30 October 2011

potential role of General Assemblies in local government

In the Occupy Wall Street movement all decisions are being made through a General Assembly (GA) based on consensus.  This is a unique way of decision-making for a group that is leaderless.  There are General Assemblies in other cities that are being formed. The question that I am pondering is: Can GAs replace the local democratic process in cities?  Another question is : Can  Direct Democracy be used effectively to make major decisions at a local level?  The use of GAs promises more participation in government, while Direct Democracy can allow citizens to vote via the Internet on key items in a city’s budget.  These have to be explored further. 
In one of the latest posts on OccupyWallStreet (http://occupywallst.org ) titled “Enacting the Impossible (On Consensus Decision Making)” there is a very good discussion on General Assemblies:
The Co-Intelligence Institute discusses many aspects of improving citizen participation in government:

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