I’ve been looking for a new description for Sociocracy.info and have tried several. In reading recent posts on firstname.lastname@example.org and sociocracy-related websites, I found the word collaborative used the most often to describe sociocracy and, perhaps more importantly, to be used consistently with the same meaning:
Collaboration is working with others to achieve a common task and to achieve shared goals. It is more than the intersection of common goals found in co-operative organizations.
Why… Read More . . . “Collaborative Governance”
This is the standard definition of consensus used since the 1960s and 1970s, and probably before. It was published in 1981 in United Judgement: The Handbook of Consensus Decision Making by the Center for Conflict Resolution.
The goal of consensus is a decision that is consented to by all members. Of course, full consent does not mean that everyone must be completely satisfied with the final outcome—in fact, total satisfaction is rare. The decision must… Read More . . . “Definition of Consensus Decision-Making”
Laird Schaub helped found and has been living in Sandhill Farm, an intentional, income sharing community in Rutledge, Missouri since 1974. His community is very small, less than 10 adults, but his experience is very broad. He has been doing training and consulting in governance and consensus decision-making since 1987. He gives several workshops on decision-making, facilitation, proposal writing, delegation, etc., at the annual Cohousing Association Conferences. He is the Executive Secretary and Development Coordinator… Read More . . . “Consent vs Consensus : Laird Schaub on Sociocracy”
There is a conversation on the email@example.com list about the meaning of the word bezwaar, the Dutch word that has been translated as objection. The question is whether objection is a good translation and how other translations might affect understanding objections and consent. The translations into other languages and those in different Dutch/English dictionaries suggest something other than objection. In English, objection means no, “This decision can’t go forward.” In other languages it has… Read More . . . “Understanding Objections & Beheaviments”
As is true with all governance changes, it is easier to begin with sociocracy than to switch midstream. Communities tend to stick with “the devil they know” rather than take a chance on a new one, but more and more and more communities are switching full scale or adopting some of the principles and practices.
Except for those who have switched to sociocracy, cohousing communities use full group consensus as their primary method of… Read More . . . “Switching to Sociocracy in Cohousing Communities”
Let’s start with “What is Sociocracy?”
A quick answer is that sociocracy is both: A social ideal that values equality and the rights of people to determine the conditions under which they live and work, and
An effective method of organizing associations, businesses, and governments, large and small. In English-speaking countries, as a method of organization sociocracy is often called dynamic governance, but around the world is simply called sociocracy. In the 1970s, Gerard Endenburg… Read More . . . “What Is Sociocracy and Why Does Democracy Need it?”
Sociocracy is a governance method based on collaboration, self-organization, and distributed authority. It is designed for transparency, inclusiveness, and accountability. Democracy values freedom and equality but doesn’t have a governance structure guaranteed to ensure them. A Sociocratic Democracy uses the methods of sociocracy to achieve the values of democracy creating a practical and effective way to organize. This site is about sociocracy and the ways in which it can help democracy achieve its highest goal: freedom and equality for all, finally.
What you will find here
This site is a resource on sociocracy and democracy and the ways they support each other. It examines the principles and practices and the ways in which together they could better achieve their objectives. How would things get done in a sociocratic democracy?
New Edition of We the People
Updated and expanded second edition is now available in paper and digital versions—and in Spanish and Portuguese translations.
The sociocracy email discussion list was started in 2002. The list language is English, but members speak many languages if you have translation questions. We discuss anything related to sociocracy, democracy, and collaborative governance.