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One New Science for One New Social Initiative
my name is Denis Pageau and I am pleased to announce the prelaunch of Citizens & Societies a new social initiative that will help us build better societies together.
To help us achieve this goal, Citizens & Societies will create the world’s first community of practice of citizens.
For those unfamiliar with the term, a community of practice (CoP) is a learning tool. To be more precise communities of practices are specialized discussion forums that are used to help professionals:
- acquire new knowledge,
- develop new skills,
- find new solutions, or
- improve existing practices.
Through this process;
- professionals become more competent,
- the profession itself becomes more recognized and respected, and finally,
- the organizations that employ them become more efficient.
There are communities of practice for nurses, engineers, auditors, youth mental health practitioners, and in many other fields.
The key to facilitate learning and problem solving is to use the scientific knowledge and language specifically linked to the profession. Both the language and the knowledge make it easier for the participants to have constructive and respectful dialogues, to share knowledge and to solve problems.
Unfortunately, until very recently citizens did not have access to their own specific scientific knowledge and language. It was therefore impossible for us to develop a community of practice.
Hence, today when citizens participate in a dialogue about societies, it is very difficult for them to have constructive and respectful dialogues.
Moreover, since the level of knowledge about societies is very low, this limits the possibility of finding solutions.
A new science designed exclusively for citizens
Fortunately, we now have access to a new management science that studies societies as organizations and citizenship as a profession.
This science, which I have called SOCIETALogy, is for citizens what nursing is for nurses, accounting for accountants, or engineering for engineers.
SOCIETALogy is a science that helps us become more competent citizens by allowing us to better understand our profession, citizenship, and to better macromanage our societies, whose overall goal is to reduce the level of social and societal tensions, frictions and conflicts as well as increase the quality of life for all citizens.
Incidentally, we already participate in the macromanagement of our societies. Indeed when we elect one of our fellow citizens to represent us within our legislative assemblies; we choose them according to the vision, the mission and the objectives as well as the means and resources that they directly or indirectly propose to achieve and use during their mandate. This is what macromanagement is all about.
Macromanagement is a form of management that consist of identifying and choosing the vision, the mission and the goals an organization must achieve. To a lesser extent, it also includes choosing the means and resources to be used.
Unfortunately up until now, neither our candidates nor we ourselves could rely on a science to identify and choose the appropriate, vision, mission and objectives for our societies.
This is where SOCIETALogy can help us since it was designed specifically to help citizens to macromanage their societies. It offers several tools, including scientific models that we can use to guide our dialogues and our actions.
The first model describes what a “good” society is, which societalogically speaking is a balanced society, while the second describes what a “good” citizen is, which societalogically speaking is a competent citizen. (The models are described further below.)
This is the first time we have access to scientific models
Citizens & Societies uses SOCIETALogy to frame our dialogues so that:
- We can become more competent citizens,
- that our profession, citizenship, be more respected,
- We can make our societies more efficient.
To help us achieve equilibrium, Citizens & Societies seeks to achieve three objectives:
- Helps citizens share the scientific knowledge they have access to or their experience so that we can become better citizens and better macromanage our societies and reach equilibrium. (SOCIETALogy, neuroscience, psychology, social psychology, economics, politics, sociology, etc.)
- Help citizens identify best practices, improve those that exist as well as create new ones through respectful and constructive dialogues.
- Coordinate and promote the implementation of these best practices and social innovations.
This will naturally be a long-term endeavor, because the priority is the transfer of knowledge. Indeed, as long as we do not use the same language and the same scientific knowledge, we will not be able to move forward. This explains why Citizens & Societies is in prelaunch.
However, in order to start the transfer of knowledge, here are some of the fundamental elements that will guide our dialogues.
Seven Societalogical Observations
To give you an idea on the knowledge that will be used to guide our dialogues and our actions, here are 7 societalogical observations. These should always be used to help us build balanced societies together.
1 – Without Citizens, There Are No Societies*
Societalogically speaking, societies are only the results of our individual, group and collective actions. Hence, the more competent citizens are, the better our societies are.
