Neighbourhood Doughnut Digital Launch

Join us for live talks, shared learning sessions, and explore the full portrait document + tools as they go live online.

“We have work to do, and the world to win.”

—Arundhati Roy



Following over 3 years of taking the ideas of Doughnut Economics off the page with neighbours, researchers, partners and visionaries, and an in person launch and celebration Thursday 27th - Saturday 29th October 2022, join us on Wednesday 7th December for the Digital Launch of the first ever Neighbourhood Doughnut Portrait in Ladywood, Birmingham.


Together we invite you to explore the data, stories and methodologies emerging from the Neighbourhood Doughnut work thus far at this immersive online celebration. Here you will find speakers and performances, installations, sessions to learn together, fun virtual booths to explore, and more. There will be lots to discover and add to through the day, whether you can join us for the whole time or for more focused sessions; whether you are logging in from near or far.

Are you a passionate or curious neighbour; a fellow believer in a new economy; someone already working to usher in socially and ecologically thriving neighbourhoods; someone who wants to; someone who wants to find out what lies behind the doughnut portrait; or someone ready to invest in next steps? If you want to learn together, hear stories and pick up tools from the journey so far and celebrate our first three years together, you will be right at home. We’d love to have you with us at what we know is going to be a special moment to give thanks and look forward together.

Register Your Place Here








Explore The Schedule


We will be holding two online sessions throughout the day, with the content repeated in each to allow more opportunities to join and a wider range of convenient times for international guests. The access link you receive upon registration will work for both sessions, and feel free to join us for either one or both, should you wish to attend sessions that are happening concurrently.


The Digital Launch will take place on Hopin, which acts as a digital venue throughout the day to watch talks live, explore sessions and connect with other online attendees from across the globe.

SESSION ONE
11:00 - 15:00 (GMT)

Most Comfortable Time for Europe, Africa, Asia + Australia

  • 11:00 - 13:00 (GMT): Introductory talks, including context about the Neighbourhood Doughnut, Community Portrait of Place and Data Portrait of Place
  • 13:00 - 15:00 (GMT): A range of online sessions and booths to explore, including Reimagining Economic Possibilities, Neighbourhood Transitions, Beyond School, Good News of B16, Peer-To-Peer Learning Journeys, Centring The Doughnut As An Organising Framework and more.



Session TWO
17:00 - 21:00 (GMT)

 Most Comfortable Time for North America, South America + New Zealand

  • 17:00 - 19:00 (GMT): Introductory talks, including context about the Neighbourhood Doughnut, Community Portrait of Place and Data Portrait of Place
  • 19:00 - 21:00 (GMT): A range of online sessions and booths to explore, including Reimagining Economic Possibilities, Neighbourhood Transitions, Beyond School, Good News of B16, Peer-To-Peer Learning Journeys, Centring The Doughnut As An Organising Framework and more.






What Do We Mean By A Portrait?


“The future can’t be predicted, but it can be envisioned and brought lovingly into being.”

—Donella Meadows


What happens when a neighbourhood starts to tell its own story, from all its different vantage points, through the many lenses we see our lives, our place, its challenges, its opportunities? The chance to paint our own portrait gives us an opportunity to not only see ourselves and celebrate our strengths, but also notice where we fall short, share stories and hopes of how we wish to be together in the future, and reframe what might be possible.


As we find ourselves in increasingly difficult, uncertain, complex times with many crisis being felt all around, what power do we have together? When we can tell a new story of who we are, reframe our collective goals, and build out civic power we can unlock the collaborative, creative, courageous communities that we know we are. The beautiful thing about a portrait is it doesn’t have to perfect, there doesn’t just have to be just one, it can be created by looking through many lenses and from a range of vantage points. When we make our portraits visible to one another, we can also see what and who is missing, where we like what we see and want to do more, where we don’t and want to change and, when we invite our imagination, we can dream of who wish to be and lovingly bring it into being.

Doughnut Economics Action Lab encouraged us to explore our portrait and, along with hundreds of neighbours and partners over 3 years, we unrolled the doughnut and surfaced our community and data portrait of place. We are incredibly inspired and thankful to the work of Leeds, Amsterdam, Brussels, Cornwall and others who pioneered this work, and encouraged and supported us to build upon it. We of course will do the same to others who follow afterwards.

