4.2 The interdependent economy


    We are ready for a new economic model (and with that, a new social and political model, too). I call this sharing economic model, the domain of value creation within Society 3.0, the “interdependent economy,” an economic system based on:

    – Solidarity
    – Sustainability
    – Reciprocity

    Actually, it is a logical next step in the development of our society. History shows us a certain evolutionary order of ranking in different economic systems that, evidently, had limited shelf lives. Every system was suitable for the specific circumstances of that period. Evidently, economic systems are transient, which is caused by changing environmental factors. Because of this, systems no longer connect to social reality at a certain stage.

    “After the decline of the classic economies, the first outlines of a market-oriented system arose in the early days of the European Community that emphatically focused its attention on redistribution and brought about solidarity between economic factions. This variant became ultimately known as the Rhineland Model. The interests of different groups in the society were discussed, attuned, and negotiated between their representatives, the social partners. The problem in our current juncture is that representatives have become redundant, because people are in direct contact with the ‘end-organizations’ thanks to social media. Global warming, supervision of the global banking system, and depletion of our natural resources also can not be coordinated in the Rhineland Model. Redistribution mechanisms simply do not work and so this most recent variant of capitalism has reached its limits and with that clearing the way for a next emerging, yet to be awakened variant.
    In contrast with socialist redistribution policies, the Interdependent Economy is trying to create an innovative and visionary solution for today’s big challenges. This new ecosystem will, once again, need leadership based on vision and authenticity. The mutual dependency – of time, place, and of social groups – shape the starting point of this system. It requires an intelligent design if we want the problems of these times to be adequately tackled.”
    – Marcel van Marrewijk, Research to Improve BV, in an interview in 2010

    The interdependent economy will create value by leaving the value chain and adapting our value systems to a sort of continuous productivity system that fosters a seamless integration between consumer and business platforms. Continuous Productivity manifests itself in an environment in which the evolving tools and culture make it possible to innovate more and faster than ever, with significantly improved execution. Continuous productivity shifts our efforts from the start/stop world of episodic work and work products to one that builds on the technologies that start to answer what happens when, in Society30, a generation of free agents has access to the collective knowledge of an entire profession, and experts are easy to find and connect with. And these experts have access to data, knowledge, and analysis, so they develop the ability to time slice, context switch, and proactively deal with situations as they arise.

    “Today, after a long history of regional success, the nation-state is failing us on the global scale. It was a perfect recipe for the liberty and independence of autonomous people and nations. It is utterly unsuited to interdependence. The city, always the human habitat of first resort, has in today’s globalizing world once again become democracy’s best hope.”
    Benjamin R. Barber: “If Mayors Ruled The World”.

    The location of these Society30 citizens and their globally interconnected networks, will be in cities. Big, big cities – agglomerations of over 20, 30, or even 50 million people. That way, these cities are also globally-connected through their inhabitants and start to act interdependently with other big cities. They even will have their own currencies, like the Calgary Dollar or the Brixton Pound and may even accept corporate and/or virtual currencies, like Amazon Coins or Bitcoins.

    Cities will become more influential and more important than the actual countries they are located in, and also more important than the European Union. The economic potential is huge. If we really start collaborating within European cities, and create, for instance, a free-trade zone with a number of U.S. cities, we would have over 1 billion consumers with an income totaling over €26 trillion. And, how about the sharing and collaboration possibilities of all those consumers? A real paradigm shift, to put it mildly…

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