Author Topic: Towards an active civil society in the eUK  (Read 467 times)

Chip Daniels

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Towards an active civil society in the eUK
« on: May 20, 2009, 01:36:13 am »
So... I've been around the eUK for a while now.  Not a huge amount of time, but some time; long enough to see younger citizens than myself emerge and start making some noise.

The biggest gap in the eUK, and likely eRep itself, is the lack of a vibrant civil society.  (a quick definition copied and pasted from Wikipedia:  "Civil society refers to the arena of uncoerced collective action around shared interests, purposes and values. In theory, its institutional forms are distinct from those of the state, family and market, though in practice, the boundaries between state, civil society, family and market are often complex, blurred and negotiated. Civil society commonly embraces a diversity of spaces, actors and institutional forms, varying in their degree of formality, autonomy and power. Civil societies are often populated by organizations such as registered charities, development non-governmental organizations, community groups, women's organizations, faith-based organizations, professional associations, trade unions, self-help groups, social movements, business associations, coalitions and advocacy groups.")

Yes, individuals do have their say here on the forums.  But my key interest is getting people working together towards some political end without necessarily being circumscribed by any given political party.  This is not to say that I am against parties - far from it - but I also see that there is valuable space for political movements to grow alongside and outside them.  Since my eRep birth I have been heavily involved in the UK Housing Union, pretty much the only active union in eUK (the Guild of Hard Workers operates on quite a different philosophy to a trade union).  This, I feel, is a good start - a way for citizens from day one to exercise their political power, to discuss, and experience the mechanics of the game and form opinions - without having to wait x amount of time before they can join a party.  I believe that this is key to engaging our new citizens - getting them stuck in from the get go.  But I am beginning to think through other possibilities.  And I am hoping that there are others similarly willing.

First of all, I would like to set up a Thinktank org; with 4 or 5 regular contributors putting research and policy suggestions out into the public sphere, for citizens to read and discuss, and for parties to respond to.  I think it would be a healthy step to take, to escape the groupthink that can infect parties, and to get everybody, from newborns to PPs discussing and responding to policy suggestions on the same footing.

Of course, there are so many other opportunities: A Credit Union for young players to purchase their first house with, a confederation of employers, single-issue campaign orgs that can have their weight felt in parties...

Anyway, those are my thoughts and wishes.  I hope that there are others willing to give it a try.  I am definitely seeking likeminded individuals to form a Thinktank, an eRep equivalent of the Institute of Public Policy Research.


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Re: Towards an active civil society in the eUK
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2009, 06:33:59 pm »
Interesting idea,put it in general (or ask it to be moved) and you might get more replys.
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Chip Daniels

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Re: Towards an active civil society in the eUK
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2009, 08:28:52 pm »
thanks for advice.  Will repost in general.