5.c.14 – Should we also innovate the concept of official assembly?

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August 5, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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Should we also innovate the concept of official assembly?

Terms of the meeting, agendas that cannot be modified, assemblies to which participate wearing a suit, majority vote, minutes with ritual formulas: what a bore! What would we say to our kids of “the generation I” that are growing? That we couldn’t do anything better? Once again let’s roll up our sleeves and think together: once defined which is the function of the Village, will be the members thereof, adult and responsible persons, who will manage to carry out this function at their best; the sense of responsibility is automatically triggered when one is nominated by his family and his friends, i.e. from people one has to look in the eyes every day, while the enthusiasm grows when one covers an institutional role which rewards can compensate for the daily hardships.
Anyone who has attended a meeting organized from above (a condominium, a school council, a working meeting etc..) can confirm that it is boring and often an inconclusive experience; the self-organization of a group of peers to achieve a purpose is completely different:
– no official summons to be notified by registered letters with advice of receipt are needed, simply because often there will be no need for a physical meeting; the debate on the problems to be defined can be made in a network with a forum dedicated to the village (in a democratic structure it is obvious that the entire territory is covered by high speed connection lines and that members of the village, having a role of public utility, have free access to the internet) and then each member may make proposals or comment on those of others (even those of other villages) in the spare time at his sole discretion
– no agendas that cannot be modified, except by a new date and with all the necessary formalities, are necessary simply because it would make no sense. Each member can enter in the forum the topic that he prefers and if the other members will comment that, it means that it was worthy of debate, otherwise they will not.
– normally to summon an assembly is not needed, because we saw that the work may take place on the web; the members of a village will naturally consolidate their relationship by personally meeting, but it is preferable that they meet all together around a beautiful table.
– usually no majority voting is needed, because in a small group of members familiar to each other will tend to reach unanimity; note that consensus does not mean that all think the same way, but to converge towards a common position, albeit starting from different views; when a group must often use  voting, it means that is not a cohesive group and it is better that it winds up.
– no minutes are needed with formulas of old notary rite e.g.: “on the 24th  (twenty-fourth) of the month of September, 2008 (two thousand eight), at the offices located in …, the Assembly meets .. . duly convened by registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt sent on …, provided that all the attendants … “ and so on in the general alienation. The result of the discussions in the forum is stored and, upon reaching a common position on a given topic, it will be summarized in a writing so that it can advance to the fourth ring.

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