January 26, 2023, 2:00pm MST - March 23, 2023, 5:00pm MST

Economics of Social Change

Mount Royal University

Event Type:

Economics of Social Change is a 5-part workshop series designed for people who are curious about how to apply an economic lens to social issues. Participants come from many vocations and backgrounds, and learn to develop an understanding of the connections between the local economy, community development and social change. In this workshop series, participants will explore alternative economic models, norms and systems that build community wealth instead of shareholder wealth, that value human dignity over exploitation and that support a flourishing web of life through a variety of local, regional and Canadian case studies.   

The 2023 5-part workshop series will take place every other week starting on January 26th. Workshops will be held in person in the Ideas Lounge at the Riddell Library and Learning Centre at Mount Royal University. Individuals interested in participating virtually from within Alberta are invited to reach out via email to to inquire about one of our virtual seats.

Participants are required to watch a pre-recorded video (approximately 30-40 minutes in duration) alongside pre-readings in advance of each session. A certificate of completion will be awarded to participants who complete all 5 sessions.

See the description below for detailed session information Economics of Social Change series or download the program [pdf].


January 26, 2023 – 2:00pm – 5:00pm
The global pandemic, climate crisis, and rising inequality have shone a light on the cracks, inadequacies and injustices within our current systems, impacting both people and planet. Communities around the world are looking to the local economy as a means of addressing growing social and environmental issues. This workshop will explore the history of how the economy has evolved and the growing imperative to build a new economy focused on local solutions to create social change.


February 9, 2023 – 2:00pm – 4:30pm
There is a growing responsibility worldwide for businesses to go beyond financial return to shareholders to seek a greater community benefit that prioritizes people and place. As a result, new ways of doing business are emerging. This workshop will explore the changing nature of business and the role of social enterprise and cooperatives in addressing issues impacting our local community including income inequality, food insecurity, economic inclusion and more.


February 23, 2023 – 2:00pm – 4:30pm
Building inclusive community economies often requires systems change to enable more community-based economic development. This workshop will explore the current opportunities to affect policy change towards a more just and equitable society for all. Learn how localizing spending and fostering community ownership build inclusive community economies.


March 9, 2023 – 2:00pm – 4:30pm
Faced with growing income inequality and stubbornly high levels of poverty in communities across Canada, Reconciliation offers a path forward to build a local economy that works better for more people. In this workshop, learn about the historical context affecting Indigenous peoples’ inclusion in the economy, how Indigenous worldviews intersect with community-based economic development and the opportunities to build a shared understanding that creates jobs and builds communities.


March 23, 2023 – 2:00pm – 5:00pm
The field of social finance is rapidly expanding with new ways to use money to generate social good. This workshop will explore what financing tools exist that can help to diversify your organization’s revenue and scale its impact. We will also explore how you can invest your own money for good. Learn how community organizations and individuals are using social finance to prioritize people and the planet.


Alberta, Calgary


Climate Change, Finance, First Nations, Inuit & Métis, Local Economy, Regional CED, Social Economy