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Inspiration and sustainable progress for everyone in the world
In my personal opinion “knowledge” should be a common good for all people in the world, not just for those who can afford it.
Knowledge only matters when it is used
It hence has to flow freely to those places and people where it can be applied and prosper into positive human development, preferably “sustainable human progress“, which is the type of energy that the academy represents.
Freedom of information
Freedom of information distribution over internet is excellent but not exempt from unilateral disturbances, manipulation and information pollution. The human being lives in different realities of the consciousness, some artificially created by us ourselves. The responsibility to deal with information and its purpose is of the human being itself. Inspiration clustering, with the purpose of creating sustainable human progress by understanding life itself, is such responsibility with which we deal in STIR.
At STIR experiment with the different realities of human perception. We developed innovations in the human system’s complexity and evolution ourselves, based on a holistic view of human society and its interaction with its natural environment (Sustainocracy)
Others are inspired to learn about our approach
And we love to share for the benefit of humankind! But we are not the only ones producing change or developing sustainable progress, insight and best practice. We don’t see STIR as a limitation restricted to our experiments with reality and progress. We see it as part of a global process that seeks connection to produce new, unprecedented evolutionary steps in our approach to human wellness and prosperity without endangering ourselves in the process.
Everywhere around the world interesting and inspiring people are producing results in the field of sustainable progress. This deserves to be shared too. We can all learn from each other and try out the inspiration ourselves, no matter how complex. Global issues develop local solutions which can be applied globally.
To share the inspiration we use the facilities of the internet in combination with local dialogue (hub) around its potential application.
The free flow, selection and connection to STIR is created by its purpose:
STIR Purpose: Redefining and implementing system’s complexities and sustainable human progress.
By setting up STIR as a HUB (a room, good internet and people in to share information with) we can get the entire world to participate. STIR Academy offers the framework and purpose criteria, the inspiration network and international infrastructure. The HUB takes care of local public, the choices and translation to local initiatives and projects.
Example of our iwn development:
- Since 2005 I have personally organized over 25 encounters in zoo’s, business enterprises, nature, schools, etc to experiment with awareness development, new education, applied knowledge, etc. The one who learned most was I myself. I expressed my learning in 7 locally published books.
- Since 2009 I set up the STIR Foundation to take responsibility ourselves for the redefinition of human complexities and the transformative process of moving from one paradigm to another.
- In 2010 the first Sustainocratic ventures, involving government, science, business and large local civil populations were initiated: AiREAS, VE2RS and STIR. The learning continued, especially about the human complexity itself, prior to system’s thinking.
- In 2013 I stepped up to a holistic view of system’s reality, managing 4 traditional paradigms together into 1 for sustainable progress and harmonic wellness.
- The first online skype conference organised by STIR was in 2009 with Herman Wijffels (old World Bank chief) as online speaker. He referred to the changing world including finance and banking.
- The first international HUB was started in Madrid in 2012 but did not survive.
- The first HUB was started in Eindhoven in 2013. It started with one session per month in 2013. In 2014 we have 2 including international inspiration.
- Initiatives are developing in Barcelona, Budapest, Brussels, Taipee, Miami, enz, as well as city quarters in Eindhoven. Often the initiatives are started from the old paradigm of economic dependencies and fail. It is a local learning process to let go of the dominant old paradigm first.
On April 29th 2014 STIR participates through skype in the world congress on poverty Madagascar (see below).
How it works?
STIR works on the basis of free membership, reciprocity and commitment.
* Reciprocity means that if the STIR networks uses inspiration sessions from you, you get 1 to 1 sessions back for your own use, on call and mutual planning. So if you trade inspiration you will have 100s of free speakers at your disposal, else you pay a modest price.
* The real art is to do something with the inspiration locally in your own environment. We look for commitment to work together on change that affects the world and our societies positively.
The provisional website is: http://globalstir.wix.com./international/
Membership: Free of Charge (not free from commitment)
We are worldwide in a complex phase of transformation from an ancient old human operational reality into a totally new one. We see this happening with ourselves and the institutions that surround us. This Global Shift occurs in three big awareness steps (Quantum Leap in our consciousness).
Step 1: Recognizing the obsolescence of the old structure and its functioning.
This ancient reality places the human being inside a regional (country) political and economic confinement. There are various 100’s of such regional “country” realities across the world, each pretending still to manage their own identity with a lot of subsystems (counties, cities, business enterprises, etc) that function the same way. Over the past there was a large operational diversity (society systems) spread across the world. Since WW-II many assumed the political and economical system’s reality of consumer economics, creating a diplomatic and commercial network between the countries with open borders for economic exchange of products and human productivity. Consumption, money and debt systems are a common denominator.
Step 2: The awareness of the paradigms of nature
Since around 1970 already we become aware that the old reality was going to become obsolete. Consumption based economies and exponential population growth was going to reach a point of singularity. A new reality forced itself into our awareness: the natural limitations of planet Earth. The old reality entered into stress and crisis.
Shortage of natural resources became something to account for in productivity. The local government systems had to learn how to deal with the consequences on nature (human welfare diseases and effects of pollution and global warming) and migration of cultures. Consequence driven subeconomies were introduced demanding more consumption to finance the problems it is causing.
Our health started to become affected by pollution…. Migrations began to follow material wealth (people in search for securities and wellness) and poverty (business in search for financial competitiveness through low wages). Climate is affected and influenced. System and Nature develop a tension that produces awareness and transformative processes through vision, need and crisis.
We are now in the midst of this awareness building and transformative processes. The old reality and its obsolescence is causing stress across the world as we can see from this impressive visual compilation (take some time to observe the explosion of stress in the last couple of decades) of the evolution of conflicts from 1979 till 2012.
