About Sociocracy

Kees Boeke was the teacher of the children of Queen Juliana. In 1945 just after the end of the Second World he wrote a document in Dutch with the title “What have we learned and where to go“?

At the end of his analysis he comes to the conclusion that the main problem was Democracy. Before the Second World War the Democratic System was unable to solve the problems in Society. Members of Parliament were constantly discussing and blocking each others proposals snnothing really happened.

In this document he evaluates the period 1930-1945. It is impossible to translate the whole document in English. His analysis is impressive and sad to say very applicable to our current situation.

Kees Boeke proposed a new system called Sociocracy. Sociocracy is based on the practices of the Quakers. Just like the Quakers Kees Boeke believed that when people are inspired by the Holy Ghost or The Inner Light they will be guided to a state of “consent”.

His idea is to create “circles” of about 150 people and to close these circles in higher order circles when a decision has a big impact. Every circle has to take into account the higher good of the whole of all circles.

Kees Boeke formulated the basic Rules of Sociocracy.

1. The interests of all members must be considered, the individual bowing to the interests of the whole.

2. No action can be taken if there are no solutions found that everyone can accept.

3. All members must be ready to act according to these unanimous decisions.

Later the ideas of Kees Boeke were taken over by one of his pupils Gerard Endenburg. He applied sociocracy in his factories. Endenburg combined cybernetics and sociocracy.

He formulated new rules:

1. Consent governs policy decision-making. Consent means there are no argued and paramount objections to a proposed decision.

2. Circles are the primary governance unit. Circles are semi-autonomous and self-organizing. Within their domain, they make policy decisions; set aims; delegate the functions of leading, doing, and measuring to their own members; and maintain their own memory system and program of ongoing development.

3. Circles are connected by a double-link consisting of the functional leader elected by the next higher circle, and two or more representatives elected by the circle, all of whom participate fully in both circles.

4. People are elected to functions and tasks by consent after open discussion.

Sociocracy became a big success and has spread all over the world. It is, in my opinion, the best approach to solve the immense problems of our current time.


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