Category: In Home and Family

In no other place than in home and family is it so important that we learn how to respect each other and to govern ourselves cooperatively. Sociocratic and democratic governance develops leadership, harmony, and strength. How can we be free and equal at home and in our families? How would a sociocratic democracy change daily lives?

Outside Experts on the Board of Directors

Residential communities customarily do not have board of directors members from outside the organization. Corporations normally do, but they may not be chosen by their ability to balance expertise. Non-profit organizations and independent schools often choose board members based on their ability to raise money or influence government or foundation decision-makers. Balanced Expertise Balanced expertise on the board of directors steers the organization from multiple perspectives. Balance can be achieved with experts on larger community… Read More . . . “Outside Experts on the Board of Directors”

Homeowner Association Boards (HOA)

A blog post on the tyranny of homeowners association boards sparked a chord of frustration and disdain in me this morning. The blog post was by Jonathan Nettler, “The Tyranny of America’s Homeowners Associations,” on the Planitizen website, “a public-interest information exchange for the urban planning, design, and development community.” Nettler’s post selectively quotes a post by Kaid Benfield, “Coercion by Contract: How Homeowners Associations Stifle Expression, Sustainablity” on the Natural Resources Defense Council site… Read More . . . “Homeowner Association Boards (HOA)”

Consensus: Community or Decision-Making

Q: Discussions of consensus on cohousing discussion lists seem to be focused on or limited to facilitated, time-bound, decision-making events rather than building a culture of relationships in a community. Is this intentional? Questions about consensus generally do focus on the technicalities and problems of using consensus to make decisions in meetings. And building community is one objective of using consensus because it ensures that the interests of everyone will be taken into consideration. However,… Read More . . . “Consensus: Community or Decision-Making”

When to Review Policies

Q: How can a developing cohousing community protect itself from a member who joins and immediately wants to review all the policies? A:This is can be very difficult for forming groups, but it doesn’t’ stop once you are moved in. Almost every new member will immediately want to start redesigning the community as soon as they have their boxes unpacked. Often they have good ideas and bring new energy, but more often they are re-walking… Read More . . . “When to Review Policies”

Lost Valley Intentional Community, Eugene, Oregon

A video has been posted on YouTube that talks about using sociocracy at Lost Valley Intentional Community. This is a nice video for residential communities — cohousing, cooperatives, condominium, and intentional — because it talks about the values and benefits of creating a sociocracy without the corporate/business vocabulary and concerns. It is also set on the community grounds rather than in an office. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hyw0gBsDeho About Lost Valley The Lost Valley Intentional Community is associated with… Read More . . . “Lost Valley Intentional Community, Eugene, Oregon”

The Fixer

Many communities—cohousing, religious, etc.—believe that conflict resolution is based on loving and understanding. That if we just care more and understand each other’s needs, conflict will go away. They emphasize how hard this is. “This is the hard work we all need to do.” Peace workers, in particular, are big on love and understanding and couple attempts to acquire it not only with hard work but with courage. “It takes a lot of courage to… Read More . . . “The Fixer”