Pour Tous Distribution Center: Auroville’s Communal Cooperative as Participatory Platform of Conscious Citizenship

Clarence-Smith, Suryamayi Aswini (2016) Pour Tous Distribution Center: Auroville’s Communal Cooperative as Participatory Platform of Conscious Citizenship. In: 28th Annual Conference of the SASE (Society for the Advancement of Socio-Economics), 24 to 26 June 2016, University of California, Berkeley.

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The Auroville ‘basic needs’ cooperative, Pour Tous Distribution Center, “PTDC,” is modeled on provisioning rather than consumerism, and on a social rather than a capitalist economy, a reflection of the ideals on which the intentional township was founded. Supported by the collective fund of the community, none of the operational expenses of the outlet are included in the cost of items – all of which are provided at their cost of purchase and in the spirit of service to members. Knowing that no profit will be derived from the transfer of goods to members invites the participation of Auroville commercial units in contributing their products at cost to PTDC, and thereby directly to fellow Aurovilians. A contribution system by which each individual funds the communal account for the cooperative invites those with the inclination and financial means to do so to donate in excess of their personal expenditure, towards the collective. The absence of pricing on items available at PTDC is designed to encourage members to focus on their needs first, and emphasize that no items are sold at the cooperative, but purchased on behalf of members with their contributions. PTDC is an attempt to reverse the trend of individualization and marketization of the Auroville economy, and re-affirm the community’s foundational directive of collective provisioning to meet the basic needs of Aurovilians with no exchange of money. As such it exhibits a form of ‘conscious citizenship.’

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Subjects: Collective Organisation > Collective Organisation (General)
Depositing User: Admin User
Date Deposited: 19 Dec 2019 12:58
Last Modified: 21 May 2020 04:55
URI: http://aurorepo.in/id/eprint/3

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