A System That Works: Building a Decentralized Global Political Economy using the Viable System Model

Jon Li


System That Works:

Building a decentralized Global Political Economy using the Viable System Model

A political economy that enhances personal freedom requires effective but limited regulation.  The Viable System Model by Stafford Beer offers a way to analyze an organization’s communication problems, maximize resource use, minimize waste, and adapt to a changing environment by clarifying what to regulate. Jon Walker’s “VSM Quick Guide” and Allenna Leonard’s “Personal VSM” ground the reader. VSM is applied to a community of 65,000 people in Davis, California, USA, in a way that could be used in other places around the world, to help identify strategies to better meet human needs, enhance the local economy, reduce environmental damage, and encourage natural healing processes. Given the recursive nature of the VSM, this method could be used at every level from person to family/neighborhood/village/community/district/region/state/nation/continent/planet, emphasizing the system in focus.  “National Government: disseminated regulation in real time, or ‘How to run a country’” by Stafford Beer describes how to construct “quantified flow charts” to identify which statistics to measure daily as regulation at a particular level of recursion.


viable system model, decentralization

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