Open World Society

Conceptual Sketch

The concept of the Open World Society is to organize a group of people whom work together - in the broadest sense possible - to improve their lives, give them a better future and make society more environmentally friendly.

We live in a society where people work hard and consume much, where much is said and promised, but where in reality the care for people and nature often ends up being only a minor concern. Not only is our society very stressful, but also a large burden on nature. We are already receiving a lot of warning that things have to change, but the important decisions are not being taken. Additionally we don’t know if the economy we have today will give us a sustainable future.

Many of the problems we are experiencing in our society are caused by the ways we work, live and think. I believe that it’s possible to create a society that’s not only more sustainable, but also better to live in. Hence I have begun to develop this concept, of which I believe it’s also practically feasible. And only a minority will be able to make such transition, but it will be those people that are able to benefit from it.

The basic principle of the Open World Society is simple: it exists of a group of people whom organize themselves and make use of that cooperation to optimize this society - which they can now build themselves - towards well-being of all the people in it.

How?

Such group, which should keep an open mind and a strong will, would be highly capable - the larger the group, the higher its capabilities.

Economically they could organize themselves differently. Now people seek to earn their income by themselves and buy everything they need by themselves. If we would work together tightly as group, we could be doing things differently: they could determine, as group, what they all together need and how they could best get it. Even better, some of these things can be made by ourselves (and thus creating our own local economy) and buy the remaining things as group. We can also consider from a critical point of view our consumption behaviour and our needs and desires, and determine what’s really worth having.

Even better, could, as group, earn all the money we need to buy all the things that we didn’t make ourselves - for example by selling products and services from our own activities. By making sure we have enough activities, and thus making sure that together we have enough money to supply all the things we need, individual members do not have to worry about their financials.

Likewise, we can improve the way we live: instead of all buying a house separately, we could, again as group, buy or build large buildings which we can then use as group. Thus each building can be shared by a group of people. Then we can decrease costs of living. These buildings can then stay property of the society in general while being made available to all its members. The inhabitants can also freely move from one such building to another according to their needs. This could not only press costs, but it would also be more environmentally friendly (both in terms of materials and energy as well as logistics to supply them) and creates a social environment. Also water, gas, electricity, phone and internet can be bought as group and shared.

Additionally we can adjust the location and choice of our activities (which we organize ourselves) and the living areas to each other such that the distance from workplace to living place can be reduced. Hence we could go to work by bike or by foot instead of by car. If we could then also provide a delivery service to deliver all daily needs to these buildings, we could scrap a lot of transportation, skip retail and reduce the number of cars needed in these groups. This again saves costs and reduces burden on the environment.

These lower costs can then be converted to a lower working burden for these members, and they can use their remaining time as they like. Also, having less work, the flexibility and efficiency can be improved: if there is less work, it will be easier to employ people during those moments where you need them. At the same time, we would not have to worry about unemployment: the money is earned (together) and everything we need, we have - we divide, as good as possible, the work over all the people. The more tasks we can simplify or scrap, the better, without having a negative impact on the population. Instead of asking ourselves “how do I earn my money?” the question becomes “how do we best distribute the work?”.

This way we could also reverse economy: instead of continuously creating new markets and new jobs, and selling as much as possible, we simply earn enough money to (with sufficient margin) cover our costs and furthermore produce the things we need. Instead of making an economy that keeps growing (which cannot be sustainable) we make an economy where we seek a balance and where the focus is on simplicity. Only that way we can create a truly sustainable society.

Another advantage of setting up our own activities is that we can adjust the quality of our products to our own needs. We can then continuously ensure that everything is made in an ecologically and socially responsible manner, that technological products last long and are easy to maintain, that houses are built with high quality and that the food is healthy and tasty.

Since this group works together it will also be easier to share knowledge with each other. As society, this group can setup a knowledge database to educate people in all kinds of skills and crafts. Once a certain piece of knowledge is acquired, it can be distributed quickly. By building up knowledge together, the diversity of activities can be continuously improved and more products can be made by ourselves. This way we are less dependent on the world economy and we gain the capability of building up our own sustainable and efficient economy. Useful information and tips can also be shared quickly, and a system can be set up where all members are connected such that useful information can be spread quickly to those concerned.

Inside this society there is no need to create giant corporations. In fact, quite the reverse, by spreading the activities over the society, a distributed system can be created in which not only the distance between workplace to living place can be reduced, but also the distance from producer to consumer.

Instead of setting up large hierarchical structures, we could work in efficient teams which organize themselves as a network to execute the variety of tasks. With continuous observation and communication, the operation of this network can be continuously improved.

Important qualities

Such society would be able to build up important qualities which are not available in today society. For instance, since we do not have to worry about employment, we can quickly stop activities that are no longer worth running and set up new ones that are useful. This flexibility can be used to react on a quickly changing world and the quickly implement useful changes.

Also, in such system, no profits would be gained. There are no financial motives. We make a system of participation and where efforts are valued and rewarded. Also, we give members the chance to evaluate each others work, such that continuous improvement is possible.

Since everything is organized as one global society, it becomes much simpler to see the society as one large system, and from that perspective we can make new conclusions about how we can do it better globally. Our thinking is no longer limited by our own house or company, but expands to the entire society. Since we remove any and all unnecessary work, only the work that really matters is being kept - and thus everything you do has a reason, and it’s not just for yourself or for your boss, but for everyone. And that makes working much more fun.

A challenge

Building such society is not easy. The people participating in such society should be able to focus their minds on the well-being of the entire group and should be able to act as group. They should be capable of communicating in constructive ways, share ideas and cooperate to turn these into reality.

It is also very important to discover our mistakes, admit them and improve on them. It is important that every individual that participates in such society develops himself or herself as a person as such to improve common well-being. If each person only focuses on their own agenda, we only get stuck in a mess of conflicting interests, and that’s exactly what happens in today society, and the large problem from which it suffers.

I hope though, by setting up this organization, that we can show the world that it can also be done differently, that it makes sense to work differently, that there exist solutions for the problems that we have but that we will have to get out of our shell, stop blaming others for our problems and start building our own future.

Only with deep cooperation and a global vision we can bring real change to the world, and that’s not only a challenge from an organizational point of view, but also from a personal view. But with the right attention for the right qualities, we can certainly get it right.

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