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WCBN's environmental talk show

noon to 1pm alternate Mondays
podcast / 88.3fm /

The Logic of Sufficiency. Enough really is enough.


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Out guest this week: Dr. Thomas Princen, winner of the International Studies Association 2007 award for his latest book the The Logic of Sufficiency (2005) – the “best book for the study of international environmental problems.”  Commited to intellectual exporation, historical grounding and active learning, Dr. Princen shares his insights on the need for “localization,” “sufficiency” and “appropriately placed buzzwords.”

Learn more about Dr. Princen here.

Pick up The Logic of Sufficiency in Ann Arbor at Shaman Drum, or online used or through Amazon. While there, have a look at his other books… restraint in consumption, not in thinking.

In other news…

Something pity to look at, Emptied Oceans, a short from Randy Olson and Shifting Baselines:


[…] back from the radio station after our fab interview with Thom Princen, I asked him about the future of the “localization” seminar […]

Dear IHIH,

Great show with Tom Princen. I really like the lobster story since it identifies a natural threshold that continues to be identified through the historic experiences of local fishermen (both men and women who practice the art of fishing), who maintain a culturally rich and ecologically sustainable eco-social community by identifying, deliberating on and ultimately respecting natural thresholds in their own life and the life of their community of practice.
The same thing is true of baited hook and line vs. trawling fishing for cod with severe eco-social outcomes when the threshold is transgressed, usually in the interests of capital or patronizing industrial development programs.

The only thing I would add to the Lobster story is that in New Brunswick they had the technology right (highly inefficient but totally sufficient technology that respected a natural threshold associated with lobsters) but the distribution of lobsters within the Native and Settler fishing communities was totally skewed in the favor of the Settler fishermen. For years conservationists had pointed to the sustainability of the lobster fishery in New Brunswick until a national court decision promoted by Donald Marshall (a falsely accused and convinced Native man from Cape Breton) who had gone fishing without a license and out of season for eels, lobster and other marine life. In the end the politics of mal-distribution of the lobster set the scene for a violent on-the-water altercation with the native fishing community of Burnt Church. Traps were cut and physical violence and property damage against both Native and Settler communities. This is a good case to emphasize that the identification of natural thresholds does not end the political relationships within localizing places. The distributive question, who gets what?, is taken within or outside natural thresholds and cannot be assumed to exist even in the technology used helps to maintain ecological integrity. There is also the issue of the shifting baseline and what we take to be a recovered ecosystem… I wish I was there to take Tom’s course. Let us know how it goes.

[…] of Possibilities is doing a series on innovation (I wonder if Thom Princen knows all the interviewees). This episode is excellent too, particularly the first half with David […]

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