Michael Beuwens and Vasilis Kostakis, 12 January 2017
[An important contribution to a “macro” vision for degrowth?]
What is P2P? And why is it important in building a commons-centric future? These are the questions we try to answer, by tying together four of its aspects:
- P2P is a type of social relations in human networks;
- P2P is also a technological infrastructure that makes the generalization and scaling up of such relations possible;
- P2P thus enables a new mode of production and exchange;
- P2P creates the potential for a transition to an economy that can be generative towards people and nature.
We believe that these four aspects will profoundly change human society. P2P ideally describes systems in which any human being can contribute to the creation and maintenance of a shared resource, while benefiting from it. There is an enormous variety of such systems: from the free encyclopedia Wikipedia to free/open-software projects, to open design and hardware communities, to relocalization initiatives and community currencies.