The individual human being ( you and me) is trapped in between with our own awareness processes. We need our society for securities but realize its obsolescence in current executive positioning. We (as human being) tend to dispute and even steps out of the old perception, to create a broader view and experiment with new realities through new awareness.
Institutions follow human leadership and transform through awareness and conflict.
Step 3: The holistic awareness and human organization
Consciousness boosts throughout the world and people combine wellness with responsibilities. Nature (the Universe) is recognized as dominant and human system need to adjust to become servant. Debt will cease to exist and new value systems emerge.
Sustainocracy is a step 3 pioneer
Sustainocracy is a new democracy based on step 3 awareness, creating operational experiments (s.a. AiREAS) within the step 1 country and business positioning with step 2 stress reality. It helps self aware business and government leaders program the transformation processes through proof of sustainable development and change.
Last Thursday Marco and I were invited to another city with our AiREAS initiative in Eindhoven (NL). It was interesting to observe how two different worldviews meet, interact and come together. For quite some time already we had been convinced that we were working on something unique with Sustainocracy . This encounter confirmed it once again in full reality.
Top technological value, no price list
The encounter had been established after a call from this city. They wanted to know if they could get access to the technology that was being developed by AiREAS? Our technology is the absolute best one can imagine in current state of the art technological evolution around environmental measurements (finedust, CO2, ozon, etc). Why was it so unique? Because it had been ideologically achieved within a sustainocratic process, a true co-creation.. This means that it involved directly the higher regional purpose of human health combined with the interests of a city council, the local population, scientific research with directly applied knowledge and applied business innovations. The technology had therefor not been conceived from a product point of view with a money driven motivation. Human health was our common multidisciplinary goal not money. The technology had to serve multiple purpose, not just city council policy making but also health research based on cross data, real time city dynamics analysis and transparent involvement of the local population with data and an explanation on what one can do to improve the local environment.
When the other city approached us we had not even established a price for the technology nor a sales structure to pass on the products within a typical commercial chain. The new technology was part of a purpose driven co-creating concept, not a stand alone product. In our working model (sustainocracy) technology was just a means not a goal and as such we would only be satisfied with the best we could achieve in multidisciplinary co-creation for the purpose of sustainable human progress in the region. The technology that we had developed today may well be the best available in the world but for us it is just a means we created to help achieve “the healthiest city of the world” in a sustainocratic way. It was hence “owned” by the entire AiREAS community and movement. Technology is likely to evolve further as our path along the line of sustainable human progress evolves too. What price do you attach to that? Wouldn’t it be easier for a new city to simply become member of the AiREAS community and its purpose, adjusting it to the local 4 local circumstances?
AiREAS has no personnel or hierarchy
The next difficulty was that AiREAS has no personnel, nor hierarchical organization of its own. AiREAS consists of the formalized co-creative venture to achieve healthy human environments through a sustainocratic cooperation. People are employed by the participating specialized institutions, not AiREAS. The general public participates through intrinsic motivating in their own city quarters by taking initiatives, not through an employment contract. The whole process involves already thousands of people in a purpose driven commitment yet no one in a hierarchy or on our payroll, not even me or Marco. We are in it as result driven professionals. No progress means no income for us either. How can we offer a product when there is no organization to back it up? We could only invite the new city to become a member of the movement and receive by consequence the technology together with the sustainocratic surroundings on a local for local basis.
When the city representatives mentioned that, in normal circumstances, they would have to tender for the technology it became easy for us to show that we could not participate. In AiREAS we have no client/supplier relationships, just a joint institutional and popular commitment to a goal of regional city health in which measurement is an essential but not conclusive instrument. This was also an eye opener for the people present and a new way of relating to reality. We were not there to sell anything. When we were asked to consider selling our technology we felt as if we were drawn back into the old world with its money driven structures, hierarchies, authorization processes, liabilities and bureaucratic difficulties. We did not want this. AiREAS wants to achieve health not money or power. Our authority lays in creating sustainable human progress, by facilitating it not by creating another bureaucracy around it.
An option we had now was to make the technology available through one of our money driven multinational partners against a royalty. This would provide the world with the technology without Sustainocracy. Many would prefer it that way even though we would eventually show that only Sustainocracy can solve the complexity of healthy regional environments and progress. The royalties would help us with means for reinvestment in our true purpose without the need to ask the local government for support through tax income. For local government it is of interest because they are part of the local reinvestment team, this time without having to challenge their own limited resources (in decrease too due to crises). We (Marco and I) would be challenged to avoid becoming yet again a money driven entity ourselves and remain in our role of providing progress rather than speculation. The uniqueness as well as the pitfalls of our creation became clear.
Involvement of the entire local population
In AiREAS we develop the purpose driven involvement of all people in a region, residents and visitors, private and professionals. In fact, AIREAS itself was initiated by me as a totally independent and free civilian around human responsibilities, not material or institutional complexities. The link between measurements and proactive public initiatives, facilitated by a sustainocratic venture between institutions, to achieve healthy dynamics through culture rather than regulation, was new too. Business, science and government were seen as instruments for sustainable human progress, not the cause but the means.
This holistic approach, in which all instruments for progress work together around a human driven purpose, was unique in our current global society. It was something that people from the old world of institutional dominance and hierarchies had to get used to. Some current institutions would fit in naturally, others would need to change while others would only play a role in the old money driven world and disappear in the sustainocratic reality. So be it. It is all part of creating a new biodiversity of human activities. We also see already totally new institutions arise around the powerful platform of local Sustainocracies.
