Sociocracy – a way of organising

What a name! Impossible to say!  Dynamic governance is another name for it. Sociocracy is a way of  organising; to make it easier for organisations  to be non-hierarchical, for the quieter voices to be heard and decisions to be owned by everyone in the group as well as  being efficient and taking less time.

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The name comes from ‘socius’ which in Greek means people known to you as opposed to ‘demo’ from democracy which means people unknown to you.  This  limits the use of this style  and focuses it on work place organsing or groups that know each other. It  is being used in business and bureaucracies not just eco-villages. Is is said to raise efficiency and humanness of organisations.

From one website on sociocracy:

The principles and practices of sociocracy are based on business management and organizational theory, and on cybernetics, the science of communications and control. That sounds complicated but the design is simple and easily understood. In conducting its affairs, a sociocratic organization stresses accountability, inclusiveness, and transparency.


There are 4 main principles:

1.Organsing in circles – as self managing teams

2.Double Linking Principles – this means:  one person is appointed by the topic circle to the general circle to represent the  interests of the topic circle  in the general circle


and one person is appointed by the general circle to  represent their interests in the topic circle.

3.Policy decisions among circle members  are made by CONSENT – that is there are  no  reasoned and paramount objections

4.Election for all  roles are made by consent election process

It is said you don’t burn out so quickly as you share the responsibility more productively.  Groups using sociocracy are said to be  resilient, effective, adaptive, decentralised and  create vision all the time.

It promises less meetings and the ones you have are able to energise you! Must be worth looking at….

You can find more info at:


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2 comments on “Sociocracy – a way of organising
  1. J Safran says:

    How are the two circles (topical and general) determined/constructed/constituted/given a membership and how are the two sets of interests determined/found/specified? (This does to some extent address Rousseau’s problem of factions [he wants all specific/special/non-general interest groups to be put aside when decisions are being made about the community/the whole/the general or common good] but while it is “interpenetrative”, it may only defer or even complicate the problems of decision making about community/social matters.)

    • The main problem, from what I understand, is how the first general circle is composed. That seems to be left to those who are interested. The topics circles, their roles, aims and powers and who goes in them are decided by the general circle But once up and running are semi autonomous and don’t have to keep coming back to the general circle for approval. So speeds things up. But as this is mostly used in already constituted groups such as schools, factories and works places, the first general circle is probably made up of the hierarchies already in place which is not ideal but could be addressed quite easily. Hope that answers some of your question!

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