This implies that if we want to be successful in reaching equilibrium, the laws, the programs and the various tools we use to manage our societies must help citizens become more competent.
In the same vein, we as citizens, must increase our personal, social and collective competences in order to help reduce the level of social and societal tensions, frictions and conflicts present in our societies. In short, we must make the necessary efforts to become competent citizens.
* Citizens & Societies takes its name from this first observation.
2 – We Are Social Beings
We are social beings with individual needs. Thus, we are not individuals with social needs.
In a world where we promote the development of our individualism, through the “me”, “myself” and “I” culture, it is important that we realize that we are primarily social beings.
This second observation must necessarily guide our actions when we work together to build balanced societies.
Indeed, we must find a balance in the way in which we respond to the individual needs of citizens by ensuring that meeting these needs will not adversely unduly affect other citizens, the functioning and development of our society and our governments.
3 – We Are All Citizens
As we build better societies together, we need to remember that we are all citizens of the societies in which we live. This is what unites us.
We are all citizens, no matter:
- Our age, our sex, our ethnic origin, our sexual orientation.
- Our political, economic, religious, philosophical, military or other orientation.
- Our purchasing power and where we are in the social hierarchy.
From this third observation, we can deduce two insights.
First, we are all responsible for the functioning and development of our societies and the resulting quality of life.
Second, we must make sure that the political, economic, religious, philosophical practices and beliefs that we decide to use are compatible with the development of a balanced society. They must therefore facilitate the development and social and societal integration of all citizens, the functioning and development of our society and our governments.
You want to promote this message? We have a great We are all citizens T-shirt for you.
4 – Citizens Are the Only source of Change
In our discussions about our societies, we use many words like institution, organization, government, business, etc.
We need to realize that these are words that we use to describe that some citizens are working together.
Therefore, it is not the institution, the organization, the government or business that does something, it is the citizens that work together. Hence, we are the change.
As mentioned earlier, societies are just the result of:
- our individual actions,
- actions accomplished by groups of citizens,
- the actions of our fellow citizens whom we have elected to manage our societies.
Thus, each of us therefore has an impact on our societies which can be positive or negative.
This is what SOCIETALogy calls our citizen footprint.
The more citizens have a positive footprint, the better the quality of life that results from it, as it lowers the level of social and societal tensions, frictions and conflicts.
5 – We Must Work Together
Since we are:
- all citizens,
- the only source of change,
- all responsible for the functioning and development of our societies,
we need to work together.
The more we work together, the better our societies will be. The best way to work together is to have a model of what we want to achieve and a plan that proposes an approach to achieve our goal.
6 – We Need Models.
As you will see in the section “Deployment”, Citizens & Societies proposes a plan to build better societies together.
However before we can plan, we need scientific models. If we do not have access to models, we scatter around, as we are doing now, which limits our ability to succeed and increase the level of conflict instead of reducing it.
This is where SOCIETALogy is important because it offers two scientific models.
These models describe what a “good” society is, i.e. a balanced society is and what a “good” citizen is, i.e. a competent citizen. These are politically, religiously and philosophically neutral models. They focus on the outcome instead of the source.
A Balanced Society
A balanced society is a society where the vast majority of individual, group and collective actions facilitate the:
- development as well as the social and societal integration of our fellow citizens,
- functioning and development of our societies, and
- functioning and development of our governments.
In doing so we achieve an equilibrium in the way we use resources to help citizens meet both their individual and collective needs.
As we reach this equilibrium we reduce the level of social and societal tensions, frictions and conflicts and we increase our overall quality of life of citizens.
A Competent Citizen
Societalogically speaking, a competent citizen is a citizen who has:
- Acquired information (knowledge)
- Developed skills (know-how)
- Attitude (interpersonal skills),
which will allow him to be personally, socially and societally competent. This means that the citizen has the tools that facilitate:
- His psychological, physical, intellectual, economic development, etc., so that he is a better person for himself.
- His social integration, so that he can have better relationships with others and thus reduce social conflicts.
- His societal integration, so that he can participate actively and positively in the functioning and development of the societies in which he lives and better understand the role of governments.
