Transition Proposals Towards a Commons-Oriented Economy and Society

In the context of the Ecuadorian transition project towards a open commons-based knowledge society, see Floksociety.org, and to complement the prior analysis of three competing economic models in the age of peer production, I have formulated some transition proposals, on how to get from Phase 2, emerging peer production in the context of the dominance of cognitive and financial capitalism, to Phase 3, a mature peer production economy associated with a ethical economy and a partner state.

Here are the preliminary proposals, penned down on September 23, and which will be improved on a ongoing basis:

The (Partner) State

* The State becomes a Partner State, which aims to enable and empower autonomous social production, which it also regulates in the context of common good concerns

* The State strives to maximal openness and transparency

* The State systematizes participation, deliberation, and real-time consultation with the citizens

* The social logic moves from ownership-centric to citizen-centric

* The state de-bureaucratizes through the commonification of public services and public-commons partnerships

* Public service jobs are considered as a common pool resource and participation is extented to the whole population

* Representative democracy is extended through participatory mechanisms (participatory legislation, participatory budgetting, etc..)

* Representative democracy is extended through online and offline deliberation mechanisms

* Representative democracy is extended through liquid voting (real-time democratic consultations and procedures, coupled to proxy voting mechanisms)

* Taxation of productive labour, enterpreneurship and ethical investing is minimized; taxation of the production of social and environmental goods is minimized ; taxation of speculative unproductive investments is augmented; taxation on unproductive rental income is augmented; taxation of negative social and environmental externalities is augmented

* The State sustains civic commons-oriented infrastructures and ethical commons-oriented market players

* The State reforms the traditional corporate sector to minimize social and environmental externalities

* The state engages in debt-free public monetary creation and supports a structure of specialized complementary currencies

The Ethical Economy

* Creation of a commons and common good oriented social / ethical / civic / solidarity economy

* Ethical market players coalesce around commons of productive knowledge, eventually using peer production and commons-oriented licenses to support the social-economic sector

* Ethical market players integrate common good concerns and user-driven and worker-driven multistakeholder in their governance models

* Ethical market players move from extractive to generative forms of ownership; open, commons-oriented ethical company formats are privileged

* Ethical market players practice open book accounting and open supply chains to augment non-market coordination of production

* Ethical market players create a territorial and sectoral network of Chamber of Commons associations to definte their common needs and goals and interface with civil society, commoners and the partner state

* With the help from the Partner-State, ethical market players create support structures for open commercialization, which maintain and sustain the commons

* Ethical market players interconnect with global productive commons communities (open design communities)and with global productive associations (phyles) which project ethical market power on a global scale

* The ethical market players adopt a 1 to 8 wage differential and minimum and maximum wage levels are set

* The mainstream commercial sector is reformed to minimize negative social and environmental externalities; incentives are provided that aim for a convergence between the corporate and solidarity economy

* Hybrid economic forms, like fair trade, social enterpreneurship, B-Corporations are encouraged to obtain such convergence

* Distributed microfactories for (g)localized manufacturing on demand are created and supported, in order to satisfy local needs for basic goods and machinery

* Institutes for the support of productive knowledge are created on a territorial and sectoral basis

* Education is aligned to the co-creation of productive knowledge in support of the social economy and the open commons of productive knowledge

The Commons Sector

* Creation of commons infrastructures for both immaterial and material goods; society is seen as a series of interlocking commons, that are supported by an ethical market economy and a Partner State that protects the common good and creates supportive civic infrastructures

* Local and sectoral commons create civil alliances of the commons to interface with the Chamber of the Commons and the Partner State

* Interlocking for-benefit associations (Knowledge Commons Foundations) enable and protect the various commons

* Solidarity Coops form public-commons partnerships in alliance with the Partner State and the Ethical Economy sector represented by the Chamber of Commons

* Natural commons are managed by public-commons partnership and based on civic membership in Commons Trusts

2 Comments Transition Proposals Towards a Commons-Oriented Economy and Society

  1. Bob Haugen

    Those are excellent strategic goals. The question remains, how to get from here to there? As in, the tactical steps.

    (I expect the Floksociety project to demonstrate many of them, at least for Ecuador, and as an example for others. Will continue to follow.)

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