It turns out that, when faced with care challenges, communities rise to meet them. By doing so, they step outside of our current paradigm, one of provision of care services by a combination of the state and private business. This changes the game completely to one of decentralization and reciprocity. These services often display an uncanny degree of efficiency. So no, care provision does not need to be zero-sum. There are unexploited resources in the system. But they cannot easily be added to our existing care system. They are too strange: ad hoc, blurry at the edges, often existing in legal gray areas. Unfundable.
In this talk, we explore some of the amazing care services that communities are providing - right now - to people that the state and private business have let down. We then ask how we, as a society, would need to change for them to continue to exist, and to scale where possible.
We will discuss, among other things:
- The economic truism that "health care costs can only go up, never down", and why that's a fallacy.
- The difficult relationship between care giving and management culture.
- Greece's shadow health care service. 68 clinics with no legal status, don't accept money and provide free health care to people out the public health care system.
- A large unofficial refugee camp in France that has developed its own services – community kitchens, a library and even a theatre!
- A makerspace in England with an incredibly diverse user base, where people find meaning (and income) through engaging with open technologies.