When citizens are competent, they are able to prevent, solve and manage problems on their own as well as with others while using as less as collective resources as possible. This allows governments to be faster to solve problems that can’t be prevented or better at managing those that are not solvable.
The more competent citizens are, the more performing societies will be, the higher their quality of life will be and the higher the quality of life of their fellow citizens will be.
The two go hand in hand
Of course the two go together. Balanced societies perform better because they make citizens more competent. The reverse is also true, competent citizens increase the performance of their societies as it relates to reducing the level of social and societal tensions, frictions and conflicts and increasing the quality of life.
7 – Governments are our board of directors.
The last element we need to realize is that our governments are our board of directors.
Indeed, since societalogically speaking societies are organizations and that they belong to us, then the best way to understand governments is to view them as our board of directors.
Of course the goal of our board of directors is to create laws and develop programs that will build balanced societies and empower citizens to be competent.
Governments are therefore not three-headed fire-breathing monsters, as some people have led it to believe.
However, the fact that we did not have access to scientific models to help us develop our societies, some governments, or rather, some of our fellow citizens have indeed badly played their part after being elected.
What do we have to do?
Once Citizens & Societies will have accomplished its first phase which consists in transferring knowledge (see below) we will start reviewing the three management pillars of our societies. These are our:
- Governments, their departments and other organizations,
- Legislative assemblies,
- Electoral process.
In all democratic societies, it is these three pillars that create the laws.
So we need to look at each of our pillars and assess whether they are helping us to:
- build balanced societies
- becoming more competent.
At the national level, the legislative assemblies have one more power, the power of creating money.
We must therefore also consider whether the laws that govern or regulate the creation, use and accumulation of money also help us to build balanced societies and to become more competent.
The results of our analyses and evaluations will lead us to:
- Propose improvements on the functioning and development of the pillars 2 and 3, our legislative assemblies and our electoral processes, so that they are compatible with the development of a balanced society.
- Propose improvements to the vision, mission and objectives of the various departments to that they are compatible with the development of a balanced society.
Hence, governmental departments and the various governmental organizations must prevent, solve and manages conflicts as well as increase the competence of citizens.
- Propose improvements so that the use of money helps reduce the level of social and societal conflicts, increase the quality of life for all citizens and help us achieve equilibrium.
Here are some examples of what we can accomplish together.
Department of Education
Every society has a Department of Education. In the context of building balanced societies, there is no department more important than the Department of Education. Indeed the better the education system will be at forming competent citizens the better our societies will be.
Although parents, siblings and other family members play an important role in helping children acquire some of the initial personal, social and even collective competences, it is through the Department of Education that children will learn to master these skills.
Hence the Department of Education should make sure that the program they develop help our apprentice citizen acquire the knowledge and the skills that will help them master their first profession; citizenship.
During the 2nd phase, Citizens & Societies promote dialogue on this subject within its community of so that those who are interested, can discuss the means to be used to implement this best practice.
Department of Interreligious Affairs
Societalogically speaking, the goal that citizens all want to achieve is to have a good quality of life. To achieve this, citizens together with their legislative assemblies must reduce the level of conflict that is present inside the territory of their societies.
In societies where there are many religious conflicts, perhaps some citizens will want to create a department of interreligious relations.
There are initiatives around the world to facilitate interreligious affairs, but there is no department. Societalogically speaking, this would be a best practice.
If successful, a department of interreligious relations would have a positive impact on our societies as religious leaders would help us reach equilibrium. It may even help reduce religious extremism.
To facilitate a respectful and constructive dialogue among religious leaders, discussions should begin by asking the following question:
How can religions participate in the development of balanced societies taking into consideration that all religious people are all citizens of the society in which they live?
So the common denominator that unites Christians, Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists is their citizenship.
Consequently, to facilitate the development of balanced societies, all religious practices must:
- Facilitate the development of citizens, whether they share the same beliefs or not, or whether they are believers or not.
- Facilitate the functioning and development of societies.
- Facilitate the functioning and development of governments.