Indeed there is always a lot happening in a consumer driven democracy from a public involvement point of view. The difference in a Sustainocracy is that the initiatives are not “to be authorized or regulated” but facilitated towards the common goal. When the population takes the lead the authorities offer their position of authority to enlarge purpose driven experimentation rather than authorizing them. This creates a totally different dynamics in a city with a proactive interaction between regional development of infrastructures and public initiatives around their own health and sustainable progress. Local content and involvement eliminates bureaucracy and society gets into a totally new phase of self-sufficient participation. The cost savings are tremendous and the value driven social and technological innovations get a boost. Local involvement is value driven and values are shared together. People learn to interact in a purpose driven way instead of competing and selling each other their talents without sharing key responsibilities. Now talents need to partner up for a common intention and achieve steps together. So does the harmonic relationship with our environment due to the direct relationship between living green, food, mobility, housing, social cohesion, health, etc. in AiREAS.
The relationship between measurements and human health is then not to evaluate the consequences of health or money related policies. It becomes an instrument to co-creatively and transparently measure progress through public proactive initiatives, organic social innovation, applied science and technological innovations.
New social order and learning process
With sustainable human progress defined as “working together on a healthy, vital, safe, self-sufficient human society within the context of our ever changing natural environment” the social organisation transforms. When working together the relationship needs to evolve based on trust and commitment while we come from a society that is based on exactly the opposite. To achieve a new social order in another city we cannot ask government take the initiative. They are the authority that needs to step back a little and no other institution can take its place. In Eindhoven I invited the old world to work with me in the new world. The “I” represented the holistic human being within a fragmented world that used the human being instead of serving its evolutionary purpose. The “I” became both Marco and I as a dual team at the center representing the interaction between the universal ethics of “To Be” and the professional “To Do” that produce the sustainable human progress in the model of human complexities.
In another city Marco and I could hardly take that responsibility because it requires the intense networking with people who go through an individual process of change when they are invited to the process. Each person has to learn the basics of Sustainocracy and the individual role in such venture as a person and a professional. When the individual is convinced, then the institutions themselves go through a similar process. It does require powerful people to be able to do all this, even if it is seen as an experiment. It is impossible to conduct this operational process at a distance. We need local independent and free Sustainocrats to place themselves at the center of the local process. The role of the Sustainocrat is one of connecting all forces in the multidisciplinary format to the common goal and translate idealistic intentions into practical projects. It is a position without power yet with great authority and responsibility. Every region where a sustainocratic venture appears has its unique opportunities to create value of their own that could also benefit the rest of the world. It should first however benefit themselves making the region the perfect reference for their own sustainable progress. Within the local venture all the participating parties are equal without dominance or hierarchy. This is achieved by the Sustainocrat that represents the spirit of progressive democratic and spiritual freedom of humankind.
I am establishing a global STIR Academy to help the new sustainocrats and the local co-creative initiatives. This will make the process easier and smoother as this new operational structure of society gathers knowledge and experiences to be shared. The STIR Academy is also sustainocratic, just like AiREAS.
A network of Sustainocracies
I envisage a global network of purpose driven local for local sustainocracies such as AiREAS. The concept of co-creating “the healthiest city of the world” through local civilian involvement and commitment in their own city quarters of residence, is equally the basis of “the healthiest living planet” in the universe. The working model of Sustainocracy makes it potentially the global multinational of permanently applied social and technological innovation without a single person on the payroll and all the 7 billion people contributing in value driven processes, sharing the values abundantly among each other.
The current 40000 involved in Eindhoven (NL), the proven ability to co-create state of the art complex technology, the proven social and institutional commitment for sustainable human progress, attracted after just 6 months at least one new city. When we continue like this and assure the quality of our progression, the global multinational for sustainable human progress will soon be a fact. It confirms people in a format where authority proves itself to the world as a progressive facilitating power for the benefit of 7 billion contributors to their own sustainable harmony and progressive stability.
By then the human world will have changed from a huge risk in chaos to persistent wellness through applied human excellence and higher awareness.
The current economic structure of our global society is based on consuming goods rather than using them. What is the difference? And why would the consumer type of economy be obsolete? And why should it be replaced by a user type of economy? What consequences does it have for our daily lives? And what consequences will we suffer if we do not change?
Throughout the explanation I will fall back on a useful example: mobility.
Sustainocracy is such a purpose driven economy based on usage. But first…
In this type of economy we simply purchase whatever we need for a living. This means that we take ownership of the goods. Consumer economy has evolved ever since the start of industrialization. In order to make products available to the consumers around the world we need to install an infrastructure for manufacturing the supplies, retail outlets, waste management of packaging and obsolete stuff, financial systems for payments, etc. The relationship between the consumers who purchase daily needs, suppliers offering products and services, money systems providing cash and loans, governments providing infrastructures and regulations, is based on a composition of value added resources (products), logistics (distribution), financial profits and taxes.
A business network that sells the products focuses on profitable consumption, the government that provides infastructures concentrates on taxable consumption.
Business in each step of the chain needs more and more profits to attend the increasing demands of shareholders. Shareholders own the business and value their ownership through the return they get on their investment. As a consequence the business wants volume sales and cost reduction in a competitive environment. As a side effect this chain optimization causes increased environmental pollution. The effects on human nature are also negative. It causes constant purchase stimulus, creating a mentality of greed, thirst for financial means to purchase more and a mentality of hoarding. There is a growing degree of individualism, distrust, criminality and psychological disorder around “the having”.
Governments see an increased need for infrastructures for logistics and retail activities but also suffer the negative consequences in health, psychological disorders and environmental pollution. The latter is demanding investments in rules, bureaucracy, police, health care, etc. This produces a steady increase in tax requirements along the chain to finance the growing social responsibility around purchasing power. Government hence stimulates further consumption through economies of growth in order to be able to finance the consequences (dual economy).
