Share Your “Fixing the Future” Experiences with the Hashtag “#Fixthefuture.”

In conjunction with the VOD release, we are launching an online campaign to help get the word out about the film and what you, the viewer, can do to help fix the future.

By using the hashtag “#Fixthefuture” and inviting people to share their ideas and stories on how they can fix the economy, we hope that this engagement will foster a positive and progressive conversation about what we can all do to make sure our collective future is bright.

You can follow the film and campaign on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Tumblr and Instagram.

How You Can Get Involved!

There are thousands of initiatives around the country — from bike sharing to farmers markets to local business networks — aimed at creating sustainable, local economies. All share common goals of creating jobs and improving the quality of community life. Below are some ideas that are taking hold, along with resources to get involved and learn more.

Worker-Owned Co-ops

A worker cooperative is an alternative for-profit structure based on democratic principles like voting, open access to information, free speech, and equal distribution of resources and income. A co-op is owned by all of the employees of the company in equal portions.

Get Involved: The US Federation of Worker Cooperatives offer resources and advice on starting a worker cooperative.

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Banking and Investing

There is a national movement toward putting money into local community banks and investing in locally owned businesses. Some of these local banks, such as Bremer Bank, donate a major portion of their dividends to causes in the communities they serve.

Get Involved: Move Your Money, a national movement to bank with local, community banks, has a tool to help you find financially sound institutions where you live. You can also find a community bank near you using the Go Local tool from The Independent Community Bankers of America.

The New Rules Project, a group encouraging policies for increasing citizens’ political and economic power, has compiled resources for starting a local banking campaign in your community.

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Sustainable Connections in Local Economies

Sustainable economies are systems where local business owners make up the majority of the local economy. Innovations in green building, community capital, sustainable agriculture and energy efficiency projects are all tied together within each community, making the economy local, green-based, and equal. The Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE) is an alliance of 80 independently operated local business networks dedicated to building what they describe as local living economies.

Get Involved: There are BALLE community networks in 30 US states and Canada. Use BALLE’s map to find a community network near you. BALLE also provides information and guidance on how to start a community network.

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Business Voice & Power for a Just and Sustainable Economy

There is a growing movement to bring forward business leaders to articulate, demonstrate and advocate for real opportunities and policies for a sustainable economy. These businesses are joining together to bring this message to the White House, Congress, State Legislators, the Media and other businesses. So whether it is rebuilding US manufacturing, safer chemicals, renewable energy, sustainable agriculture or moving beyond the GDP, they are working to show that businesses can do well financially as they also provide social and environmental benefits.

The American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC) is a growing coalition of business organizations and businesses committed to advancing a new vision and framework as well as policies that support a vibrant, just and sustainable economy. Through its member organizations it represents over 145,000 businesses and more than 300,000 entrepreneurs, owners, executives, investors and business professionals.

Local Independent Business Ownership

Buying local is about more than just supporting small business over big corporations for the sake of helping the little guy/gal. When you buy from local, independent retailers and producers, you’re giving money to people who actually live and shop in your community. That means more money is invested back in your neighborhood, keeping your local economy healthy and strong. In fact, for every dollar spent locally, 45 cents remains in the community as opposed to  the mere 15 cents that remains when shopping at a chain store.

The American Independent Business Alliance (AMIBA) is a national non-profit organization helping communities successfully operate programs to support community-based enterprise and entrepreneurism, build local wealth and prevent the loss of independent businesses. AMIBA has helped more than 85 communities launch Independent Business Alliances, ”Buy Independent/Buy Local” campaigns and many other pro-local initiatives.

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Time Sharing

Time banks offer members the ability to get credit for services they provide to other members — covering everything from cooking to car rides. For each hour of work, one time dollar is deposited into a member’s account, which they can use for services offered by other members. For Fixing the Future, David Brancaccio visited Hour Exchange Portland where he deposited an hour in a time bank by helping to insulate someone’s home and withdrew an hour of sailing lessons.

Get Involved: See: hOurworld, Time For the World, Cyclos, Complementary Currency Database and Time Banks USA

Owning Our Future, a book by Marjorie Kelly

Owning Our Future by Marjorie Kelly shows how flourishing enterprises all over the world are proving more nimble, sustainable, and even more profitable than traditional forms of incorporation that are ill-suited to meeting the world’s urgent sustainability challenges. Along the way, Kelly identifies five essential patterns of ownership design that make these models work. Owning Our Future is a groundbreaking work praised by Natural Resources Defense Council co-founder Gus Speth, environmental hero Bill McKibben and Seventh Generation co-founder Jeffrey Hollender.

“Of all the important elements lacking from progressive thought, ownership design is perhaps the most foundational. Kelly nails it in a way that can drive it home to everyone. This is the most thorough and properly nuanced treatment of the subject I’ve seen anywhere. Kelly is a brilliant writer.” — David Korten, author of The Great Turning and When Corporations Rule the World

Read more about the book on Marjorie’s website and buy a copy of Owning Our Future from your local independent bookstore. Click here for a limited time offer to save 30%.

And check out our New Economy Reading List, including Owning Our Future!

Bike Sharing

Bicycle sharing programs make a number of bicycles available for shared use, typically in urban environments. One example is Nice Ride Minnesota, a non-profit bike-sharing system with 65 stations and over 600 bicycles on the streets of Minneapolis. Bike sharing programs remove three difficulties of daily cycling use: home parking, theft and maintenance of your private bicycle.

Get Involved: Use the map provided here to find a bike share program.

View The Bike-sharing World Map in a larger map

The bike-sharing world map (courtesy of MetroBike). View The Bike-sharing World Map in a larger map

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Car Sharing

Car sharing programs are an increasingly popular alternative to personal car ownership, especially in urban areas. They provide an innovative way to eliminate traffic, reduce dependence on fossil fuels, and save people across the country the time and money involved in car maintenance.

Get Involved: There are dozens of car sharing programs in U.S. Cities and there numbers are growing. View this list of current and pilot car sharing programs maintained and updated by the non-profit,

City CarShare, a Bay area non-profit, offers information and adviceon how to bring car sharing to your community.

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Local Farmers Markets

Farmers markets seem to be springing up everywhere in the last few years. Buying from local farmers helps community farms to stay in business and boosts local economies. A huge upside: Food from farmers’ markets is fresher than produce in the supermarket, which often means better taste and nutrition.

Get Involved: Insert your zip code in the tool provided by Local Harvest to find farmers markets where you live.

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Suggested Reading

Your America – Democracy’s Local Heroes

Fixing the Future Executive Producer John Siceloff reveals essential lessons from twelve stories of ordinary citizens accomplishing extraordinary changes in their communities. ”Your America is a wonderful tonic for cynicism and despair.  It brims with real life heroes, from scholars to barbers to bureaucrats to businesspeople, w ho remind us that one determined person can begin to turn the world.”

- Scott Simon, host of NPR’s Weekend Edition Saturday

Acting as if Tomorrow Matters

John Dernbach’s latest book is is a guide to making the United States environmentally sustainable. ”Using the knowledge and experience of leading sustainability practitioners, this book demystifies the quest for sustainability by providing a checklist of practical and tested ideas that can be used in any place or sector to create an attractive and sustainable future.”
- Timothy E. Wirth, President, United Nations Foundation and Better World Fund