How can we overcome the existing political, economic, and ecological crises that humanity faces? With the notion of the commons, Lukas Peter argues that this form of social organization can provide answers to the shortcomings of centralized states and open and competitive markets. By building on and going beyond the work of Elinor and Vincent Ostrom, he develops an ecological understanding of the commons and human freedom, more generally, thereby reinterpreting classical thinkers such as John Locke and John Rawls. Importantly, he does not suggest an end to property, states or markets, but rather a radical democratization thereof, ultimately providing a real alternative for the 21st century.
Lukas Peter (Dr. phil.), born in 1981, is a lecturer in philosophy at the University of St. Gallen. During his dissertation, he was a member of the National Center of Competence in Research for Democracy and taught at the University of Zurich and the University of Lucerne. His research topics include ecology, freedom, democracy and economics. He otherwise makes cheese, participates in community supported agriculture projects, is a father of two children and lives in Zurich.