Obsolete type of economy
Meanwhile the entire structure of society around fragmented money driven and dependent consumer interests, shows a steady increase in problems, such as the reduced availability of natural resources for the increased global productivity, destruction of the environment to facilitate more logistics, the pollution of our habitat and increased global competition. Consequence driven investments in a greener society do not reduce the push for more consumption, on the contrary, it stimulates it even more to cover the costs of those investments. Business and government both use it as marketing arguments to stimulate the economy of growth even further. It all helps to delay disaster but it cannot avoid it. Overconsumption in a consumer economy has a structural damaging effect and leads irrevocably to crises.
Each of the fragmented pillars (government, business, etc) depends on the other’s growth, stimulating it according, increasing the problems faster than solving them internally in every fragmented layer or “slice” of interest. All the crises around the world are a consequence of an obsolete consumption driven system.
The problem of this consumption driven economy is the chain of exchange of ownership all the way up to the end-user. On and between each of the shackles in the chain the business and government interests are keeping the system in place out of self interest. No one in the chain takes responsibility (nor can be individually blamed) for the effects on humanity and our planet. In between the shackles shortages appear that lead to speculation and further value destruction in the chain, increading economies while decreasing quality of life.
Mobility is a consequence of our consumer economy. We privately need mobility for work, social activities, family logistics, recreation and purchasing goods. For each of our requirements we have a whole variety of mobile alternatives, instrumentally at hand. We have a car, a bike, a scooter, maybe even a caravan, a trailer, etc. We can only use one of these instruments at any one time but possess it for our usage at will during the day. We consider this type of mobility part of our democractic freedom. But do we need to own it?
We seem unaware about the amount of resources that we block by keeping up a stock of individual mobility in our own ownership. The amount of space we need to store the options is tremendous, while not in use, while in use and when we arrive at our destiny. Not to mention the different types of infrastructures that are needed to provide safe usage. It all had an important impact on our economics for many decades. But also on our environment and health. This was countered by the growth of a consequences-economy in which healthcare techhnology managed to stretch our lives against a huge healthcare cost.
Today we face the problem that polution, scarcity of natural resources and usage of productive landscape is so big that it has consequences for human health, social stability and sustainable human progress.
If we would change our economy to one where we do not possess our goods but use them when needed, a lot of the problems would be solved. Why don’t we simply change to the new system if this is better for our environment and human health? We cannot because:
- We are used to “having in possession” all our alternatives
- Our society is based on the profit and tax structure related to purchasing, not the usage, to finance itself
The first has to do with mentality and the second with our social complexity. The economy is structured around our culture of possessions not for usage. If we want to change that we need to break up the chain, alter our culture and change our economic system all together. That is extermely difficult to do. This has significant consequences for our society. Let us simply look at the two issues I mentioned.
1. Mentality – culture of “having”
We possess everything simply because our society is based on that culture. If we decide to relinquish possession we could not yet make use of alternatives because their is no reliable infrastructure based on that usage. When I want to move from A to B and have no car or bike available to me then I have to rely on walking, a neighbor or the public transportation system. In very dense populations this may well be organized to an extend but in my small town I need to walk a certain distance to find a bus that goes every 30 minutes. Taxis are expensive as they do not just charge the fair of my travel from A to B, they also charge their own fair just to come to pick me up. A bus would be fine but it goes only so often. Meanwhile I am used to getting my transportation instantly by walking to my car or bike at my fron door.
So if I would want to get rid of my ownership I at least would want to have a reliable equivalent at hand. If I do not own but use then the service of usage has to become better than me as an owner.
The consumer society that I live in also requires that I travel between urban centers. The train system has shown important flaws, especially when we have extreem weather. I hate to see myself as single father, with a responsibility at home, stuck on a freezing train station without being able to get home to attend my children. Having my own means at least gives me a sense of control. Not that it is a guarantee that I get there but at least I have my own hands on the steering wheel. I have instant choices. And that feeling of independence is important to me.
Mentality also has to do with psychology.
Of course I understand that usage instead of property is important from a natural resource or space point of view. And I would be very willing to change my mentality if, and only if, my sense of freedom, security, choice and instant availability would be guaranteed. Ownership provides me with this sense of availability at all times, despite the destructive consequences for my environment. I am conscious of it but also have my selfish attitude. I am willing to jump on my bike when the weather is good, when I feel safe, but do not feel the need or obligation simply because our planet is in jeopardy. Who am I? My neighbors need also their consciousness building. When I see them buying and parking a car in our street for every family member my motivation to relinquish my comfort first has come to a minimum. “Them first” I would be inclined to say, or all at once.
Mentality shift has hence to do with multiple factors, not just my own consciousness and sense of responsibility. It has to do with availability of reliable alternatives, an equivalent sense of comfort and recognition of my efforts (I am not alone). Usage is not just confined to the mobility issue, it has to do with all sustainocratic processes around local four local sustainable human progress (food, security, health, wellness and education). When that is organized I would be pleased to try it out, fearfully because of lack of trust, but responsably as a global conscious citizen.
So change of mentality requires purpose driven cooperation between institutional AND civil interests. Both have to work together to make it happen.
In fact, in an economy based on usage we can learn to respect the usage of our natural resources in a reciprocal way. To do so we would need to address again the essentials of our existence within the context of our natural environment. Sustainocracy is all about that. If we use our environment effectively and with affection we can assure continuity of our existence. But to do so we need to give back what we have taken when we are done. That is the way nature works and it works exceptionally well. In fact, that is the way life and death works also in humankind. When we are born we use material from our environment for our carnal existence and growth. When we die we give it back to our environment through a burial or crematorial. Why wouldn’t we do that with all the other things that we use to serve or please us?
We should but we don’t, simply because we are not organized that way. To do so we need to change all our institutions, their way of functioning, as well.
2. Profit & Tax transformation
When we look again at mobility as significant example we see recently (last decade, with a push forward sinds about 2008) a rapid tendency in urban transformation. This is caused by the expected sharp decline of fosil fuel availability and the rise in cost price. 55% of humankind lives in cities nowadays depending on mobility for everything they need.
