Alternative Regionalism Works On
Alternative Regionalisms project operates at 3 levels
Alternative Regionalisms project operates at various levels:
- Democratising Europe
Building Together “Another Europe”: Over the last 10 years, TNI has been exposing the flaws of the European Integration model and calling for a more democratic, socially and environmentally just Europe. Particularly, TNI has demonstrated the problems of neoliberal regional integration and the limits of the export-led integration model in Europe. Since 2010, TNI’s work on Europe has focused on challenging key components of the European Commission’s Economic Governance legislative plans that transfers powers away from EU member states and EU citizens to Brussels. TNI and its partners have analysed the changes and their economic and democratic implications, brought them to the attention of a wider CSO audience, and proposed and supported alternative responses to the EU financial crisis.
- People-centered regional integration
There is a need to reclaim regional integration by civil society and social movements, to promote a people-centred regionalism. People-centered regional alternatives would mean rethinking the current corporate-led model of development, and seek regional integration based on the principles of cooperation and complementarity.
People-centred regionalism would break with the export-driven development model and would be a mechanism of raising living standards, promoting and protecting our industries and protecting our agriculture. People-centred regional integration would be based on the democratisation of decision-making in all areas of the economy.
There are a myriad of areas where regional alternatives make more sense than pursuing national or global ones. These would include, among others, areas like climate change, food shortages, industrial development and regional trade, policy for the use of natural resources, energy and infrastructure, and the question of regional finance and migration.
- Promoting cross-fertilisation of experiences between Africa, Asia, Latin America and Europe on regional integration and alternatives
TNI, together with Focus on the Global South and Hemispheric Social Alliance, anchors the People’s Agenda for Alternative Regionalisms (PAAR) initiative. PAAR has opened a space for regional alliances of social movements and CSOs in Africa, Latin America, South East Asia, South Asia and Europe to come together to discuss and exchange experiences and strategies for critical engagement with regional integration processes and the development of people-centred regional alternatives. The PAAR website (www.alternative-regionalisms.org), hosted and maintained by TNI, acts as a clearing house for relevant material and as a web-based monitor of the state of affairs in each region. Over the last 5 years, TNI and its partners have organised cross-regional events that bring together social actors from different regions to discuss regional integration and regional alternatives and have produced popular material such as videos or publications.
Supporting regional alternatives in the Global South
The Alternative Regionalisms project has played an active role in supporting numerous people's regional summits in Latin America (Mercosur and UNASUR People’s Summit), Asia (ASEAN Civil Society Conference) and Africa (SADC People’s Summit). TNI has also promoted consultations to advance the development of concrete alternatives and strategies, has carried out mappings and research studies to help develop regional alternatives on specific themes such as finance and economic governance, natural resources, trade, climate, transparency, and public services.