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Letter from the Editors
Michelle Thorne, Chris Adams and Carrie Hou

Solarpunk and Hope

We Don’t Have the Right: A Decolonized Approach to Innovation
Shayna Robinson

Artefacts from Hopeful Futures
Decentralizing Digital: Loraine Clarke, Babitha George, Romit Raj, Jon Rogers, Neha Singh, Martin Skelly and Pete Thomas

Decentralising Digital: Yuvraj Jha

Fossil-Free Futures

We Need a Fossil-Free Internet by 2030
Chris Adams

Tech4Bad: When Do We Say No?
Ian Brooks MBCS, Minna Laurell Thorslund, Aksel Biørn-Hansen, Elena Somova

Tackling Adtech and Climate Misinformation

Open Letter: Tackling the Threat of Climate Misinformation and Disinformation
Climate Disinformation Coalition

Carbon Footprint of Unwanted Data-Use by Smartphones
CE Delft

Cabin: A Privacy-Preserving, Carbon-Aware Web Analytics Program

Tech Workers Take A Stand

How a Tech Worker Fought Back from Being Fired as a Union Organiser
Clarissa Redwine

The Handbook Every Worker in Tech Needs to Read
Ifeoma Ozoma

What We Can Do Better: Managing Change in Businesses
Cathleen Berger

Sustainable Web Craft

Green Tech: What Solutions Are Being Advocated?
Anne Currie

Beyond Single-Dimensional Metrics for Digital Sustainability
Abhishek Gupta

Green Software Development Is The Only Software Development We Need

Luis Cruz

Climate Action and Net-Zero Ambition: Best Practices for Small and Medium Enterprises?
Cathleen Berger, Chris Hartgerink, Indré Blauzdžiūnaitė, and Vineeta Greenwood

Climate Justice and Solidarity

Climate Colonialism and the EU’s Green Deal
Myriam Douo

Climate Justice as a Core Competency among Internet Practitioners
Michelle Thorne and Chris Adams

A Beginner’s Guide to Climate Justice in Tech
Richard Kim

Intercitizenship and Solidarity-Driven Business
Andres Colmenares

About Branch

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Intercitizenship and Solidarity-Driven Business

IAM Weekend 21: Imagining Intercitizenships (Trailer) from IAM on Vimeo.

As global heating reaches boiling point, Andres Colmenares, co-director of IAM, asks how brands can address a global crisis of sociological imagination.

Imagine being the CEO of a valuable brand in one of the most profitable industries worldwide. Imagine that your sustainability agenda is driven by carbon offsetting. Then, imagine one day you wake up to the news that your country’s advertising watchdog has ruled that your carbon offsetting campaign is greenwashing, and a court orders your company to decrease emissions by 45% by 2030. Then, you’re invited to present your ‘net-zero by 2050’ plans at a high-profile climate conference and a young activist calls you out. What would you do?

As organisations including Greenpeace expose carbon offsets schemes as greenwashing, brands are facing the challenging task of rethinking their sustainability agendas, shifting them away from a toxic economic growth model in which nature, and humans, are reduced to mere resources for a limitless cycle of production–consumption.

The complex and large-scale consequences of this unsustainable model currently manifests in the interconnected economic crises of supply chains, energy prices and semiconductor production, reducing humans to resources, consumers or users. However, it’s also feeding a global crisis of sociological imagination—a concept defined by sociologist C. Wright Mills as the awareness of the relationship between personal experience and wider society.

At the core of these crises is a collective identity crisis. Who are we? Are we superheroes that can save the planet or the evil species who are killing it? Humanity is part of a vast, fragile and deeply beautiful living organism that we refer to as Earth, and therefore, our survival is interdependent on the health of the oceans, forests, non-human lives and the well-being of each of the 7.9 billion human beings.

Mindful brands should use this as an opportunity to repair the socio-ecological damage caused by decades of extractive user-centric practices – before a court forces them to do so. They can start by embracing the ancestral wisdom of Ubuntu philosophy that stands for the concept: ‘I am because we are’. In this philosophy, an individual is part of a larger and more significant relational, communal, societal, environmental and spiritual world. They’re not a powerless consumer.

This ancient idea is at the heart of intercitizenships, a new word we are using at IAM. To us, it’s a thinking tool and collective proposal to reimagine our shared sense of identity as humans, and our common sense of belonging to Planet Earth. This is happening in the shadow of an unsustainable digital economy that is growing outside of an ecological framework; where billions of persons have been reduced to individualised consumers of digital technologies.

Ultimately, brands are stories; stories that are capable of making consumerism the unofficial religion of Westernised societies, but also of reshaping the behaviour of millions; transforming collective imagination into collective action to inspire more conscious life choices. Why not use that power to design solidarity-driven business models instead of greenwashing people’s minds with carbon offsets?

Why not use that power to design solidarity-driven business models instead of greenwashing people’s minds with carbon offsets?

The most valuable (and sustainable) brands (and businesses) of the coming decade will be those that contribute to global healing instead of global heating—which is technically a more correct way to refer to the changes in the energy balance of us, Planet Earth.


Andres Colmenares is the co-director of creative research lab IAM. On November 11, 2021, the 7th annual gathering for creative professionals looking to collectively envision sustainable futures for the internet(s) took place in Barcelona and online across Planet Earth.