village protocol

A village protocol is an organization protocol that maintains a village, in all the complexity of that term. It usually means no more than 100-150 people in a relatively loose set of social networks and creative networks.

Village protocol is useful in the context of democratic structuring of diverse individuals with shared moral values in order to sustainably self-organize in fast-paced, rapidly changing environments where ecological, infrastructural, ethical and political constraints dominate decision making.

Such a protocol systematically compiles such constraints into real options, eliminating choices the group will not follow through on. It provides negative feedback to de-escalate conflict and delay any contentious decisions. Typical use is in worker co-operatives to self-manage some shared resource.

It relies on an underlying meeting protocol and on a democratic structuring of the group. It also relies on capital assets, particular infrastructural capital, that is, actual places and things - a village is always situated. It can be used by committees, subsidiaries, franchisees or other like-minded people with specific responsibilities tied to some infrastructure.

As pioneered by Kate Holloway, Craig Hubley, Jeff Werner, and other known trolls, a village protocol offers simple suggestions for organizations to peaceably, efficiently, and successfully conduct themselves to determine and meet shared objectives within the constraints of the ecological and social environment. This is one of many green management resources at Living Platform itself.

Village protocols integrate prior ideas from consensus and collective intelligence theory: play ethic, collaboration ethic, postmodern politics, Robert's Rules of Order, GROOP, Tao of Activism, twelve levers, consensus decision making, backcast to fixed time horizon, vision and mission, how to wiki well and other wiki best practice, Rochdale Principles, peacemaking, kibbutzim, moshavim,fair trade, Four Pillars and other civic best practice. While these present complex processes, the protocols attempt to break them down to define only the iterators involved: the actual steps that must be taken in order by the group.

A protocol combines legal, financial, ethical, and technological norms and must usually be specified in a basis for unity or social contract, e.g. the constitution of a nonprofit, or corporation bylaws. A Board of Directors uses protocols to determine when the organization has failed and uses a village protocol or tribe protocol to correct. A tribe protocol does not rely on any particular asset or physical place and does not make any economic assumptions.


A village protocol typically has both online and face-to-face elements.

use for EVil

If you are affiliated with the Element Village organization as a volunteer, advisor, board member, or partner, please take a moment to familiarize yourself with all Element Village protocols.