Networks of Regional Meta-Hubs

This project has lofty objectives, and we are proposing the establishment of networks of regional meta-hubs as a way of bringing this vision to life.  Note that much of this is based on Hanzi Freinacht’s Montesquieu 2.0 model, as described in the book Nordic Ideology, although we are re-interpreting this model in a way that leans heavily on the power of civil society and non-governmental organizations as a catalyst for large-scale game change.  These are the proposed guiding principles for the regional meta-hubs:

  • Groups and organizations are essential for providing services to communities and to improving people’s lives during these times of challenge and crisis, which includes increased isolation, depression, and meaninglessness among many people and in which our political systems are increasingly dysfunctional and in which the health of our natural environment is under unprecedented threat.  Locally-based groups and organizations can help combat this in a variety of ways because they can offer important services directly to community members, such as inner awareness and mindfulness, civic engagement, art and culture activities, explorations of spirituality and meaning making, social entrepreneurship training, and the promotion of effective sensemaking skills.  These groups and organizations are often nonprofit and non-governmental, although there are other models that can also be effective.
  • Each geographic region should have a meta-hub that interconnects several groups and organizations based on a holonic pattern.  Each constituent group and organization can be considered a hub in its own right, since they each serve to connect people within their respective communities on the basis of some common purpose.  Different groups with different purposes that share overlapping geographic footprints have the potential to develop forms of interaction and interconnection.  When there are organized but decentralized patterns of interaction across hubs within a geographic region, this forms a hub of hubs, which can thus be called a meta-hub.
  • No single group or organization will be all things to all people.  We need a separation of concerns between different groups and organizations that play different roles and have different specialties based on their alignment with specific functional areas.  To prevent any organization from overreaching or becoming too powerful, the heterarchical structure among the different organizations would need to be set up to provide checks and balances.
  • There needs to be a relation between the different groups and organizations so that people can have visibility into what the other groups are and how to get involved with any one of them.  These relations need to be heterarchical so that no group or organization would be subordinate to another across functional areas.
  • Each regional meta-hub and also each group and organization needs to have community leaders and stewards for their activities.  There should be minimal overlap in the leadership among these entities so that you don’t have the same people running more than one of them.  Naturally there would be a lot of the same people in these groups and organizations and also some of these people would be stewards and coordinators at the regional meta-hub level, but the same people should not be leaders of multiple groups and organizations if possible.
  • The different functional areas are aligned with aspects of life that are lacking in our society and that we would like to promote for the benefit of people, communities, and their relations with each other.
  • Each specific functional area should have a global network of local affiliates, which are essentially the local groups and organizations that are aligned with some specific functional area.  This essentially means that there would be a light layer of governance at the global scale for each major functional area.  The global governance would probably involve some international NGO and this organization would have regional affiliates in various countries and various cities.  Each of these local affiliates then would work directly with the people at the ground level.  For examples of international NGOs that might be aligned with a specific functional area, consider the Inner Development Goals, the Unitarian Universalist Society, etc.  In this graphic, above the map there are two meta-hubs, with the one on the right representing the global organizational meta-hub, and that one is intended to include organizations that have a global reach and that have boots-on-the-ground affiliates in various regions throughout the world.  The one on the left is intended to show the structure of local and regional meta-hubs, which is why that one has lines connecting to the meta-hub icons that dot the world map.  This is based on the principles of cosmolocalism.
  • The governance of these international NGOs would be neither top-down nor bottom-up.  Top-down governance would be elitist, and we don’t want that.  Bottom-up governance would be inefficient.  Instead we would want a balance.
  • Each specific functional area should have some sort of guiding frameworks that are ultimately grounded in metatheory.  This would allow for interdisciplinary thought and research to permeate the guiding frameworks for each functional area and for there to ultimately be processes for sharing ideas and information among these functional areas at the global and regional levels.
  • Each specific functional area should have tech tools and apps to help coordinate it at the global and the regional level and each regional meta-hub also should have tech tools and apps and ideally the local and regional should be interwoven with the global.  The in-person meetup networks should be interwoven with the virtual meetup communities.  Ideally these tech tools and apps should be interoperable.
  • The patterns of relations between the functional areas within the meta-hubs should be grounded in metatheory.  We are currently favoring Hanzi Freinacht’s Montesquieu 2.0 model, as explained in the book Nordic Ideology.  This framework features 6 functional areas (given in Nordic Ideology as “6 new forms of politics”), but there might be other possible frameworks that would meet all or most of these guiding principles.  Possibly some frameworks might have more or fewer functional areas.
  • While there is a deep rhyme and reason to how these different kinds of groups and organizations will relate to each other, it is not necessary for people within any one of the groups to understand that deep pattern.  There is a deep pattern that holds it together, but it isn’t necessary for very many people to see the big picture.  Also the relation between the groups can shift and they might bump up against each other and there might also be some overlap in their function, but we don’t want groups from one functional area to swallow those from other functional areas.  We’re drawing from metatheory because we think that will help us design the most stable and results-based movement as we possibly can, not because we think it is necessary for rank-and-file community members to study and understand this highly abstract and complex theoretical work.
  • Many of the people within these groups and organizations would have some internal model of the whole structure.  This model would often take the form of a written charter outlining their organization’s mission and scope of operations, including an outline of the services that they provide to the community and their relationship to other organizations that provide different types of services.  Often unwritten mental models would be sufficient as well, as long as there is a general agreement, transparency, and mutual understanding among the leadership structure and the rank-and-file members about what the organization does and doesn’t do.  This would then inform the autopoiesis of the organization and provide a framework for the complementary coexistence with other organizations that are aligned with different functional areas that might happen to reside within their same geographic region.
  • We expect that there would need to be social experiments in different geographic regions to figure out through trial and error what would be the optimal format for the meta-hubs.  Each of these would essentially be local pilot projects and the leaders of these projects should be in regular communication with each other so as to share ideas and report to each other what is working and not working within their regional meta-hubs.  The organizations do not have a full picture of what the end result should be and they will need to figure this out through experiments and in-the-moment adjustments.  The relation between the organizations will need to be continuously re-evaluated until it becomes stable.  This is based on the concept of social autopoiesis.
  • We expect that once there are regional meta-hubs that are really working because they are strengthening communities and giving people a higher quality of life that this model would be replicated in multiple regions and this would ultimately have a positive impact on the political and economic systems and help bring about a more eudemonistic Game B global society.

We are actively looking to establish these meta-hubs in various cities and regions throughout the world.  We already have a pilot project in Sacramento / SF Bay Area California and our associates are working on similar community-based social innovation in other regions, including the Chicagoland area and Greater Seattle / Washington State.  If you would like to get involved in any way, either within one of these existing meta-hubs or to start your own meta-hub, please email us