What is Sociocracy?
Sociocracy (A.K.ADynamic Governance) is an organisational method developed by Gerard Endenburg in the Netherlands. It increases effectiveness, decreases meetings, balances power dynamics and empowers every voice to be heard in streamlined decision- making processes.
In this method, policy decisions are made by consent and the organisation is structured in the form of circles. This allows for a group to self organise and everyone has an opportunity to have a voice. Each circle is connected to another circle via 2 members, so that every circle in an organisation is double-linked.
What are the benefits?
Sociocracy provides decision-making processes and organisational structures that ensure every voice gets heard and valued. It enables groups to function in ways that promote harmony, synergy and effective achievement of goals. Sociocracy also decentralises power and increases a sense of community and shared vision. This proven governance method provides the structure and organisational systems to create the optimum environment for peaceful and compassionate relating to flourish.
How did Ruth learn about it?
Ruth was introduced to Sociocracy in 2011 by the lead expert in the USA: John Buck and became NZ’s first (and Australia's second) certified Sociocracy trainer in May 2014.
Ruth participates in several groups where Sociocratic processes are implemented and has been training others in the process since 2012. Ruth enjoys the ease of decision-making Sociocracy provides where we don’t have to all fully agree with the decision to find a solution that everyone can live with. It also allows a feedback loop to the leaders of an organisation, so everyone has a voice.
How can I learn more?
Below are some resources that will give you an overview of the basic principles. To be equipped with the tools to start your own journey of using Sociocracy (aka.Dynamic Governance) in your workplace you can sign up for our next online course: Foundations of Sociocracy Restorative Interactions offers face to face Introductions and Foundation trainings for groups and organisations looking to implement the process. Contact Ruth: email@example.com for further details.
Articles and Books
- “creative-forces-of-self-organisation”by John Buck and Gerard Endenburg. This article gives an explanation of dynamic governance with two case histories. Has a list of references, including about cybernetics and systems theory.
- Sociocracy: An Organizational Structure for Distributed Leadership by Sarah Lozanova – this TriplePundit article outlines the basics of the Sociocratic Circle Method.
- We the People: Consenting to a Deeper Democracy by John Buck and Sharon Villines, 2007. This book explains the concepts behind dynamic governance and why it produces such dramatic results, and is the chief reference in English. Available from our shop: or John Buck's website: http://www.governancealive.com
- Company-wide Agility with Beyond Budgeting, Open Space & Sociocracy: Survive & Thrive on Disruption by Jutta Eckstein and John Buck
This book synthesizes these approaches and invites to a new, overview perspective that can truly address the challenges of doing business in a volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous world.
Many Voices One Song: Shared Power with Sociocracy
- Sociocracyconsulting.com The Sociocracy Consulting Group, an international group that provides consulting, facilitation, coaching, and training on dynamic governance, aka sociocracy. The site contains more links to information and organizations.
- Sociocracy.Info Sharon Villines' website (co-author of We the People). A resource for sociocratic history, ideas, methods, and additional information.
- Sociocracy for All – a peer-oriented nonprofit providing advocacy, outreach, and education about sociocracy to all who are interested.
- Sociocracy: Try, Test & Learn - Facebook group for past and present participants of Ruth's workshops to continue the conversation and dynamic learning online
- Sociocracy Group on Groups.io. An online group that includes conversations, news, events and updates for, from, and about sociocracy. The group spans the globe, as well as all levels of experience from complete beginner to expert. Anyone with an interest in sociocracy is welcome to join.
- Beyond Democracy: documentary DVD on dynamic governance by filmmaker Ted Millich.
A few youtube clips that cover the overview and provide some stories include:
- Sociocracy: Thinking Smarter Together | John Buck | TEDxUMD https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K3s6Ak-iCug&t=12s
- Ecology of Consent: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vNou_x-4AHE
- The Operating System Of The New Economy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l3zFWpntExg&list=PLhGUUjxel3jEkrDGyRTmDkrxVc1YE0YMR&index=2&t=2s