Industries and governments that have relied for over 100 years on the profits and taxability of cars as a consumable and luxury item. They are now facing an automotive crisis, starting the transformation within a dense urban setting. The maths of car sales and consumption of fuels does not add up anymore in a social and environmental context for the long term. Old business lobbies still remained strong for a while due to the amount of labour and financial interests in this traditional sector but eventually room has been created to develop alternatives. We see now the tendency of new local for local alternatives in mobility with great creativity at business and governmental level. Still, this is confined to the economy of scale presented by the urban concentrations. It could become much more affective if fragmented policy making would be replaced by holistic sustainocratic cooperations.
The problem any government faces is that the car with all its fuel consumption was one of the biggest taxable instruments to finance the public administration. It was a real cash cow. Just like housing, energy, communications and food supplies. Now that this income is slowly evaporating a dual problem arises. Sticking to the example of mobility we see that new types of transportation, traffic and mobility require new infrastructures, which is a large investment. Meanwhile we are not entirely sure in which way mobility will evolve. This is also the case for any other human consumable. The old taxable cash cows disappear but nothing is definite to replace them. But the old costs of society keep growing.
How do you transform taxation from a consumer to a user economy?
Why would taxation need to remain the same? From a theoretical point of view it does not need to be the same at all. A new society would demand a new way of structuring government and by consequence also its finance. But you cannot instantly transform government and its dominated structures s.a. police, defence, infrastructures, justice, education or health care. They have been build up for many decades, centuries even. Restructuring involves large hierarchical structures of people, regulations, laws, positions of power, etc. It takes not only time. It demands general support, vision, hard work and accepting the psychology of change as a common transformative factor in which fear plays the most common human factor.
In a democracy a transformation is even more demanding and probably even impossible because of the fragmented party politics that have grown far from a common national purpose. Also people who vote tend to vote for what they have lost and not what they can achieve by working together.
When we take sustainocracy as a new structure for society at least all 4 pillars of society work out ideas together.
We all realize that the traditional tax structure and government expenditure needs to be intensely revised. We see that there is a long term continuation of the effects of the old consumer structure on human health and the environmental polution. This affects again the long term government expenditure requirement in health care, and that is not backed by sufficient tax income in the short term of the new structure. Either public debt increases further, or….we all take responsibility (sustainocracy).
Everything needs to transform at the same time.
Also, business needs to transform. When new entrepreneurial initiatives appear that substitute the old traditional ones we see an equivalent need for transformation of social financing and government responsibility. Business is much more inclined to assume local responsibility for reliable public services in which circular economy of usage replaces the linear economy of ownership. Government is then forced also to change from a regulating and consequence driven authority to facilitating structure that introduce flexibility, transparency in change and cooperation. On the one hand this would attend the uncertainty of the future. On the other hand one needs to spread the investment over all parties and not just through governmental channels. Taxation cannot cover both the government transformation AND social transformation all by itself. Today we see many governments already with a rising national debt beyond reasonable proportions, just to avoid change. More debt to induce change would be unacceptable. Moreover we concluded that a society based on usage requires the transformation of everything, not just government.
That is where sustainocracy comes in and places the responsibility with all social parties involved. One single connecting specialist or pair of persons will do the trick. Me for instance. Taxation in the long term in an economy of usage can have similar proportions than the economy of consumption today. The money would however be used in a different way. But in the short term the tax income is much less. We see then a tremendous need to coordinate such transformation step by step in order to avoid a total financial chaos. Tax can then be something more than just money. In fact we all become local for local responsible for the circular economy of usage, creating the added value ourselves and sharing the benefits. In the consumer economy we see that people simply need money to keep the economy going. In an economy of usage people need to invest their talent and personal energy to create things to share (s.a. food, energy, housing, etc). Money is less important. Much more important is the level of co-creation.
This requires vision and coordination that cannot come from just government itself nor any other institutional structure. They are all too dependent on each other through the old chain of interrelated financial dependencies. The current institutional world would sooner drop into a huge crisis than take the initiative to transform together. That introduces the new connective leadership (no power, lots of authority) of members of the sustainocratic STIR Foundation. They assume the role of new purpose driven leadership that allows the institutional partners to join the challenge based on independent equality, rather than dependent inequality. Each participates with its one levels of power, authority and added value.
The challenge is hence extremely local, yet global at the same time, geographical and vertically institutional, and very human as well. It affects for instance the way multinational business develops and transforms from a global manufacturer to a local facilitator. Maybe in between business can still develop a mix of centralized manufacturing specialization and local holistic service responsibilities, with forward and backward logistics and reuse of resources. But if the transformation is not coordinated with business and governance involvement at the same time it will not happen.
As a consequence we can very well justify the complexity of the transformation from a logical and even scientifical point of view but not easily from a practical, operational one. We cannot pinpoint anyone today as a sole holistic responsible for sustainable human progress, unless one totally independent person stands up to do so (like I do in Eindhoven). The huge material interests that still make up the old world of the having, the consumer economy, have a tremendous blocking impact on the level of transformative change. This is being countered by a strong building up of explosive (agression) and creative (new initiatives) stress. It is becoming much better for the establishment to join sustainocracy and gain again instruments of effective power then to remain trying to patch up the old system our of unsustainable self interest.
Organically change may occur when old age parties find each other in purpose driven sustainocratic missions. But change will also occur through crises en chaos when powerful structures insist on their self interests beyond the limits of the ethically reasonable. There is a balance that needs to be found between the controled temporary maintenance of the old and the speed of change towards the new society. The process can be extremely dangerous for human kind yet can also be changed positively if sustainocracy is accepted by global institutional leaders, together.
