Building a Wellbeing Economy 2020

Foundations for Learning and Practice


Co-hosted by NENA and Yunus Centre, Griffith University
28 October to 16 December – weekly evening classes (Wednesday nights)


  • 28 October to 16 December 2020
  • 8 week course – live classes Wednesday nights, from 6pm to 8pm AEDT
  • $295 + GST
  • Online course via Griffith University’s Microsoft Teams platform
  • Digital Badge from Griffith University

What to expect

  • An introduction to wellbeing and new economies concepts, principles and practices
  • Practice based learning that you can apply to your own context
  • Collaboration and reflection with a cohort of passionate people committed to building a new economy
Topics covered:
  • 28 OCT: Different schools of economic thought - neoclassical economics, steady state/ecological economics, Indigenous economics, Doughnut Economics
  • 04 NOV: Ownership, property, commoning and cooperatives
  • 11 NOV: Social justice, equity and decolonization
  • 18 NOV: Energy – fossil fuels, renewable, demand and efficiency
  • 25 NOV: Work – including universal basic income & workers cooperatives
  • 02 DEC: Food systems
  • 09 DEC: Housing – design, affordability, ownership
  • 16 DEC: Law reform and regulation + overview wrap up

Guest speakers include:

  • Dr Ingrid Burkett, Yunus Centre, Griffith University
  • Associate Professor Louise Crabtree, University of Western Sydney
  • April Crawford-Smith, Pingala Energy
  • Morag Gamble, Permaculture Education Institute
  • Adjunct Associate Professor Mary Graham, Kombumerri First Nations person and University of Queensland
  • Tim Hollo, Green Institute
  • Loriana Luccioni, University of Queensland
  • Antony McMullen, Cooperatives expert
  • Dr Joanne McNeill, Yunus Centre, Griffith University
  • Professor Brendan Mackey, Griffith Climate Action Beacon
  • Dr Michelle Maloney, NENA/AELA and Adjunct Senior Fellow, Griffith Law Futures
  • Godrey Moase, Union and work expert
  • Professor Bronwen Morgan, UNSW
  • Joel Orchard, Future Feeders
  • Professor Yin Paradies, Deakin University
  • Dr Jose Ramos, Action Foresight
  • Dr Nick Rose, Sustain
  • Felicity Stening, Enova Energy
  • Jason Twill, Urban Apostles
  • Ross Williams, Future Dreaming

Facilitated by:

  • Dr Michelle Maloney, New Economy Network Australia (NENA) and Australian Earth Laws Alliance (AELA)
  • Dr Joanne McNeill, Yunus Centre, Griffith University


Course Details

This course will offer a 2 hour ‘live’ class each week, for 8 weeks, on a Wednesday night, from 6pm AEDT (starting Wed 28 October and finishing Wed 16 December).

Each class will include a number of expert speakers, with discussions facilitated by the course hosts.

Participants will be provided with 30-60 minutes of reading, viewing and listening material, to help you prepare for each week's class.

Practical case studies and examples will be discussed each week, to enable participants to connect theory with practice.

Week 1


28 October


Introduction to different schools of economic thought and practice

 In our first week, we will discuss what an ‘economy’ is, and provide an overview of different ways of defining and thinking about the economy.  We’ll begin with an introduction to the current dominant economic paradigm – neoclassical economics – and then explore the many alternatives articulated in the new economy framework - including steady state, ecological economics, community economies, Indigenous economics and Doughnut economics.

Dr Michelle Maloney, NENA

Mary Graham, Kombumerri people and Adjunct Associate Professor, University of Qld

Dr Haydn Washington, CASSE NSW

Dr Joanne McNeill, Yunus Centre Griffith University

Week 2



4 November

Ownership, property, commoning and cooperatives

 In our second week, we will examine the foundations of capitalism that underpin many aspects of modern society. We will briefly examine the origins and emergence of the concepts of private property in modern law and economics, and examine the various challenges, responses and alternatives to private accumulation and ownership in the new economy movement.  The role of cooperatives and ‘the commons’ will be explored, as examples of different paradigms for collaborating and managing resources.

Associate Professor, Dr Louise Crabtree, University of Western Sydney

Dr Jose Ramos, Action Foresight

Antony McMullen, Cooperatives expert

Week 3



11 November

Social justice, equity and decolonizing the economy

 Building on weeks 1 and 2, this session will begin with a critique of the cultural context of and impacts of colonisation on First Nations peoples in Australia and connect with current issues around social and economic justice in Australia, and around the world. The role of localisation and community-based economies will be discussed, as responses to the rapidly growing disparities between wealthy and not-so-wealthy people in our society.

Professor Yin Paradies, Deakin University

Ross Williams, Future Dreaming

Dr Ingrid Burkett, Yunus Centre Griffith University

Week 4



18 Nov

Energy – fossil fuels, renewable energy, energy efficiency

In week 4 we examine the fossil fuel energy systems that have driven the industrialised economy and discuss the impacts they have had (good and bad), on modern societies. We begin with an analysis of fossil fuels and how they have contributed to the climate changed world we now face.  We then critique existing energy systems and explore the distributed, renewable energy systems emerging around Australia and globally.

Professor Brendan Mackey, Director of the Griffith Climate Action Beacon

Felicity Stening – CEO, Enova Community Energy

April Crawford-Smith - Pingala

Week 5



25 Nov

Work – universal basic income, workers cooperatives

 In week 5 we examine the cultural concepts, myths and realities of ‘employment’ and ‘work’.  We debunk traditional notions of ‘work’ and explore the emerging arguments, policies and actions being taken, to rewrite what the world of work can look like in a wellbeing economy.  This session will include a discussion about worker cooperatives, and other concepts gaining increasing interest, such as Universal Basic Income and Job Security Guarantee.

Dr Michelle Maloney, NENA

Tim Hollo, Green Institute

Loriana Luccioni, University of Queensland

Godfrey Moase, Union and Work expert

Week 6


2 December

Food Systems

 In week 6 we examine elements of the Wellbeing Economy through the lens of food systems.  We examine and critique industrial scale food systems, including the impacts of industrial scale food production's dependence on fossil fuels, chemicals and pesticides.  We then examine the rapidly growing domain of local, small scale, regenerative and organic farming – including Community Supported Agricultura (CSA) and other models of urban, peri-urban and rural farming.


Dr Nick Rose, Sustain

Joel Orchard, Future Feeders

Morag Gamble, Permaculture Education Institute

Week 7


9 December


Housing – design, affordability, ownership

 In week 7 we discuss the housing crisis in Australia, by reconnecting with our previous themes of private property, capital accumulation and social and economic justice and injustice.  The current structures of housing in Australia will be critically analysed and a range of rapidly emerging alternatives to traditional housing provision are discussed, including co-housing, tiny houses, community housing and intentional eco-communities.

Associate Professor, Dr Louise Crabtree, University of Western Sydney

Jason Twill, Urban Apostles - Next Generation City Makers

Week 8



16 December


Law reform and regulation  +  Course Conclusion

 In our final session, we will discuss a range of regulatory and legal issues that practitioners and policy makers face when advocating for innovative economic responses to emerging issues in Australian society.  We will then recap on the learnings from the course and facilitate a discussion about evaluation and the Digital Badge qualification process.

Professor Bronwen Morgan, UNSW Law School

Dr Michelle Maloney, NENA and Adjunct Senior Fellow, Griffith Law Futures Centre

Dr Joanne McNeill, Yunus Centre


For all inquiries about the course, please email: