Chapter 13 The commons
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The concept of the commons or common goods has been incorporated into economic theory - along with those of public goods and private goods - largely due to the contributions of Elinor Ostrom in 1990 who, based on the empirical study of different forms of self-government that manage resources for common use, made its importance and specificity visible. The debate has not ceased, and different re-elaborations have been carried out, proposing to take up the commons as a type of social relations through which people can propose shared goals and the mechanisms to achieve them, thus generating modes of existence with certain autonomy from the market and the state, rather than as a good or resource. The heterogeneous experiences of self-management and self-organization centred on the production of the commons are beginning to arouse the interest of several authors as new ways to rethink antagonisms and social transformation. From this point of view, approaching the debate on the commons from the social and solidarity economy (SSE) could help to re-politicize and rethink the role that this economy could play in social change.