The theoretical and ideological need for transformation between a consumer and user type of society and economy is beyond dispute. It can be morally, ethically and scientifically proven. The complexity of both mentality change and transformation of institutional positioning is however so large and significant that it takes local and global leadership to make it happen. As such the existing hierarchical leadership is not independent enough from their fragmented structures of power. Holistic leadership only exists at individual human level, cannot be institutionalized, just accepted as linking sustainocrat.
The fragmented institutional leadership, no matter how powerful in the old world, will eventually have to join the table of sustainocratic leadership. Institutions are human instruments, like a hamer, a screwdriver or a shovel. If we cannot get humankind to stand above its instruments we will face a huge humanitarian disaster. It is up to the human being in charge of such institutional instruments to accept taking seat at the table of human sustainocratic leadership.
The sustainocratic initiatives that we take in Eindhoven and Holland could be a source of inspiration and guidance to avoid human disaster and make change happen in a peaceful way. Then global business, governmental and scientific leadership would have to accept sustainocracy as I present it and join the table for the sake of their own leadership. Since such combination is unprecedented in the world it is hard to establish for the first time. But not imposible as I have done it before. If it is posible on a local for local level for the first time we should be able to address the issue on a global basis too.
Worth a try? Why not….Who should be at the table? Who cares to help?
With the kickoff of the first sustainocratic initiative in the city of Eindhoven (the Netherlands) the first step is made to create a “purpose driven economy”. What is the difference with what we have today? And why is it important for the rest of the world to follow the experiment in Eindhoven and, better still, start one of their own?
Our current economies are not purpose but consequence driven. The human being is positioned as compulsory consumer. The entire institutionalized society is focused on creating a mountain of wealth around this consumer that gives a sense of abundance at all times. The only way to access this abundance is through financial means. Some of these means are individually obtained through the production, logistics and sales infrastructure necessary to maintain this mountain of abundance. Other get paid out of the hierarchies funded through taxation on this consumer organization. Or through speculation on material resources contained in this “having” type of culture. And finally also debt.
The consequences of such consumer economy show a growing tendency of (negative) influences that need attention through investments. Think of infrastructures, healthcare organizations, police, etc attending the attitude of greed and its effects on the human being, physically and mentally. This also shows an exponential growth which is equally reflected in the world economy through the costs of societies. At the same time we see our environment and human behavior deteriorate fast.
The model of economies of growth purely based on unlimited consumption and the consequences thereof, is obsolete because we use our natural resources wrongly, destroy our environment, sicken ourselves and eventually eliminate our evolutionary chances.
Fragmented complex society
We know this now, including scientific proof, but have difficulties in changing the course of society. We created a very complex mesh of fragmented financial entities with dependencies and interests among each other on which powers and influences are being based. Each institutions has a perceived right to exist and defend its own interests. There is not one single institution that takes full responsibility for sustainable human progress. The institutional mesh is based on fragmented self interest and competition.
Key is the understanding that no institutional specialization can take holistic responsibility for human safety, health or sustainable progress. It is the human being itself that needs to take this responsibility. What went wrong in the consequence driven consumer economy was that the human being delegated its wellness through fragmented institutionalized structures that grew into tremendously inflated organs like an abscess or cancer would do on a sick body. Instead of serving humankind they try to serve themselves. This fragmented type of human organization is institutionally sick with the risk of the cancers to develop themselves further and destroy our evoutionary chances.
Purpose driven economies
The big difference with the old consumer economy is that it is not based on consumption and growth but on true value creation (purpose). It is not based on massive productivity and distribution but on local content. It is a circular type of economy where “purpose” is defined according local human needs, obtained through local effort and using local resources in a circular way.
To achieve a purpose driven economy an intense transformation is needed. But it can be done using the same institutional instruments of the old society. Each participant needs to cure its cancer like development and abuse and become functional again within the scope of local for local requirements. It requires a different mentality and true transformative leadership in each institution involved.
Abundance is not presented through logistic channels from around the world, it is created by local cooperative efforts. In such local cooperation we see the four traditional human values come together: attitude, creativity, environment and wisdom. Those values in the old economy were split into separate institutions that do not act locally but globally, not in an integrated way but based on self interest, greed and fragmented excellence. Now we bring this global expertise back to the local context.
Using what we have learned
The great advantage of today is that the old consequence driven consumer economy has left us with a huge amount of accumulated experience and material knowledge thanks to the concentrated specialized, fragmented functions of expertise that developed over time. This would never have occurred if this phase of humankind had not taken place. For a long time it was very constructive. Now it has become destructive.
We hence do not criticize our past but use the best of its elements in our new progress. We can of course be critical to those old time forces that try to prevent us from creating purpose driven progress. It is just a matter of time for that opposition to disappear. Eventually the purpose driven economies will develop there where the old one has become obsolete, entered into a crisis, providing room for renewal, not just in a physical, organizational sense but especially emotionally, spiritual and rationally when people become aware.
Complex transformative process
It is a complex process that is typically developed locally and bottom up with executive support to make it happen. The reason that it happened in Eindhoven first and not yet in another region is simply because this small Dutch town unites the essential ingredients to make it happen. What are these ingredients:
- Awareness at executive level
- Open democracy of true equality
- Level of education and experience
- The right people at the right time
These qualities produce the necessary flexibility that can address the future with adaptive determination in a complex modern world. People take responsibility individually, convince their surroundings to support change and find ways to make it happen. The purpose is found in the essentials of human existence: food, health, security, wellness (housing, energy, etc) and knowledge. When it becomes clear that the global consequence driven consumer economy is obsolete speed is required to create a new sense of reality and responsibility, including a change in behavior. When the time of old abundance is over, new abundance needs to be created, preferably on time.
Wellness is not a cost or right but the result of a responsibility and hard work (purpose) together. When circumstances change stability is found in change too. In a sustainocracy the purpose driven economy is initiated together. We do this by making human wellness a purpose driven issue of the local population with the support of the accumulated institutional excellence and enhancing potential.
