Beyond green economy

Conference at Whitsunday with Charles Eisenstein

May 19 - 20, 2013 at Copenhagen Business School

Green growth is an oxymoron

Where do money come from? Why are most people, most companies, and most countries always in debt? Who do we owe all this money to? Why do our politicians always want growth when the Earth is running out of resources? Why do we have to work so hard when machines are taking over more and more of our work? Why are there so many unemployed people while there is so much important work that is not being done? Why are there homeless people and peopleless homes at the same time? Why are there austerity cuts and decreasing welfare everywhere when the World is rich? Why can't the World's politicians agree on efficient measures against greenhouse gases and other pollution? The economists have promised maximal welfare and perpetual growth if only we unleash the free market forces, but instead we are getting crisis, austerity cuts, poverty, overexploitation of natural resources, and threatening pollution. What is wrong with the economists' models? Don't you think we can do better? Don't you think it is possible to create a more just and sustainable World?

If we keep the current debt-based money system, financial crises will continue to occur, with the costs passed onto ordinary people and businesses."

“Contemporaneous with the financial crisis we have an ecological crisis and a health crisis. They are intimately interlinked. We cannot convert much more of the earth into money, or much more of our health into money, before the basis of life itself is threatened.”, Charles Eisenstein in his book Sacred Economics.

The solution is, according to Eisenstein, that we start to take back some of the territory that money has captured. We should simply be better at giving and receiving gifts. The author lives by this principle himself by speaking for free and by making his books freely awailable on the web.

Also speaking at the conference on May 19th is the author of the book Spiritual Economics, Dhanesvara Das; sociologist and associate professor at Copenhagen Business School, Ole Bjerg; and emeritus professor at the Technical University of Denmark, Niels I. Meyer.

The second day of the conference, May 20, is scheduled for a number of workshops with contributions from a diversity of grassroots organizations. These workshops will give you the opportunity to put the information and inspiration from the conference into concrete initiatives.

The conference is organized by Occupy Denmark and Transition Denmark in cooperation with Copenhagen Business School. The language of the conference is English.

Venue of May 19th is Copenhagen Business School, Solbjerg Plads 3, 2000 Frederiksberg, Denmark (Map. Metro to Frederiksberg St.). The second day is held at Studenterhuset, Købmagergade 52 in central Copenhagen (next to the Round Tower. Train or Metro or bus to Nørreport).

There is free entry in accordance with the spirit of the conference, and even the vegetarian lunch served in the break is free. The whole event is based on voluntary work and donations. Donations are wellcome at the conference or by bank transfer to reg. 8401 nr. 1193624.

Exhibitions: There will be a documentary-art exhibition by Crisis Mirror, and an exhibition of art as money by ArtMoney at the conference venue.


Whitsunday, May 19th at CBS, Solbjerg Plads 3:

11:00 Welcome by Martin Spang Olsen
11:10 Ole Bjerg & Charles Eisenstein
Conversation on the origin of money
12:00   Pause
12:10 Niels I. Meyer
Limits to growth: Problematic economic concept of "green growth".
Abstract: The concept of limits to economic and material growth on a limited globe is a central recognition in modern time. Unfortunately, this concept is still not accepted by the dominating economists and by most governments in industrial countries. Structural and political consequences of this concept are not taken seriously. Instead the arguments are derailed to loose concepts as "green growth" and misleading claims of decoupling between growth and global warming. A number of barriers and dilemmas have to be overcome if mitigation of global warming and the transition to a green sustainable society are to be accomplished in time. The paper focuses on the required changes in economic and social systems.
12:40   Free lunch
In cooperation with Restaurant Govinda
13:45 Dhanesvara Das
Consciousness is the problem and consciousness is the solution
14:10   Break
14:20 Charles Eisenstein
Beyond the green economy
15:30   Break
15:45 Panel discussion with Charles Eisenstein, Ole Bjerg, Niels I. Meyer and Dhanesvara Das.
Chairman: Martin Spang Olsen
Note. There is a limited number of seats. It is advised to come early if you want a seat. The speaking will be in the BG Fund auditorium (S.01). There will be live transmission in the Carlsberg auditorium on 2nd floor (2.02) in case there is not enough seats for everybody in the first auditorium. There will also be live streaming so that you can follow the conference at home on Google Hangout, title "Beyond Green Economy". Link will be posted on Facebook.

Informal get together in the evening at the garden restaurant at Ny Carlsbergvej 68.


Second day, May 20 at the Student house, Købmagergade 52:

12:00 Wellcome and presentation of workshops
12:15 How do we move on from here?
Five parallel workshops (with possibility for making more workshops)
13:15 Break
13:45 Workshops continue
14:45 Break
15:00 Common discussion



1 Dhanesvara Das: How to Create an Economics of Compassion
(Dhanesvara Das (Don Rousse) is a social healer, social economist, spiritual teacher, speaker and monk. He travels the World teaching spiritual economics.
2 Ross Jackson: Occupy World Street: A Global Roadmap for Radical Economic and Political Reform.
(Ross Jackson, PhD, is a Danish/Canadian economist, philanthropist and leading expert on foreign exchange with 25 years’ experience in international finance. He is majority shareholder of the organic foods wholesaler Urtekram and chairman of the Danish charity Gaia Trust, founder/funder of two extensive global networks: the Global Ecovillage Network and Gaia Education.
3 Erik Lemcke from Transition Denmark will facilitate an Open Space process, where anyone who has a concrete idea for action can offer this idea up for further development within a group.
Based on the available number of ideas for action, and the total number of participants, there will be an appropriate number of parallel sessions/working groups.
4 Elise Waage-Petersen and Anne Visby: Earth Wisdom - Council on sustainability.
Elise and Anne work as Council Guide Trainers. The workshop introduces The Way of the Council, an ancient process of gathering wisdom and information from eight different perspectives with the purpose of ensuring wholeness and balance on any issue or question raised by the people. During the workshop we will council on a question relevant to the theme of the conference.
5 Pheobus A. P.: From u-topia to til utopia. Video-workshop about people's wishes for the society we want to live in.
(Phoebus in an activist in Crisis Mirror and Occupy Denmark).



A final document with proceedings from the conference and documents from the workshops are published here. Contributions from the workshops can be sent to


Thanks to the sponsors: Govinda Restaurant, Plant2Plast environment friendly plast products, Reklamebureauernes Fællestrykkeri, Forstædernes Bogtrykkeri.