Rich and Nati from Loomio are coming from New Zealand to join US-based team member MJ for a workshop tour across the States. We’re keen to meet with organisers who are interested in working non-hierarchically: whether they’re in cooperatives, startups, communities, collectives, NGOs or corporations.
We’ve been engaged in the craft of non-hierarchical organising for more than five years, starting with Occupy in 2011, co-founding Loomio (a worker coop building software for collective decision-making) and Enspiral (a network of dozens of social enterprise startups and tech-for-good projects). We’re woven into a global community of folks pioneering new ways of working, from ‘agile’, ‘holacratic’ and ‘teal’ organizations, to diffuse activist networks in Hungary, Spain, and Taiwan.
We’re working with local partners across the country to host workshops to share the challenges and delights of non-hierarchical, inclusive, intersectional, collaborative, horizontal organising. You can get an impression of the workshop content from this brief report from a session we hosted in Seoul late last year.
The loose plan is to spend April in the East Coast and May in the West. We’ll update this post as we finalise the schedule. Currently:
March 25th: land at San Francisco.
March 30th: head to Providence and Boston.
April 6th-10th: working with community organisers in Indianapolis.
April 10th: head east, spending the next 3.5 weeks in DC, NYC, Boston.
May 3rd: head to the West Coast. Talk + workshop at UCSB on May 9th and 10th. Spend the rest of May in California, Seattle, Portland
Possibly back to NYC for PDF conference on June 8–9
If you want to support this mission, there are a couple ways to help:
Introduce us to organisers who would really benefit from spending a few hours exploring more sustainable ways of working inclusively. We’re keen to meet with anyone interested in working non-hierarchically: whether they’re in cooperatives, startups, communities, collectives, NGOs or corporations.
It would be amazing to have a few people contribute to cover the travel expenses. We’re looking for individuals and institutions that can sponsor a community workshop. We are currently looking at dates in DC, NY, MA, IN, CA and OR — for about US$1000 we can add another stop to the tour. Please get in touch with Rich ([email protected]) if you can help with sponsorship or you want to co-host an event with us.
Loomio Co-op Member and Director MJ Kaplan has been all over the US in recent months, at conferences exploring impact, collaboration, the economy, the future of work, and more.
I was invited to New York by Coburn Ventures, a unique investment firm that is passionate – maybe even obsessed – with understanding complex, deep transformation in the world. They convened a diverse group of 100 people to explore, reflect and reimagine the dynamics that affect investment and, more broadly, are influencing how we live and work. Continue reading “Delight in Uncertainty…. Gulp.”
Platform cooperativism is the radical idea that the internet would do more good if its major properties were democratically owned and governed.
The Platform Cooperativism conference is coming up this month in NYC: the second major gathering of this emerging new movement attempting to reboot the internet as if workers rights mattered. In preparation for the event, Trebor Scholz and Nathan Schneider (the movement’s two daddies) have launched a new collection of essays on the topic: Ours To Hack and To Own.
“Put it on the blockchain” is no substitute for a critical analysis of power.
We’re super excited about contributing to the upcoming OS//OS open source, open society conference. OS//OS is in its second year and a big gathering of people from across business, technology and government sectors to collaborate, learn from each other and extend the impact of open technology in our workplaces, our organisations and our society.
Some of our maximum favourite humans are going to be there, including these three:
We’ll be hosting a collaboration clinic at the conference for all our Loomio users and interested people on the ground floor of the conference. Loomio consultants will be on hand to help you work out great ways of using Loomio to build participatory team culture and tips and tricks for making better decisions together online.
Loomio can be super helpful if you’re:
Managing a growing team or office.
Leading a project team across any kind of technology
Building a startup team.
Working on a board or advisory group.
Developing policy or working in civic engagement.
We’re looking forward to seeing you at the conference – come find us on the ground floor under the big Loomio sign and let’s help you make better decisions together.
Loomio co-founder Richard D. Bartlett asks ‘what is the government of the future?’
I had the immense honour of being invited to participate in the g0v Summit in Taipei last year. The Summit was basically a chance for 700 people to get together and discuss the future of democracy, and hack on some projects that might help us get there faster.
Here’s a video of my talk, describing some of my experiences over the past couple years and reflecting on the question: what is the government of the future? (Transcript printed below.)
It was a huge privilege to collaborate with a wide array of amazing people and organisations that I had admired from afar, like the activists from the Sunflower Movement that occupied Parliament in Taiwan; occupiers from the Umbrella Movement in Hong Kong; Clay Shirky, academic, author, and speaker; the mySociety crew, who basically invented the idea of civic tech in the UK ten years ago; respectable troublemaker David Eaves; and of course Audrey Tang and Chia-liang Kao, some of the prominent figures of the g0v community.
Using a combination of online technology and offline agitation, each of these projects push for greater transparency, accountability, and participation in government for regular citizens. It was delightful to see this highly distributed, autonomous network of projects all approaching this challenge with a high degree of coherence, and very little explicit coordination.
We are extremely excited about this event because openness is a defining aspect of everything Loomio is about. Our mission is to enable a more open world, where transparency and accessibility in decision-making is the new normal. The work of being open is never finished, but openness has been one of our key values right from the start.
The recent move towards openness in the digital world was enabled by the Internet, as the most powerful communications infrastructure that has ever existed, which was built on free and open source software. This digital movement taps into the underlying human urge for openness that has always existed. OS/OS is a celebration of efforts to consciously reverse practises that deny people the right to share, to participate, to collaborate. We celebrate “the commons”, both physical and virtual, and work to improve commonly-held resources that benefit all.
The Personal Democracy Forum (PDF) in New York is an annual gathering of people from around the world working towards a free and open internet. In June this year, we were lucky enough to be invited to present Loomio at PDF, in a session on “The Future of the Public Internet”. Ben Knight talks about his experience speaking at this amazing event.