Purpose driven economic development based on sustainocratic complexities is needed to save humankind from the present day destructive expectations caused by the consequence driven consumer economy. If not we will face disaster. Yet if we assume responsibility individually and institutionally we also face a huge transformative challenge that will upset everything that we have known so far. The choice between destruction or working together on a healthier perspective is easy for me. I have become self aware and dedicated more than a decade to come to these views and initiatives. It is a start, giving comfort that humankind has a choice indeed. A choice that simply depends on one own and not someone else. But I realize that it is a difficult one, not only when one has to make it, but also for me to reach out to the world and make the choice known to all. If one does not know than no choice will be made. My personal challenge is hence multiple. Make it happen for myself, provide proof to my surroundings and reach out to all of you with sufficient clarity that you take sufficient confidence in the course that I have taken in order to let go of old securities and create new ones for yourselves and your direct surroundings.
When I traveled to Madrid this week (june 2012) to present AiREAS as a sustainocratic solution for the city problems with air polution the very first reaction of government executives was the traditional and classic public negation. “We have no air polution problem!”. This was interesting because I had just landed in the dense smog of the city and have information that Brussels threatens with sanctions if certain norms are not complied with in 2015. I also know that the local government has been trying to do its best to address the problem but that the issues go beyond the complexity of government regulatory authority and consequence driven measures.
The problem most government officials have is that they are so used to cover up their impotence around truly complex issues, publically claiming that they are in control and things will get better somewhere in the future, that they feel automatic resistence when someone walks in with a new proposition. This we see also in the world of finance. The traditional blind negation of an economic bubble, ignoring it until the bubble blew up in everyone’s face in 2008, was exaactly the same. When negation is not posible anymore because of undeniable proof the next psychological phase is entered: the one of disbelief and urgent correction. Then the negation continues. A quick massive capital injection should solve the problems overnight. 4 years and many billions of money later we all see that the problems continu.
When I got home from Madrid I watched financial analists on TV explain for the first time why the capital injected was only pushing the problems forward but not solving them. This remarkable first announcement of acceptance was a great relief to me. Of course, all huge capital injections had given the rats to cash their risks and leave the ship befor sinking, but still. It indicated to me that the phase of resistance to change and negotition for recovery of lost financial stability was ending.
The next phase (following my own model of cyclic phases of awareness and human development) is the one of fear. The large financial institutions had recovered their long term loans against public debt so that the institutions would not go broke. The citizens only had democratic rights and fear. A few 10K extra debt per person was institutionally acceptable. Of course, the public itself was never asked. It is all a game of big financial interests and liabilities played over the back of unaware masses of people. Institutions now need not fear anymore. Their power play is now over the civilians which hardly get organized to oppose and which can be submitted still under the pressures of financial law of debt.
Then the acceptance of the crisis and need of total renewal is opened. This openess is what I have been waiting for as it announces the total culture change needed to address the shaping of a new paradigm and corresponding new complex social structures such as sustainocracy. The crisis is reaching the general public now definitely. Capital injections saved the speculanting institutions but not society. The problem of greed was resolved and now poverty could stand up and protest.
But in Spain, from a sustainable progress point of view, the government executives were still hiding between their wall of negation. This will be the case in every government around the world. Reluctance to let go of old authorities and structures is largest when no alternative is know.Experts are consulted from inside the system only. Expertise from outside, like the one’s I am offering, are not recognized let alone taken seriously. One will fight against change simply because one does not know where to change into. When I presented sustainocracy in Madrid the first reaction was defensive but the seed has been planted. Before my presentation they had no choice, now they do, just like the population. Just like in Holland before, it will do its psychological work (like this blog), and some time in the near future the officials will lower their defences and accept shyly the hand that I reach out to them from the new world.
We are reaching the natural point of a psychological break through, because resistence does not seem to work but also because an alternative shines through at the end of the tunnel. I hope to find enough executive interest to join me in a world changing congres on 12.12.12 to let the crisis behind us and definitively open up to sustainocracy around the world. Sustainable human progress is more important after all than keeping up artificial, obsolete systems, even if they are called politics or banks. Capital injections did not bring back stability, it just saved some banks for some time.
This has become a long blog again. I introduce a solution for all humanitarian problems in the world and all related crisis. It requires a lot of explanation because it involves all current institutional powers in a new setting. And finally comes back to the power of our individual selves. Soon I will publish a booklet on the issue but my sense of urgency is so big that I cannot wait to reach out to those of you who can become already changers of the world after reading this. For humankind it could be the most important blog ever as long as I can reach out to you soul and make you aware. Please take some time to absorb the information and place your own self in perspective. See what happens when you suddenly realize that humankind could get to depend on your own next steps. It is fun AND a huge responsibility. Can you handle it? That is up to you. I am ready to help you when you are.
The destructive force of our institutions
Over the years we have grown dependent on institutional activities because of the impact they have on our lives. The unique capacity of an institution is that it can enlarge a single activity into huge proportions. A single human being cannot do that. We have grown to depend on the institutions because they provide us luxury articles, financial means, governance, jobs with related salaries, scientific knowledge, etc.
Most current institutional structures of today were born already some 150 to 100 years. The conditions in the human world were right back then to allow such fragmented focus to occur with the related growth of institutionalized power. Still now the discussions in this world only talk about growth and more growth as a single sign of strength. Due to this fragmented focus these organizations can only take responsibility for their own small field of highly specialized attention. They started to relate via this specialization to compliment each other in their objectives. A manufacturing company in the 19th century would have its own transportation system, energy supply, uniform making unit for their personnel, etc. But gradually in the 20th century the further specialization allowed institutions to focus on their core business and select suppliers to outsource their surrounding needs. In the middle of the 20th century the patchwork of specialized institutions because so large and so competitive in their mutual interaction that a chain of dependencies appeared and with it new techniques of managing the chain.
