SFU & City of Vancouver Cohosting Leadership and Innovation Summit

January 23, 2017

We are excited to announce an event that has been a long time in the making. On April 21-22, 2017, Simon Fraser University’s Community Economic Development Programs and the City of Vancouver are cohosting Hopeful Economics: Leadership and Innovation Summit.

Location: SFU Harbour Centre, 515 W. Hastings

Dates: April 21 – 22, 2017

Find out more and register: www.hopefuleconomics.ca

Hopeful Economics features two full days of workshops, speakers and panel discussions. There will also be a social innovation challenge where social entrepreneurs will pitch their social impact ideas, with opportunities to win funding, mentoring and other prizes.

On April 20, at a separately ticketed event, Leman Kewan Hasano from Syria and John Restakis will give a presentation about the revolutionary co-operative models emerging in war-torn Rojava Syria,
sharing how a new economy is emerging thanks to communities responding to challenges together.

What is Hopeful Economics all about?

We are living in a time of great tension, and great potential for change. From the 2008 financial crisis, to runaway housing prices in major North American cities, to the ongoing cosolidation of wealth in the top 1%, to our inability to respond to climate change, the shortcomings of modern macro-economic policy are clear.

Meanwhile, governments and industries are failing to respond adequately, still stuck in an outdated economic paradigm that subsidizes multinational corporations in carbon-heavy extractive industries, offers tax breaks for the wealthiest, and believes in privatization of public utilities and other assets.

It feels like we are at the crossroads of history, engulfed in a fog of uncertainty. What is there to be hopeful about?

Well actually, there’s plenty.

All over North America, and beyond, a non-partisan consensus is emerging: the mainstream economy isn’t working for us.

And on a local level, people are already working on new economic models that do work for them. New forms of social ventures and social finance are emerging that blend financial return with social return. Participatory processes are being undertaken by governments and communities to engender more inclusive and equitable forms of development. At the same time, crucial discussions on reconciliation and decolonization are taking place that open up exciting possibilities to reimagine the future.

We are already building a new, hopeful economy. It’s time to recognize these efforts, to share what’s working and to do some big picture thinking together. That’s what Hopeful Economics: Leadership & Innovation Summit is all about.

Keep an eye on the Hopeful Economics website to find out more about speakers and panel discussions as they are confirmed.