of Coexistence”.

This event will be followed by a week of open tables, meetings, seminars and exhibition panels on various themes and approaches, but with a common scenario: to promote a radical transformation of economic and social organisation with the common objective of facing up to the present and future crises caused by the current socio-economic system, from a more territorialised perspective, which puts life at the centre, with a concern for social justice and ecological vigilance supported by a renewed democracy.

This work will be continued with a view to a second celebration of the WSFTE2020 in October 2020, a meeting which, in addition to the virtual component, could be in person if the situation allows it, and which thus aims to converge with the celebration of the FESC (Solidarity Economy Fair of Catalonia) which in recent years has brought some 15,000 people to Barcelona. In order to support these new works, the virtual tool will continue to be active, a reference space for continuing to nurture the process of articulation with the world.

Within the framework of the titanic task of social reconstruction that we have ahead of us when we come out of confinement, the WSMTE aspires to transform itself into a broader process that goes beyond the axes and transformative actions already contemplated and includes the impact of the civilizational crisis accelerated by the COVID-19 in the center of its reflection and proposal. The Transforming Economies around the world are thus pursuing a radical transformation of economic and social organization in order to definitively address the crises caused by the current socio-economic system. This economic model that seeks to put life at the center and that aspires to social justice, ecological vigilance and a renewed democracy, can only be achieved from a territorialized perspective, joining forces and intelligences, initiatives and ideas, audacity and wisdom, in a post-crisis context of the COVID-19 in which these proposals are more necessary than ever.