Due to the focus on fragmented institutionalized interests the awareness for “the whole” disappeared entirely. Things like pollution, usage of natural resources or humanitarian issues became subject to competitive policies. Institutional survival became more important than the consequences of such survival decisions. Non of these consequences could be challenged by any single authority. What authority should do that? A local government has no global authority to regulate. Yet they do have a dependence for economic growth, imports and exports as well as labor and tax perspectives. Global authorities on the other hand have no formal jurisdiction in the countries or in the institutionalized business enterprises and banking policies. They may have a bureaucratic influence on awareness (like VN resolutions) and certain fragmented authority on addressing common institutionalized interests (like military actions in Afghanistan or embargos on certain countries).
As fragmentation of power grows further, the chain of interdependence becomes more complex. Despite the competitive fragmentation and specialization each individually could grow due to globalization of markets. The competitive shakes outs would start the intense optimization processes in each of the institutions to remain competitive and attractive in the chain. As time went by we see each of them weaken in quality and strengthen in financial speculation. CEO’s and Country presidents became bankers and debt managers rather than protectors of value driven identities.
The overall shortage of resources started to demand its toll on the global organization of giants that could not feed themselves anymore on natural value creation. The liberalization of money from a valuable collateral (s.a. gold) allowed speculation to flourish as only remaining resource to sustain institutional fragmentation and growth. Access to the available resources became available to the highest bidder. Countries who wanted their populations to survive while active with some labor and high debt programs had to grow their debt themselves. The growth of institutions is still the blind common culture of executives and politicians but growth is already for a long time not possible anymore. Not as a natural process of value creation anyway. The only financial growth that can be achieved is through speculation around shortages but this is controlled only by the powerful and has nothing to do with the general public anymore. They are just manipulated to accept a debt they did not ask for and that solves nothing. Humanity is in the hands now of institutionalized, destructive, fragmentary focused financial robots that have no morality nor sense of responsibility except their own self interests, creating crisis after crisis, chaos upon chaos.
Now we go back to the beginning of this blog. The true power of an institution is its possibility to enlarge any fragmented specialization to huge proportions. Their handicap is that they cannot take responsibility other than for their own piece of specialized power. That goes for regional governments, business enterprises, educational institutions, etc, etc. None can take responsibility for true human values yet they all have interest in it because they are part of the institutional survival. Without consuming, demanding, debt creating, voting or working public the institutions will eventually die.
So in one way or another any institution has the intrinsic need to connect again to integral human values but cannot do that for the whole, just for a small part of it, competing for it. So when we talk about the taking of responsibility for human sustainable progress no one can or will stand up to take responsibility other than maybe some local politicians. They tend to promise responsibility that they cannot handle because it s beyond their control. They try to solve it in four year periods which many do not complete, by raising taxes and public debt with solving anything.
Only one can take responsibility and that is the pioneer. It seems funny that with all those incredibly big and seemingly powerful institutions the sole responsibility of human progress could lie in the hands of a bunch of pioneers. But it is true and makes perfect sense.
The robotic institutions can be our enemy when we see their unconscious destructive force while preserving their self interest in their fragmented world of material power, but they can become our friends when we can get to use their institutional powers of expansion in a proper way.
Thanks to the de-institutionalizing powers of a crisis, in which the organizations need to go into survival mode, decreasing in size due to the lack of resources to draw from, they become also often sensitive for new ventures and responsibilities in which their field of expertise can excel. This is an opportunity for the pioneer but also for the institutions. How does it work?
The pioneer takes responsibility for a complex humanitarian progressive proposition. He or she subsequently invites all necessary institutional powers to help enlarge it.
The role of the pioneer is to define complex progression based on human values. When inviting the institutional powers to join the pioneer they are asked to enhance the responsibility with their own institutional powers. To make a holistic proposition of human values one cannot just rely on a single empowering institution. If that were the case the institution would have done this already by itself. The complexity of the whole is that it needs the entire mix of authorities of a society to become effective, with the pioneer sitting bang in the middle.
In sustainocracy the pioneer takes the lead and invites the four key authorities that are needed to expand the human values into common wellness and progress:
- Local government
- Technological innovators
- Educators & scientific researchers
- The local public itself
Drawing all these authorities from the field of fragmented interests, they unite in the field of common responsibilities together with the pioneer. Seemingly contradicting interests suddenly start complementing each other as the focus lies on progressive goals outside the scope of self interest. The self interest can be complied with only if the common interest is achieved. This forces the authorities to enter into co-creative processes by trying to understand each other and join forces. The pivot is the pioneer who safeguards the humanitarian interests in a battle field of institutional giants.
In the Netherlands I have started experimenting with this pioneership. It resulted into a series of initiatives that are proving their value from a humanitarian perspective but also the institutional positioning into a new world. Each of the authorities has a chance to excel in its own field of competence, not by competing or creating interdependence but by combining the individual competences into a common goal. Since executives and personnel in such institutions are human beings too we find that the sensitivity of the hard material robotics become more soft to address human wealth issues through new types of policy makings.
The institutions change slowly into supportive and facilitating identities that gather new public admiration. They truly become extenders of human progress to which they attached their fragmented by highly specialized competences with new perspectives of survival first but institutional sustainability in the long term. The field of chaos can now be managed with the perspective of an institutional alternative, not just to create value but to contribute to a greater cause, enhancing it and expanding it.
To extend these finding globally I have started a training school for sustainocracy, training pioneers as well as institutional executives on their new age responsibilities and challenges when entering the field of sustainable progress and all related differences with the old paradigm.
Pass the word and help change the world.