Leeds Doughnut | Towards a safe and thriving Leeds

Amsterdam City Doughnut | DEAL

Doughnut-Shaped Recovery - A Good Life For All Within Planetary Boundaries







Recognising The Time We’re In

“I know everything is bleak and I’m not being idealistic when I say it, but what I have most evidence of is ordinary people doing extraordinary things. I feel powered by the level of organising I’m surrounded by. We will organise and we will win. We are so capable and we need all of us.”

—Farzana Khan


We find ourselves in a polycrisis, where multiple globalised systems are entangled in ways that have cascading impacts on our lives and the natural world we rely on. Times feel and are dark for many, as economic illiteracy, corruption, inaction, and a cruel, regressive government lead us into one of the darkest winters in living memory, and we recognise how hard it is to imagine or build alternative futures boldly together against this backdrop.

Doing so may sound like a big dream or bold words given the existing systems around us and the ever-increasing pressures on those most vulnerable in our communities, and this is a tension we hold and believe makes dreaming and intentionally building near and longer term futures that take us further than we dare possible are even more important right now.




As part of our wider mission at CIVIC SQUARE, we have constantly been exploring how we can go to wider more holistic and plural set of goals and outcomes. This was particularly driven by experiencing hierarchical, often illogical, inequitable relationships with deep extractive and colonial remnants of how philanthropy understood change. We, as communities, as changemakers rooted in our places, simply couldn’t understand the metrics we were working towards and the power structures we found ourselves in. Why on earth aren’t we shoulder to shoulder, accountable to one another, facing towards a mission bigger than us both and recognising the scale of polycrisis, and pace of action needed? Why don’t we work towards planetary goals, and measure how well we were all doing against that?

What if instead of creating inappropriate KPIs and metrics towards 20th century change that continue to extract, we could all orientate ourselves together across public, private, civic towards moving our homes, streets, and neighbourhoods into this safe and just space?

What if we could understand, share and make the data and research open for communities and neighbourhoods; neighbours young and old, could be part of unpacking that, creating new knowledge and dreaming up bold futures?

What if we could get into more equitable relationships with funders and investors to hold each other accountable to goals bigger than ourselves?

These questions have been ongoing, and It’s now time for us to share how we have been exploring them and where it has lead us. In a time of crisis, we know that having moments of clarity, coherence and legibility can help us to ground, reorganise, and move towards the plural, bold goals of transforming our current reality.

To unpack this in our place in many different ways, and in wanting to share how it’s going, we’d love for you to come and experience this with us. We want you to walk away with every tool and story about how we’ve been thinking about how our neighbourhood gets into the doughnut. Not only do we want you to be inspired, but also to know how we’ve critiqued, what’s missing and where the areas for further iteration and experimentation are.


This is an invitation to our neighbours, families, children and more as a celebration of what we have all done together to get to this moment. There is also an invitation to those within the doughnut movement globally to imagine together how to take these portraits forward and keep contributing to the portrait methodology and wider commons. Data scientists, researchers, artists, storytellers, council officers, city leaders who want to help take this forward in a moment where we are feeling viscerally around us the collapse of a 20th century extractive economy, please be sure to connect by visiting the Digital Launch or drop us a line at info@civicsquare.cc.






What’s Next?


“Our Ancestors set us this path - all we have to do is pick up the "baton" and run our race - as fast and as best as we can - then pass it on. And remember that our Ancestors include all beings: we carry all life inside us.”

—Araceli Carmargo


This first portrait is far from the end of the journey, and this collective work can act as a compass and pathway forwards with neighbourhood science and storytelling at its heart as we deepen our practice in our places over the coming decades. We hope to take with us all the wisdom of those who came before us, and build for future generations, with convening like this this to be an annual event where we can reflect on the year gone by, re-roll the doughnut every year, track and celebrate progress, and continuously shift our direction to where we can do better, invest more time, money and attention towards safety and justice for all beings.



The Neighbourhood Doughnut Portrait will be made available as a digital resource shared first here on the DEAL platform in parallel with a print edition and the Digital Launch event, so we look forward to seeing where you take it.


Further Resources

DEAL - Creating City Portraits
Doughnut Unrolled: Data Portrait of Place

Doughnut Unrolled: Community Portrait of Place



Discover More

bit.ly/NeighbourhoodDoughnut

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    CIVIC SQUARE

    Birmingham, England, United Kingdom

    To share open invitations and learnings as generously as we can, and learn from amazing work happening around the world too.

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