Category: History and Philosophy

Understanding the history and theory of both democracy and sociocracy provides a deeper understanding of the principles and practices of what a sociocracy or sociocratic democracy might be, and why. Knowing the intention and development of an idea supports the meaningful application of its principles and practices in everyday life.

Policy Decisions

The Heading of the Constitution of the United States. Policy decisions are defined in management theory as those decisions that define the basic principles of the organization and determine how it will develop and function in the future. Policies set the limits within which operational decisions are made. Examples include: Vision, Mission, Aim Budget and Finance Practices Allocation of Resources Organizational Structure Policy decisions limit the actions an organization and its members can take without changing the policy. In sociocracy, policy decisions are made… Read More . . . “Policy Decisions”

The Definitive List of Culture Hacking Books

At FreeStandingAgility.com, Daniel Mezick has compiled an intriguing list of books that discuss various approaches to changing cultures. All organizationsThe Delibrative Democracy Consortium (DDC)u is an alliance o... More develop a culture, a common language and ways of doing things. They communicate in specific ways, share common behavioral expectations, and value similar values. These are not always positive or even productive. Even when they stand in the way of effectiveness and harmony, they persist. Culture… Read More . . . “The Definitive List of Culture Hacking Books”

What Are Systems?

Q. So what are systems and why do a sociocratic organizations meet that definition? A system is a grouping of parts that share a common purpose. OrganizationsThe Delibrative Democracy Consortium (DDC)u is an alliance o... More are systems of people who share a common purpose or aim. A Grouping of Parts The parts must be defined. A lawnmower doesn’t work with just any old part. It works because specific parts do specific jobs. All parts… Read More . . . “What Are Systems?”

Organizational Structure and Equality

Today I completed a post on organizational structure that I began writing in 2010 on “The Tyranny of Structurelessness,” an article by Jo Freeman published in various versions from 1971-1973. She discussed the problems with the women’s movement in the late 1960s and 70s that began to believe that structurelessness in and of itself was an organizational ideal that would solve the problems of autocratic rule and the exclusion of women and minorities. She defines… Read More . . . “Organizational Structure and Equality”

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”

Stand Asides

Stand asides are a time-honored practice in majority vote decision-making. They are used when a person wants their vote recorded, but can’t vote yes, doesn’t want to vote no, and doesn’t want to abstain. Usually it means the person disagrees but has agreed to stand aside and allow the decision to go forward. Sometimes it means that they have a conflict of interest and want the record to show that they were not voting, but… Read More . . . “Stand Asides”