Posts Categorized: Communities

self-organization is the future

If we as a society think it is important that citizens are engaged, people are passionate about their work, and that we all contribute to making a better world, then we need to enable self-organization. Central planning and hierarchical decision-making are just too slow and ineffective, especially for complex situations involving lots of people. In… Read more »

a dire shortage of alternative models

The shift from a market-dominated society to a networked society is well on its way. The TIMN [Tribes + Institutions + Markets + Networks] model shows how civilization grew from a collection of tribes, added institutions, and later developed markets, as the dominant form of organization. These aligned with revolutions in communications: from oral, to… Read more »

social media: an unrealized opportunity

“The difference between a community and a network is that you belong to a community, but a network belongs to you. You feel in control. You can add friends if you wish, you can delete them if you wish. You are in control of the important people to whom you relate. People feel a little… Read more »

farewell jay cross

I first got to know Jay Cross through his blog (it was before we even used the term) in the late 1990’s. I was one of the few people to comment on his posts and that was the beginning of our friendship. Several years later (2002) I got an email from Jay saying he would… Read more »

step aside for network era democracy

Verna Allee says that in states of ‘complex unorder’, loose hierarchies and strong networks are necessary. This point was driven home this morning as I listened on CBC radio about the closure of a rural school in Nova Scotia and how the option of turning it into a ‘hub school’ was beyond the comprehension of… Read more »

cooperation for the network era

Clark Quinn recently asked, as have many others, the difference between collaboration and cooperation, and why it is important. “collaboration means ‘working together’. That’s why you see it in market economies. markets are based on quantity and mass. cooperation means ’sharing’. That’s why you see it in networks. In networks, the nature of the connection… Read more »

no organization is an island

Organizations are alive when people can exert their autonomy in ethical practice. This aligns with self-determination theory, which puts forward three basic needs for people: competence, autonomy, and relatedness. Even progressive organizations often miss out on the latter, described by the authors as an, “inherent tendency toward growth development and integrated functioning”. It takes more… Read more »

smart cities need smart citizens

I will be speaking this Wednesday in Issy-les-Moulineaux, France at a conference on ‘The Smart City, the Cloud, and Citizens’ (dead link).  My presentation will be short and focused. Here are the main points, in English. The French version may be webcast, so watch my Twitter feed for updates. We are connecting our cities to… Read more »

time to start cooperating

In tribal societies, your family is your source of power. In institutions, it is your position in the hierarchy. In markets, dominance is through competition. We are a tri-form society: Tribal + Institution + Markets. The latter currently dominates how we organize as a society. It is competitive. School is competitive, with individual grades. Work… Read more »

cooperation makes us human

Automation of procedural  work is accelerating. What was considered knowledge work yesterday will be routine tomorrow, and workers will be replaced by software and machines. At the same time, access to real-time data is making individuals more powerful, and managers obsolete.