eDemocracy or Something Even More Earth Shattering?

Here is an editorial by John Richardson and Jed Emerson, writing in the Stanford Social Innovation Review.  They ponder how technology can be used to revitalize democracy and restore the lost faith in the democratic process.

They are playing at the edges of a much more exciting proposition that my brother, Bill Collier, is calling “Crypto Nations,” the emergence of voluntary associations that offer many of the same services as coercive enterprises currently do.  They are also touchng on ideas covered by Donny Gebert, who has been talking about a blockchain republic.  But they fall just short of both my brother and Donny, imagining only a technology that serves to enhance current coercive enterprises, not fundmanentally compete against them.

eDemocracy: An Emerging Force for Change

The world’s current democratic institutions came into being about the same time as the telegram. But while Information and Communications Technology (ICT) has evolved, our systems of governance have not.

We believe new forms of government decisionmaking processes will play a critical role in addressing our world’s many challenges. While the enormous reach and computational capacity of the Internet and the development of global-spanning social networks spur visions of a better democracy, these new forms of governance remain largely aspirational.

Five main challenges to eDemocracy remain. Here, we outline each challenge, as well as recent developments that suggest that integrating eDemocracy with impact investing and innovative public policy may be the best method for overcoming many if not all of them.

There is one caveat for the impact investor: No single organization or initiative—either public or private—has solutions to all five challenges. In fact, few touch on more than two. Therefore, we must view eDemocracy through the lens of an ecosystem that will, in time, integrate solutions across each of the following challenge areas. In the absence of a central organizing body or defined market demand, impact investors must deploy capital in a manner that best supports this integration.

The effort to redesign democracy is a high-risk investment. However, the rewards to communities, societies, and our world may be exponential, offering a compelling impact investment opportunity.

 

Read More at ssir.org
About Paul Gordon 2945 Articles
Paul Gordon is the publisher and editor of iState.TV. He has published and edited newspapers, poetry magazines and online weekly magazines. He is the director of Social Cognito, an SEO/Web Marketing Company. You can reach Paul at pg@istate.tv

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