Europe & North America
In Europe and North America, we enjoy close links with a range of different groups, from educational and research institutions, to non-government organisations and networks.
One of our earliest partners is Schumacher College, in Devon, which runs transformative courses on sustainability. For more than two decades, we have been closely involved with the College as it developed a wide range of inspiring post-graduate, vocational and short courses. Many of our Associates and Advisors are among the thinkers and doers who teach at Schumacher, and we have jointly carried out a number of residential courses on Earth Jurisprudence and Community Ecological Governance.
Gaia also collaborates with the UK Environmental Law Association (UKELA), Environmental Law Foundation, Wild Law UK and Alliance for Future Generations. Together we provide experiential learning and training materials on Earth Jurisprudence; support and promote precedents which recognise Earth Jurisprudence principles; and explore the application of Community Ecological Governance in the UK. See Earth Law Map for more information.
GRAIN (Genetic Resources International) is a small non-profit organisation that works to support small farmers and community-controlled, biodiversity-based food systems. Since the 1990s we have worked closely on issues around genetic-engineering in agriculture and patents on life, and produced a series of Gaia-GRAIN briefing papers. GRAIN is a founder member of the African Biodiversity Network. In 2011, GRAIN received the Right Livelihood Award for its remarkable work, and continues to mentor ABN partner organisations.
Through our international Advisors, Gaia collaborates with European groups such as the European Environment Agency. We have links with European groups supporting traditional livelihoods and communities, such as the Scottish Crofting Federation and Global Eco-Village Network. Gaia began to work with teh Kalix community in Sweden in the late 1990s to explore application of the Community Ecological Governance methodology. The work continues to grow.
Gaia Events are frequently organised in collaboration with groups such as the UK Food Group, Soil Association, Friends of the Earth, Transition Towns, Resurgence Magazine. We often provide a funding channel for smaller and direct action groups on climate change.
Relations with USA groups really strengthened in 2001 when Gaia organised a special meeting, in Arlie, Washington, with Thomas Berry and a small group of colleagues from the USA, UK, Colombia and South Africa. It was here that the principles for Earth Jurisprudence were drafted, which became known as the Airlie Principles. This was the start of a new relationship with USA organisations and individuals, inspired by Thomas Berry's challenging ideas.
Some of our allies in the USA are Patricia Siemen and the Center for Earth Jurisprudence (CEJ), housed at Barry University School of Law, Orlando, and Linda Sheehan of the Earth Law Center in California. There have been a number of exchanges and joint ventures between Gaia and the CEJ. Also Thomas Linzey and Mari Margil and the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF). The success of CELDF in supporting communities in the USA to assert their rights to local governance and gain legal recognition of rights for ecosystems in local Ordinances, are widely shared among our global network.
Gaia is currently a Board Member of International Funders for Indigenous Peoples (IFIP), where annual congresses provide the opportunity for connections between indigenous peoples and grant-making entities.