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Cities are massively redefining their functions

When we look at the development and evolution of cities we can observe an era of intense changes. While the organic growth of urban centers has historically been motivated by defense against external aggression, trade and later industrial activities, nowadays cities develop around quality of life and services. For a long time city management was conditioned by urban growth factors, building infrastructures and facilitation business dynamics. This determined the look and feel of the places, often at the expense of pollution, traffic based collapsed infrastructures, waste development, criminality, ghettos, etc. They were the playing ground of financial lobbiest, industrial giants, logistic trade lables, real estate developers and speculants, and underground activities of drug dealers, financial criminals, etc. Expensive bureaucracy, police and other measure developed to manage this dark side of city explotation.

Brave leadership nowadays is producing a massive turnaround that is motivated by a new era in which awareness of certain key responsibilities have penetrated all layers of society. Things that were held for impossible a few decades ago are now florishing in certain municipalities as a modern age example of sustainable progress. We are still living in between the two realities but the new one, the healthy, participatory, environmental friendly one, is manifesting itself with great determination and growth. Gradually urban environments can become Sustainocracies.

Jean-Paul Close

Some examples on social media:

Barcelona car free superblocks

The city with the highest car density is transforming into a green pearl along the mediterrean sea. Since the 80´s we have seen a huge transformation of this once ugly, highly polluted, industrial harbour city into a genuine urban oases of livability and quality of life.

Paris redefining the Champs Elysees

An historical location known for its traffic chaos in Paris is now being redesigned to host art, nature, recreation and health. The introduction is in French but it shows the steps that the mega city is taking to make it a livable and dynamic environment. Not quite a sustainocracy yet but a few steps closer.

City Micro Farming

Increasingly food is being produced in the cities, close to and involving the consuming people. Our own FRE2SH program is inspiring people accross the world to initiate such processes.

7 principes for building cities (Peter Calthorpe)

We at Sustainocracy tend to agree with many the views of Peter Calthorpe on city design. The only difference is that we place them specifically into a human values centered context. We introduce the participation society around our five core natural human values as a shared responsibility. This makes a city more than a set of infrastructures. It brings a city alive with an identity, authenticity and interactive citizenship, 4 x WIN entrepreneurship and facilitating governance. The city becomes a self sustaining eco-system that has a rich and dynamic inner life and a symbiotic relationship with its surroundings.

The words that trigger city development now are “participation”, “shared responsibilities” and our “core natural values”, such as health and safety, with a much broader meaning of each of these two words then what we were used to. Developing our basic needs in community based districts is key and only briefly mentioned in this video. But still the video is a good basis that can be enhanced with Sustainocratic tables and development clusters.

You can say it but if you don’t present an alternative no one will listen.

From the Holos project, a presentation by Dr. John Anderson

During our scientific EuroSpes encounter on “Place based Ethics, Sustainability and Spirituality” in the beautiful city of Urbino in Italy, I was pleasantly surprised to hear presentations about leaving our crumbling comfort zone to find a safer common ground. My own presentation was about “breaking with our (capitalist, money dependent, politically mismanaged) heritage”. I introduced my audience into my own business as unusual, unusual for others but very usual for me, referred to as Sustainocracy.

It was good to see that intellectually people were approaching “my world” of commonly shared values. The common good was finally defined as “the entire living world” and new business ideas were proposed to address and respect that common good adequately. A bit like our own sustainocratic 4 x WIN method, but not quite as far yet. It was good to see that the idea of business schools developing around the common good became a point of attention. Refreshing because only a couple of years ago this proposition was perceived as “impossible to achieve”.

Powerful presentations of business entities in the process to 4 x WIN were showing that business education is lagging behind.

Also scientists from the world of theology reflected about the role of religion and need for adjustment.

The theological theory seems to be practical enough as presented by Michal Paluch of the Angelicum Pontifical University of St. Thomas in Rome
However in the field of human weaknesses the abuse of power is real. The Roman Catholic Church has been a role model for the organization of multinationals. The same human weaknesses are also observed there.

So in every field of our old pillars of society: society, capitalism, democracy, religion, justice, media, etc fundamental transformative change is needed. But we can say it one million times. Everyone will knod in agreement and then continue what they have been doing all the time. If no alternative is presented then business as usual will remain the mainstream. Until it collapses into the biggest chaos ever.

Madhumita Chatterji (ABBS School of Management) shows a leadership comparison between level of values and level of skills.

The above is a similar drawing as the ones used in Sustainocracy to position our alternative in the quadrant of high values (ethics) and skills (multidisciplinary authenticity). The complexity is not just to understand the ideal. It is to get those in manipulative and dangerous positions to let go. Luckily it is our experience in our core values driven communities, that among the elite there are many that are very much inclined to accept the invitation to the values driven quadrant and do their best effort to make it grow in the process.

They do need the positive invitation to make the choice.

(Jean-Paul Close)

And someone has to formulate that choice. This is what we have been doing successfully for the last decades for all stakeholders involved. Many of our visitors said, when observing this way of evolutionary working: “It exists, now we want it too”. Well why not? Who or what stops you to make the step? We can help….

Part 2: Institutional mentality shift to 4 x WIN for sustainable human wellness evolution and progress

In part 1 we can see that the root cause of all human issues around the world is a historical but unsustainable system based on 1 x WIN financial self interests. In part 2 we see that the introduction of shared 4 x WIN (human values, society, environment and financial continuity) responsibilities helps institutions to redefine their positioning within the scope of societal sustainable wellness and progress. It does not only help their own image and multiple bottomline success factors, it also assures their own sustainable embedding in a new era of sustainable development through a wellness driven ecosystem.

Like this the institutional repositioning into 4 x WIN is an undeniable opportunity while remaining in the field of 1 x WIN is increasing an existential threat for any organization. 4 x WIN is based on a new level of ethics that is defined around laws of nature and our core natural human values. A new regional ecosystem arises around the principle of shared responsibilities in which 4 x WIN is ruling and money is just one of the many means. We called this new regional ecosystem a Sustainocracy (sustainable human progress and real time democracy).

Applying this by addressing the core human needs for sustainable wellness in a well balance way with our natural environment, we see many multidisciplinary initiatives arise that connect all stakeholders, based on their unique contribution to the community challenges. Everyone, including citizens act 4 x WIN.

A new dimension of leadership emerges that can be characterized as integrated rather than just servant, since reciprocity is key in the process. Many people in leading position in the old 1 x WIN society have no intentions to be corrupt. They are full of positive ambitions but often feel lack of support in this old system to develop their views, having to compete all the time with the interests of others. Concensus is often much easier to find when the shared responsibility for the core human values is accepted as overall governance framework. Discussions then develop around priorities, the diversity of approaches and engagement of the right contributions in a project driven cocreation environment.

Gradually also our system of law is adjusted to avoid 1 x WIN mentalities and unjustified happy fews making abusive misuse of our planet and human species out of their self interest. Corruption is addressed and eliminated by breaking down the silos and feeding the warm, self correcting cocreation at all levels. Gradually poverty, climate issues, welfare diseases, negative stress, warfare and many other problems related to the 1 x WIN era, are eliminated.

Key in this process of transition is that we all (people and institutions) find each other in this field of shared responsibilities (new ethics). Those who do not have something to explain.