Summer school: Life after Growth

After decades of dogmatising growth as a measure and necessity of progress and well-being, the implications for the planet and societies are increasingly becoming hard to ignore. Public discourse in research and policy are progressively embracing post-growth perspectives. But in the meantime, the fable of unlimited growth has expanded across all domains of human activity. Beyond economic and political priorities, the growth mantra has shaped our collective imagination of what life is about. Growing our business, community, influence and audience, even growing as persons. If stopping the growth madness poses a financial and identity crisis, not stopping it poses an existential one. To grow or not to grow? To emancipate ourselves from this rugged dilemma, we turn to the commons to demystify stories of growth and replace them with ones that define our collective affairs in harmony with the human and planetary condition. The commons, including the wealth we inherit and create together as societies, constitutes a vital sector of the economy generating value that is often taken for granted. Can the commons guide us in making sense of work, technology, organisation – and life! – in a post-growth society?


The summer school includes four full days: 06/09, 07/09, 08/09, and 09/09 in 2023. We start at 09:30 am on 06/09.


The summer school will take place in Kalentzi (GR), a village at the Municipality of North Tzoumerka, 30km away from Ioannina. The access to Kalentzi from Ioannina is through the provincial road Ioannina-Pramanta. Kalentzi is 20km away from the 2 big highways, which lead either to Athens or Thessaloniki, and 35 km from Ioannina’s King Pyrros airport. Here you may find more info about travelling and staying in the region.

Summer school coordinator and organisers

The coordinator is Dr. Alex Pazaitis. The summer school is organised by the P2P Lab of Tallinn University of Technology, the Post-Growth Innovation Lab of the University of Vigo, and the Department of Social Policy of Democritus University of Thrace.

Target group

The summer school is open to local and international PhD students from all disciplines interested in political ecology, organisational studies, and/or technology and society studies. Master students who have completed their first year of studies at their home university could also be enrolled in the programme. We also wholeheartedly welcome practitioners with similar interests and work. Excellent command of the English language is necessary.

Scope and aim

We need to take a leap of faith off the imminent trainwreck of unlimited growth. In this summer school, we will seek to re-establish how we value, care for, and nurture our collective affairs through the commons, across: the production of things and covering of social needs; organisation and coordination of knowledge, technology, skills, and capabilities; and the relation to our emotions and our own body, our time, effort, and affect beyond economic production. Due to the cross-disciplinarity and complexity of these matters, the commons provides a pervasive framework, functioning as the fabric that can bring together diverse perspectives from both theory and practice. Facilitators and students will co-create a mutual learning community to explore and reflect upon commons-based ways of understanding, acting, and being.


The summer school is a theoretical and hands-on exploration of alternative trajectories in technology, society, and organisation. The P2P Lab members will facilitate the theoretical investigations, blending formal and non-formal education techniques. Dr. Ben Robra from the Post-Growth Innovation Lab and Dr. Sofia Adam from Democritus University of Thrace will provide insights from their scholarly and practitioner tenure, with Alicia Trepat Pont and Maro Pantazidou contributing with reflexive and experiential learning practices. The hands-on exploration will allow students to engage with commons-based initiatives and organisations from the P2P Lab global network. A provisional list of the participating organisations includes Wind Empowerment, an association for the development of locally manufactured wind turbines; Noesya, a coop working on the development of eco-designed and accessible websites; and the Tzoumakers rural community makerspace based in Kalentzi, the High Mountains, a social coop supporting mountainous development and rehabilitation, and the Commonen energy community. The final list will be updated, according to the participants’ selection process one month in advance.


There is no fee.


For applications send a CV and one-page long motivation letter to alicia AT Deadline: May 31st, 2023.

Travel information

Here you may find more info about travelling and staying in the region.


The summer school is financially supported by the European Research Council under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No 802512). The seminars and the workshops will take place in facilities and buildings kindly provided by the Municipality of Northern Tzoumerka and the Cultural Society of Kalentzi. We thank them deeply.


Contact: alicia AT The programme of the school will be announced once the students’ cohort is finalised.