The Future is Public Towards Democratic Ownership of Public Services
Resistance to privatisation has turned into a powerful force for change. (Re)municipalisation refers to the reclaiming of public ownership of services as well as the creation of new public services. In recent years, our research has identified more than 1,400 successful (re)municipalisation cases involving more than 2,400 cities in 58 countries around the world.
Executive summary - The future is public (PDF, 4.25 MB)Average time to read: 30 minutes minutes
But this book is about more than just numbers. It shows that public services are more important than ever in the face of the climate catastrophe, mounting inequalities, and growing political unrest. Together, civil society organisations, trade unions, and local authorities are crafting new templates for how to expand democratic public ownership to all levels of society and opening up new routes to community-led and climate conscious public services.
The Covid-19 crisis has made clear the disastrous effects of years of austerity, social security cuts, and public service privatisation. But it has also demonstrated that public services and the people who operate them are truly the foundation of healthy and resilient societies. As privatisation fails, a growing international movement is choosing (re)municipalisation as a key tool for redefining public ownership for the 21st century.
Find the Public Futures Global database here.
Table of contents
Part 1. Reclaiming public services around the world
Chapter 1 Norway: Bankruptcy sparks more than 100 cases of remunicipalisation- By Nina Monsen and Bjørn Pettersen
Chapter 2 Paris celebrates a decade of public water success - By Célia Blauel
Chapter 3 Canada: Local insourcing in face of national privatisation push - By Robert Ramsay
Chapter 4 Problems without benefits? The Danish experience with outsourcing and remunicipalisation - By Thomas Enghausen
Chapter 5 Africa: Private waste service failure and alternative vision - By Vera Weghmann
Chapter 6 National, regional and local moves towards public ownership in the UK - By David Hall
Chapter 7 Putting the ‘public’ in public services: (Re)municipalisation cases in Malaysia and the Philippines - By Mary Ann Manahan and Laura Stegemann
Chapter 8 Rebuilding public ownership in Chile: Social practices of the Recoleta commune and challenges to overcoming neoliberalism - By Alexander Panez Pinto
Chapter 9 United States: Communities providing affordable, fast broadband Internet - By Thomas M. Hanna and Christopher Mitchell
Part 2. From (re)municipalisation to democratic public ownership
Chapter 10 A new water culture: Catalonia’s public co-governance model in the making - By Míriam Planas and Juan Martínez
Chapter 11 The empire strikes back: Corporate responses to remunicipalisation - By Olivier Petitjean
Chapter 12 The labour dimension of remunicipalisation: Public service workers and trade unions in transition - By Daria Cibrario
Chapter 13 Knowledge creation and sharing through public-public partnership in the water sector - By Milo Fiasconaro
Chapter 14 Transforming the state: Towards democracy-driven public ownership - By Hilary Wainwright
Chapter 15 Putting energy democracy at the heart of a Green New Deal to counter the climate catastrophe - By Lavinia Steinfort
Infographics - (Re)municipalisation 11 country profiles