Following an invitation by www.RASL.nu (Rotterdam Art and Science Lab) is September 2019, I held a workshop about collective decision-making at Wille de Kooning Academy. RASL is a lab between WdKA, Erasmus University Rotterdam, and Codearts University of the Arts. Every year they hold a several-weeks-long workshop and they embark on different issues. For this year and based on www.opensourcegovernance.com project, I was invited to do the workshop. I took the chance to both hold a workshop, as well as to put some of the discussions arising from Project OSG into practice.
The session started by explaining representative systems in decision-making, and how today these systems feel outdated, and not really providing to the needs of our complex societies and the decision-making process that goes around them. I then briefly introduced project OSG and how the project aims to design a blueprint for an all-inclusive decision-making system.
Looking into the notion of "wisdom of the crowd", I used an example of "the parable of the ox", but this time I used a giant jar of M&Ms to explain the idea of the wisdom of the crowd to the students. The goal was to first individually and then in groups come up with estimations of how many M&Ms are there in the container. The average numbers then was analyzed to make the point of the workshop clear. Later I explained a method in choosing a collective question in a big crowd based on the Socratic dialog techniques. We then mixed the two methods to create a collective question from the students with regard to their future collective concerns. and then we voted (with results ranging from 0 to 10), to decide over that question. The whole session took about four hours in which several examples were given, and we had several rounds of debates in crowds with different sizes. The students then went on to use the same technique during the whole course for different issues they had to solve.
Special thanks to Josué W. Amador From RASL for the invitation.
Documentation by Josué W. Amador