Who we are & what we do

Some people from the organising team on a seminar day in October 2020

Degrowth Vienna is an association that was founded in 2018 for the organization of the Degrowth Vienna 2020 Conference on Strategies for Social-Ecological Transformation. It has since developed into a dynamic organizing team (the “Orga Team”) of 20-30 members and has sprouted further projects.

What we aim for

As Degrowth Vienna we aim to bring the idea of degrowth into political spaces and organizations in Vienna as well as advance the understanding of and engagement with strategy within the degrowth movement. Degrowth Vienna stands for social and environmental justice, and global solidarity and equality. We strive to be self-reflective and critical of who comprises the degrowth movement and recognize the need for more internal diversity and intersectional approaches.

Degrowth is...

For us, degrowth is a radical critique of the dominant political-economic system; it is additionally a utopian vision and a political process (for more on degrowth c.f. here). Degrowth is both the red thread that ties our projects together and also establishes the principles that our organizing builds on. Degrowth is, thus, not just an idea, but also practical, political, place-based and has real transformative potential.

Activity Report

Cover of our Activity Report 2021

Degrowth Vienna was active in different projects and forms in 2021. Therefore, we decided to publish our first annual activity report with an overview over projects, workshops, finances and a lot more.

Contents

The Activity Report includes general information on the association’s purpose and goals, details on our two big projects (Degrowth & Strategy publication, Solidarische Postwachstumsstadt), efforts of the public relations working group, our participation in the political discourse in Austria, details on the new TRANSREAL project (in cooperation with WU Vienna and Umweltbundesamt), a summary of our finances, an outlook for the year ahead, and an overview of the team.

Why an Activity Report?

Degrowth Vienna developed profoundly since organising the 2020 conference and we now have many different activities that together support us in our collective goals. Additionally, we are prioritizing to establishin ourselves as a stable organisation with decent renumeration for our paid positions. This activity report, our first, gives insight in the projects and activities carried out in the year following the conference.

Our projects

The Degrowth Vienna 2020 Conference

The Degrowth Vienna 2020 Conference’s focus on strategy was unique as was the emphasis on linking bottom-up initiatives with organizations and institutions. This resulted in the creation of a small but expanding Vienna degrowth web, including representatives of nearly all of Vienna’s public universities but also unions, associations and local media (for a full list c.f. here). Our conference intended as an in-person event was adapted to an online format due to COVID-19. The online format had an impressive 100 sessions and over 4000 registered participants, which was a great and unexpected success.

Projects in Fall 2020

In fall 2020 the Orga Team was undertaking three new projects, which included an event – ‘Degrowth Days’, a book on strategy & degrowth, and a series of workshops.

  • The Vienna Degrowth Days take place from 20 – 25 November 2020, and include a series of workshops, walks, presentations, and discussions on the topic “Strategies for Degrowth”. Due to the current Covid-19 restrictions all the sessions have to be online. The aim is providing a space to discuss, exchange, and learn.
  • The book project Degrowth & Strategy highlights the role and importance of strategy in the degrowth movement, selects and builds on contributions from the conference, and strives to provide a meaningful addition to the literature on degrowth. It will be published in the second half of 2021.
  • The workshop project aimed to build up alliances with different actors on other levels than just civil society to enable sustainable social-ecological transformations. It intends to broaden the perspectives of societal actors to degrowth issues and create spaces for Degrowth Vienna to learn from other perspectives. 

Organisational Structure

Degrowth Vienna is broadly composed of three groups: the active members, the supporting members and the advisory board.

The active members are the central part of the organization and are mostly involved in different working groups and projects on a voluntary basis. Working groups such as ‘Finance’ or ‘Awareness’ are cross-project and play a role in the overall organization. A team of coordinators brings together the various projects and working groups and keeps track of the development of the entire association.
Supporting members are individuals or organizations that regularly support Degrowth Vienna financially and thus contribute to the running costs and further development of the association.
Moreover, an advisory board of researchers and professionals supports us regularly with advice and occasionally resources.
Lastly, we are a dynamic organization, which opens the possibility for a diversity ofprojects to be initiated and developed in the future.

To find out more about what we do, ways to get involved or to collaborate, contact us at info@degrowthvienna.org!