Newsletter, Omaggi, Area acquisti e molto altro. Scopri la tua area riservata: Registrati Entra Scopri l'Area Riservata: Registrati Entra
Home / Articoli / Going Local: Creating Self Reliant Communities Now

Going Local: Creating Self Reliant Communities Now

di An Interview with Michael Shuman* - 03/01/2006


*HopeDance Magazine

Michael Shuman is the author of six books including Going Local: Creating Self Reliant Communities in a Global Age. He is also a frequent lecturer on the benefits of supporting locally-owned businesses. We spoke to him at the 2005 Bioneers conference in San Rafael, California. (See below for more information about Mr. Shuman).

Q: So Michael, what are you up to these days?
MS: Between now and the end of the year I have two big projects. One is finishing a new book called Small-Mart: How Local Business is Beating the Global Competition. The other is to finish the stock offering on my chicken company Bay Friendly Chicken. We’re nearing the end of a USDA grant. I want to have the stock offering ready for people to buy into by the end of December.

Q: So what is the new book going to be about?
MS: The book makes the case for local ownership and self reliance as critical parts of building a prosperous local economy. But the emphasis in this book is really on three things. One is trying to explain why LOIS (locally owned import substitution) is better than TINA (“There is no alternative,” a phrase coined by British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher regarding free trade and globalization, the globally mobile companies). The second is to lay the case for why LOIS businesses are becoming more competitive. And third, there are several strategies that we review for transforming the community from TINA to LOIS. One strategy is the “local first” campaign; another is “global community capital.”

Q: You talk a lot about how buying local keeps money in the community. Are people receptive to these types of arguments?
MS: I think so. What has happened in the last few years is that finally LOIS advocates have done some good studies that have demonstrated that relative to TINA, a LOIS investment is going to get you that much more multiplier. So for example, there was an impressive study done by Civic Economics in Austin, Texas, which showed $100 spent at a Borders bookstore leaves $13 in the local economy, while $100 spent at one of the two local bookstores in Austin leaves $45 in the local economy. So roughly speaking, for every dollar you spend, you get three times as much from this multiplier if you spend it locally. Three times as many jobs, three times as much wealth, three times as many tax dollars.