A Call for Collaboration and Action: Towards an Inclusive Economy in the Monterey Bay Region

November 2, 2023

This keynote speech was given at A Look Back at State of the Region 2023: Embracing Collaboration for Regional Prosperity. Delving into a report that sheds light on the economic landscape of the Monterey Bay region, Dr. Chris Benner argues that sustainable growth and long-term decision-making should be at the forefront of economic discussions.

Solidarity Economics 101

September 19, 2023

Discover Solidarity Economics in this insightful video. Traditional economics is built on the assumption of self-interested individuals seeking to maximize personal gain. This is far from the whole story, however: sharing, caring and a desire to uphold the collective good are also powerful individual motives. In a world wracked by inequality, social divisions, and ecological destruction, can we build an alternative economics based on our mutual co-operation?

Workforce Systems Development

September 19, 2023

Workforce development is a traditional approach to inclusive economic development that focuses on investing in people, rather than businesses. But our current workforce development “system” is really a fragmented ‘non-system’ that is underfunded, paternalistic and outdated, and is built on top of an education system that was designed to segregate the workforce.

MBEP 8th Annual State of the Region Keynote Speech

 October 14, 2022

Monterey Bay Economic Partnership (MBEP) hosted its 8th Annual State of the Region, bringing together a cross-sector gathering of business, government, educational and non-profit leaders to discuss some of the biggest challenges facing the region. Keynote speakers Drs. Chris Benner and Manuel Pastor shared their research on the importance of solidarity and mutuality in economic growth, as well as embracing terminology that is inclusive.  

Movements, Mutuality & Momementum

January 28, 2022

A talk with the Renewal Initative Team at PICO California. Manuel Pastor highlights the importance of economic narratives and how to reimagine while lifting up commonality.

Solidarity and Mutuality: Manuel Pastor – Future Hindsight

 December 30, 2021

In order to repair our current social contract, we must first repair our relationship to the Commons. Our economy currently prioritizes property protection, wealth protection, and disproportionate power, while often disregarding the realities of human life. Social movements can create a sense of mutuality, of what we hold in common, and amass power to retake the Commons. Turning to each other has never been more effective.

Tune in on Spotify or Apple Podcast.

POWER, PLANET, POLICY: Solidarity Economics and Climate Justice

 November 13, 2021

In this session at the Bioneers Conference, Natalie Hernandez from Climate Resolve, and Nailah Pope Harden of ClimatePlan, joined Manuel Pastor and Chris Benner to discuss how these concepts apply in the realm of solidarity with people and the planet, and how we can make this real in terms of policy and power in this moment. 

Solidarity Economics: Mutuality, Movements and Momentum

 November 13, 2021

In a world wracked by income inequality, social divisions, and ecological destruction, can we build an alternative economics based on mutual cooperation and respect for our environmental commons? Among the nation’s most influential progressive thought leaders, activists and scholars, Manuel Pastor taps his new book, written with his long-time colleague Chris Benner, to propose that drawing on our instincts for connection and community can actually help create a more robust, sustainable, and equitable economy.

Solidarity Economics 

November 23, 2021

Solidarity Economics 

– OUR Movement OUR Economy

 November 3, 2021

A conversation with prominent national policy advocates and social movement leaders on Chris Benner and Manuel Pastor’s  forthcoming book Solidarity Economics: Why Mutuality and Movements MatterThis conversation delves deeply into the concept of Solidarity Economics, its meaning and how to enact change that is real in terms of policy and power. It also discusses how we can expand the notion of Solidarity Economics in our movements and how Solidarity Economics can provide a useful framework to change the narrative of OUR economy.

Solidarity Dividend – Mutuality Creates Prosperity

September 17, 2021

Paying people money just because they have low incomes seems impossible in our current American economic system, but if we shift our view with an understand of solidarity economics, we realize what a valuable idea it can be. This video explores movements for a universal basic income or universal guaranteed income from the perspective of solidarity economics.

Solidarity Economics – Mutuality Creates Prosperity

September 11, 2021

Join Betty Francisco and Dr. Manuel Pastor as they discuss economic equity and the responsibility of workers, entrepreneurs, leaders and consumers. At this time, the power of the philanthropic, public, and private sector funds are key to shaping our future. Learn about the solidarity economy and its role in building a post-capitalist world that puts people and the planet first. How can the current system better support this new economic model? Explore personal awakening and professional awakening.

