2014 Social Ecology Intensive Seminar

January 3-10, 2014 in Denton, Texas This year Texas has become an inspirational focal point in struggles for reproductive rights, anti-racism, climate justice, and democracy. This January, the Institute for Social Ecology (ISE) will be coming for the first time to Texas (just 40 min. north of Dallas) to offer a 7-day Intensive Seminar. During […]

VT History panels on communes & cooperatives

ISE faculty and board members Dan Chodorkoff and Grace Gershuny are presenting on 2 panels for the Vermont History Association’s annual meeting, Sat. Sept. 21st at the Pavilion auditorium next to the VT State House in Montpelier. Dan will be on the “Colleges and Communes” panel at 1:15 and Grace is on a Cooperatives panel […]

Book Review: Gunnar Rundgren’s “Garden Earth”

Garden Earth: From Hunter and Gatherer to Global Capitalism and Thereafter by Gunnar Rundgren Reviewed by Grace Gershuny Gunnar Rundgren is well known in the international organic community as an articulate leader, consultant, theorist, and practitioner of organic agriculture world wide.  A founder of the influential Swedish organic certification program KRAV, he later became President […]

Mike Small: Scotland’s Local Food Revolution

ISE alum Mike Small has been working in the Fife district of Scotland to develop new models of organizing around local food. That work has now culminated in a book titled Scotland’s Local Food Revolution. Mike writes: It seems fitting  in the same week that climate warming greenhouse gas reached 400 parts per million for […]

Grace Gershuny on Ecologizing the Food System

From ISE faculty member and organic pioneer, Grace Gershuny: This is a first installment of an ongoing discussion about Social Ecology and the food system – both why the one we have is so wrong, and how our understanding of the root causes of its failures can inform food system activists and practitioners.  There is […]

Vermont towns say no to tar sands oil

Tuesday, March 5th was Town Meeting Day in Vermont and, following a long tradition of our towns taking a stand on issues of wider importance, at least 29 towns, including Montpelier and Burlington, overwhelmingly passed resolutions opposing the proposed transport of tar sands oil through our region. The resolutions also supported efforts to eliminate oil […]

Support Food Democracy at Green Mountain College

The fate of a pair of oxen at Green Mountain College’s Cerridwen Farm (Poultney, VT) has attracted national media attention, but not because of the exemplary way the administration at this small college has engaged students in deciding the role of animals in their community food system. Please read the appeal that follows by the […]

New book: “Our Food, Our Right”

This outstanding introduction to today’s community-based food movements is designed by Annie Brulé of SEEDS, the social ecology project on Washington state’s Vashon Island. This review was written for the publisher’s website at

Local food is all the rage these days, and rightfully so. People across the US are increasingly frustrated by the chemical-laden, processed calories that pass for food in most major supermarkets and are increasingly looking to alternative sources, from farmers markets and farm share programs to co-ops and natural food stores. But with food prices rising everywhere, healthy food is in danger of becoming even more of an elite niche market, accessible only to those with surplus income to spend. While some of us will pay more for food that is local, organic and fair-trade, many of our neighbors are often limited by shrinking household budgets to food that is nutrient-deficient, genetically engineered, and potentially hazardous to health.

Carmelo Ruiz on Vavilov’s Legacy

Vavilov’s legacy by Carmelo Ruiz-Marrero Every modern society needs a substantial public investment in agricultural research. And such research requires the acquisition of useful plant and seed specimens from all over the world. It is no different in the case of socialist societies. During the first half of the twentieth century the Soviet Union was […]

“Failure of the Green Economy”

The German group, Bundeskoordination Internationalismus (, has just published a new critical paper titled After the Failure of the Green Economy. This comes at an important time, as delegates from around the world are readying to meet in Rio de Janeiro for the 20th anniversary of the 1992 UN Conference on Environment and Development. Unfortunately, […]