Cambrian Governance - The Internet Transition

Long but interesting article by Robin Berjon.

He’s making the case for a new decentralised form of diverse, chaotic horizontal global governance to move from an internet run by competing warlords towards one which facilitates a global collective intelligence. Something that’s up to the task of dealing with global problems, including how to manage a global internet (I think).

Lots of good food thought here anyway, so I think it’s worthy of a topic to see what reactions were have from this community.

Possibly to help us wonder about where Safe should be heading wrt governance, and how it might fit with and help facilitate better global intelligence etc.

There a lot I could quote but I picked a couple of things to encourage reading:

However, much of the infrastructure we have which sustained our collective intelligence has been thrown into disarray at a time when it was already barely coping. The stakes therefore are to either develop the institutional capacity for transnational, post-geographic governance or to face extinction-class, or at least civilisation-ending, catastrophic collapse.

TL;DR; This matters!

There is no purely technical fix for our predicament — evidently — but for the technologists amongst us focusing on the architectural properties of our technical decisions, on how technical architecture creates or constrains institutional mechanisms, and how technology works with governance is key. To take but one example, the best governance model that is available in a client/server architecture is benevolent dictatorship. No matter how you set things up, the server can ultimately change the rules. That’s a major constraint to work with; it will eventually break most equalitarian governance models and mechanically limit collective intelligence. Peer-to-peer architectures offer a much richer set of institutional roles for agents and for the rules with which they can interact, and therefore provide a much more powerful solution space. It’s worth spending some quality time with them for that reason alone.

TL;DR: Safe Network is in the game (BTW he works at protocol labs), although he doesn’t say much about what is possible with p2p and the kind of thing SN are doing.

Go on, you know you want to…


I intend on writing a longer response, but I am quite pushed for time.

Perhaps in the meantime I can do some “colouring in”

This post has linked through to half a dozen posts that I would like to read and engage on and I will be honest; our work still needs more in terms of messaging - but as a transactional governance framework, I would like to hear anywhere where it doesn’t stand-up to the conditions set out by this article.

What I would add is the author makes everything sound very complicated, when what we need to remember is that people need to use the systems we create. We need a simple set of ongoing actions. Call, action, effect, repeat. These actions need to reflect every strata of society - even the people who can’t access them because they will be affected by them.