KSQD Cutting Edge #132 with Chris Benner and Rob Fairlie on Solidarity Economics

September 9, 2021

Traditional economics is built on the assumption of self-interested individuals seeking to maximize personal gain. This is far from the whole story, however: sharing, caring and a desire to uphold the collective good are also powerful individual motives. In a world wracked by inequality, social divisions, and ecological destruction, can we build an alternative economics based on our mutual co-operation? In this episode, Professor of Economics Rob Fairlie and Professor of Environmental Studies and Sociology Chris Benner discuss the forthcoming book, “Solidarity Economics: Why Mutuality and Movements Matter” by Chris Benner and Manuel Pastor.

Why is an Economy Built on Solidarity Important at This Time?

May 19, 2021

For nearly 250 years now our major economic and political institutions have operated on the notion that people are innately self-interested while also building our economy on the backs of communities of color and other groups. Despite some social gains we have reached a point where our economic structures are driving inequality, social division, and ecological destruction. This video describes an alternative vision of Solidarity Economics where mutuality and collaboration are at the economy’s center. Solidarity Economics will be the cornerstone of our new forthcoming book which will be available in Fall 2021.

Reparations for Black Americans: The Road to Racial Equality in California and Beyond Economy

April 16, 2021

William A. Darity Jr. and A. Kirsten Mullen, co-authors of From Here to Equality: Reparations for Black Americans in the Twenty-First Century; Anne Price, President of the Insight Center for Community Economic Development; Barbara Lee, U.S. Representative for California’s 13th congressional district. Moderated by Chris Benner, Director of the Institute for Social Transformation.

Co-sponsored by: The Institute for Social Transformation, Center for Racial Justice, and Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at UC Santa Cruz.


Putting People First: Reimagining OUR Economy

March 23, 2021

Join Saru Jayaraman and Manuel Pastor in a conversation with Angela Glover Blackwell, the host of the Radical Imagination podcast as they discuss why many restaurant workers are paid a sub-minimum wage and the current fight to end the sub-minimum wage through the lens of Solidarity Economics. For more information, click here

Latinx Economic Resilience in the Time of COVID (Session II)

July 16, 2020

New America CA is committed to ensuring that the perspectives of Latinx communities are heard and incorporated as California develops innovative solutions to pressing public problems. As we grapple with the enormous repercussions of the global pandemic, we are dedicated to shining a light on the impacts on all Californians.

While it is true that the COVID-19 outbreak impacts all Americans, it has, quite simply, impacted the Latinx community disproportionately. The coronavirus has highlighted disparities in the workplace and in society, which have long gone unaddressed. The more we understand these challenges as we rebuild from this crisis, the greater the likelihood that we will emerge as a more inclusive and just place.

Join New America CA on Tuesday, July 14th at 2:30 PM PDT for our second conversation on COVID and the Latinx Community. The live streamed conversation, Latinx Economic Resilience During and After COVID, will feature local and national experts who will provide insights and resources, as well as move attendees toward action-oriented solutions.

The conversation will focus on understanding the challenges facing Latinx workers and families, especially those experiencing increased economic precarity during the COVID-19 crisis. We’ll focus on solutions, exploring ways to meet families’ immediate income needs, as well as their employment needs via access to more recession-resilient jobs and skills in the future. Economic equity leaders will share the needs they are seeing, along with resources and ideas that can help Latinx communities thrive during and after the pandemic.

Reimagining The Future with Racial Equity

June 28, 2020

With politicians and institutions responding to the economic crisis generated by COVID-19, the recovery process offers an important moment to rethink our political and economic system. During this panel discussion, The Greenlining Institute and equity allies discuss how an equity-centered response to this crisis can not only help us recover, but create a stronger and more resilient planet and people.

Inclusion, Growth, and Community:
Reimagining Our Economy in the Wake of Crisis

Jun 25, 2020

For the last decade, economic research has been showing that an Achilles’ heel for prosperity was inequality: regions that were more unequal, more racially segregated, and more socially fragmented were unable to maintain employment growth over time. Meanwhile, qualitative work was showing that places that were able to better wed inclusion and growth did so through community, that is, by creating sustained data-driven dialogues between diverse sectors that helped to forge a sense of a common regional destiny. What does that imply for the COVID crisis, a pandemic that has both lifted the veil on persistent inequalities and made it absolutely clear that we cannot protect ourselves if we do not seek to protect all of us? And what does that imply for recent efforts to advance racial justice, a response to the institutional and systemic racism that has plagued our country for centuries? How can regional leaders help metropolitan economies to not just recover but reimagine a more prosperous, more equitable, and more sustainable future?

Solidarity Economics for the Coronavirus & Beyond

with Professor Chris Benner

June 23, 2020

In the long term—not just in the current emergency—mutuality matters, morally and economically. An ethos of mutual caring and support leads to better health outcomes and helps to generate a more prosperous and resilient economy and society. Professor Chris Benner discusses how we urgently need to think long term—both about the things that got us into the crisis, and how we can refashion our economy and society as we eventually emerge

The COVID Crisis Reveals Our Fundamental Illness As a Society

Dr. Manuel Pastor, USC

June 21, 2020

Policing is the tip of the racist iceberg, says USC professor Dr. Manuel Pastor. COVID-19 has laid bare the deep racial disparities that for decades have had people penned in economically, educationally and environmentally.

12 Steps to Reboot California’s Economy

June 2, 2020

Dr. Chris Benner provides a brief overview of From Renewal to Resistance: A 12- Step Program For the California Economy, co-authored by Dr. Manuel Pastor.

Health Care Access, Service Delivery, and Youth Civic Engagement in the Central Valley

May 19, 2020

USC Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (PERE) and UC Santa Cruz Associate Professor Veronica Terriquez present Health Care Access, Service Delivery, and Youth Civic Engagement in the Central Valley during the COVID-19 Pandemic, a webinar on the disparate impacts of the global pandemic on Central Valley communities.

Building Solidarity Economics in the Age of Coronavirus and Beyond

April 23, 2020

In this Right Livelihood College webinar, Nnimmo Bassey, Vandana Shiva, and Chris Benner explore how alternative economic frameworks are informing and informed by this moment of the coronavirus crisis

Why We Need Solidarity Economics

April 22, 2020

Economists have gone to great lengths to write humans out of economics, pushing self-interest and generally providing two choices—faith in markets or the state. INET grantee and University of Southern California Sociologist Manuel Pastor argues that we need to change the conversation and put people first. His research shows that rebuilding the bonds between people universally leads to better outcomes for health, society, and the environment.

Will the Coronavirus Lead to a Recession? w/ Economist Manuel Pastor

The Skyy John Show

APril 22, 2020

Sky John talks with Manuel Pastor, a Ph.D. economist who is a Professor of Sociology at USC. We cover the economic competition between China and America, the economic impact of the coronavirus, how Trump is approaching the US economy, and what we can do from here.

Solidarity Economics & Fast Pitch for Solutions

April 19, 2020

We started this coalition with a sense of urgency around the need for strategies that build resiliency for our communities and families. We invite you to join us for a Live On-Line Event on April 16th with Dr. Manuel Pastor, Dr. Chris Benner, and featuring Dr. Anne Price as we look to Solidarity Economics and Building a Culture of Mutuality in response to the growing challenges of COVID-19 and the economic downturn.

Coronavirus Will Increase Inequality

The Skyy John Show

Mar 14, 2020

Sky John talks with Manuel Pastor, a Ph.D. economist who is a Professor of Sociology at USC. We cover the economic competition between China and America, the economic impact of the coronavirus, how Trump is approaching the US economy, and what we can do from here.

Remaking the Economy in Los Angeles:
The Rise of Social Movements

January 21, 2020

Los Angeles is known, of course, for being home to Hollywood, but it is so much more than that. The City of Angels—home to four million people, and the center of a metro area of 13 million—has seen remarkable changes, both demographically and in its economy. In 1980, less than 15 percent of Los Angeles County residents were Latinx; today, nearly half are. Economically, Los Angeles was once famously an “open shop,” largely non-union city; today, the nation’s leading port and manufacturing city is an exemplar of community-based social, racial, and economic justice organizing.

In this webinar, we will hear from some of the people who are behind this transformation. Following the interview with Pastor, who—in addition to his academic work, has been a social movement activist himself—NPQ Senior Editor Steve Dubb will facilitate a panel with three expert speakers: Roxana Tynan, Executive Director of Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy (LAANE); Isela Gracian, Executive Director of East Los Angeles Community Corporation (ELACC); and Ana Siria Urzua, Sustainability Director of Santa Ana Building Healthy Communities.

Just Growth Video:
Inclusion and Prosperity in America’s Metropolitan Regions

August 16, 2019

USC Equity Research Institute (previously the Program for Environmental and Regional Equity) breaks down how regions that work toward equity may have stronger and more resilient economic growth.

From Resistance to Renewal:
Building An Economy Based Belongin

with Manuel Pastor

April 8-10, 2019

Our economic rules are generally based on the notion that self-interest and competition are natural human impulses, with conservatives suggesting that markets will channel those forces into equilibrium and others arguing to constrain individual and business action with appropriate state intervention. But humans are not just self-interested; we all have a desire to belong and connect in community. What would it mean to build a new solidarity economics? How would such a new economic theory and narrative play out in terms of organizing and change, norms and practices, politics and policy? How could we build such an economy at scale—and what does it mean for our contemporary crises of inequality, separation, and fragmentation?