Mapping Our Futures: Economics and Governance Curriculum

This curriculum explores our economic and governance systems through a participatory community-based process to create knowledge and share solutions that foster community, equity and healthy communities.

¡Nos complace anunciar que el currículo de educación popular sobre economía y gobernanza del centro Highlander “Mapeando Nuestros Futuros” ya está disponible completamente en español!  Haga clic para ver la página del currículo en español. We’re excited to announce the Highlander Center’s Economics and Governance popular education curriculum “Mapping our Futures” is now fully available in Spanish! Click to see the Spanish Curriculum page. Continue reading this page for the English version.

Available in 1.5 hour, 3 hour, and 1 day versions, Mapping Our Futures is designed to be used by organizers and community members to examine how these systems are designed, how they work, how they impact communities, and to imagine and practice more solidarity economy solutions. Through political education, community mapping, and shared knowledge building, participants learn more about how economy and governance impact their lives and work. The curriculum also supports groups in developing strategies to change the economies in their communities.

We base this work on values and principles developing around the world with work for a social solidarity economy, as well as our own deeper experiences with communities across the U.S. South.   We hope you will use these sessions, adapt them to your own communities and share back ideas and challenges in our work to build a more just world.

Receive a Free Download of our 1.5 hour,  3 hour, or 1 day English version:

visual representation of the shift from a power over economy and governance to a shared power model of the social and solidarity economy
 Transitioning to a Social Solidarity Economy AKA The Boot Diagram (Art by Jidan Terry-Koon, based on an original image design by Rachel Plattus) 

1.5 Hour – Take a dip into our experiences with Economics and Governance and explore Beautiful Solutions from around the world!

3.0 Hour – Delve into our experiences with Economics and Governance by mapping our communities, and explore Beautiful Solutions from around the world!

1 Day – Develop relationships by delving into our experiences with Economics and Governance and our families, mapping our communities, looking at how the economy works, exploring Beautiful Solutions from around the world, and starting to generate ideas for solidarity economy efforts that might be possible in our communities.

We also have longer two day and three day versions available for a deeper process within communities – contact us if you want to know more.

Other resources available for download:

Here is a link to the Beautiful Solutions website that has expanded ideas and strategies from around the world:



For more information, email us at:



Highlander’s work with the US Solidarity Economy Network, the Center for Popular Economics, United for a Fair Economy, and our partnership with Beautiful Solutions have shaped this curriculum. Former Highlander educator Elandria Williams developed most of the curriculum as it exists today, along with Susan Williams and Samir Hazboun. We’d also like to recognize the contribution of brilliant educator organizers, developers, and economists doing transformative economy and governance work in the South and beyond who helped create this process, as well as all the participants who tried out versions of this curriculum and gave feedback, including rural and urban community groups, unions, and cooperatives from Alabama, Boston, Kentucky, Mississippi, New York, Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., and Tennessee.