So no religious practices should harm the development of citizens whether they share the same beliefs or not, or, whether they are believers or not. Furthermore no religious practices should promote the hate of other fellow citizens whether they live in their society or not.
During the 2nd phase, Citizens & Societies promote dialogue on this subject within its community of practice so that those who are interested, can discuss the means to be used to implement this best practice.
Department of Peace
As citizens we need to reduce the level of societal and societal tensions, frictions and conflicts and increase the quality of life inside our own societies.
However, we also need to ensure that the citizens of other societies also benefit from peace. This would help us make better use of our societal resources.
Indeed, by increasing the quantity of resources that we use to promote international peace, we could in the medium or long term reduce our military spending. These are one of the worst expenses we can make, because they only serve to destroy and kill.
Societalogically speaking, since we now have access to societalogical models to facilitate the development of balanced societies, should we be putting more effort into propagating peace?
Citizens & Societies will start a dialogue at the start of the 2nd phase to allow those who are interested to discuss the means to be used to implement this best practice.
A New Generic Constitution
At the end of the exercise, we will have used scientific knowledge to adapt the visions, missions and objectives of the various ministries and public bodies so that we can build balanced societies together.
From these new directions, we will be able to draft a generic constitution which could then be used as a model by all citizens around the world. They will be able to adapt the constitution so that the proposed processes are compatible with their current reality.
To facilitate dialogues and change, Citizens & Societies’s approach will be deployed in three phases.
1st phase – knowledge sharing
We cannot have constructive dialogues without first sharing the same knowledge and use the same language. To do this, Citizens & Societies will make a series of explanatory videos.
The first wave will include at least 3 videos to help us better understand our societies and at least 2 videos to better understand citizenship.
The videos, the two models and the 7 societalogical observations, should be enough to help us start to macromanage our societies and build balanced societies together.
Of course, more videos will be needed to help us increase our level of competency. For example, a video will explain the four types of societal resources that allow us to macromanage our societies. Other videos will explain what is a social system, the role of government, or why we invented money about 10,000 years ago, etc.
All these videos will help us better understand the intricacies of our societies.
2nd phase – Identification of best practices and innovative solutions.
After the first wave of videos is published, Citizens & Societies will launch the community of practice for citizens. This is where we will discuss the macromanagement of our societies and identify best practices.
3rd Phase – Implementation
Of course, the ultimate goal is to build balanced societies. The third phase is to see to the promotion and implementation of the various visions, missions, objectives, means and resources that we have identified in our macromanagement review exercise.
To achieve this, participants will be asked to write and send a letter it to certain politicians, leaders of international organizations and newspapers on a given topic. A model letter will be shared to help participants write their own letter, but the key is to send as many letters as possible.
This is a very fruitful approach that has been used by “Results,” an international organization which exists since 1980. Using this approach, “Result” was able to secure billions of dollars over the years to reduce poverty.
Promoting best practices and social innovations will be a monthly activity and will be coordinated by Citizens & Societies. The calendar below gives an example of the subjects that will be used to promote some of the best practices already identified.
|International Education Day||January 24th||Promote citizenship as a profession|
|International women’s day||March 8th||Promote equal representation for women in our legislative assemblies|
|Freedom of the Press||May 3rd||Promote the principle of impartiality|
The more citizens will support Citizens & Societies the more options we will have to increase our impact on our societies.
Hence, it is possible that we create local, national and intermediary level chapters. We may even coordinate international actions or events.
Of course the individual, social and collective needs of citizens is different from society to society, so is the desire to change.
Hence each society will find its own path to make their citizens more competent and build balanced societies together. However, whatever the path, by using the scientific models, our societies will be more and more compatible with each other.
Support Citizens & Societies
Do you like what you see? Do you want us to become more competent citizens? Do you want us to work together to achieve equilibrium? If so, you can support Citizens & Societies in 3 ways:
|1 – Subscribing to our YouTube Channel and our Facebook page,
2 – Buying our “We are All Citizens” T-shirt (Coming soon) or
3 – Making a donation.
Thank you for your support
Builder of balanced societies