Agreement-Based Governance

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= ambitious project by Greg Cassel: "agreement-based governance is a minimal and generalized framework of consent-based specifications for creative governance".



Greg Cassel:

"Official social structure is not innately desirable. However, it can help people to coordinate activities which support personal or shared goals. Such coordination rarely requires coercion.

As digital networking matures, our official social structures can evolve into increasingly organic, flexible agreements between mutually consenting peers who develop and support goals which they genuinely share.

Some ideas in ‘agreement-based governance’ are old, and others have recently emerged. My key influences here include innovators in Loomio, Enspiral and Value Flows. Many thanks to the editorial contributors listed in this document’s heading. Ongoing feedback is welcome in public comments in the WIP-RFC version, in related media, and by personal email.

Part One here, Creating Agreements, suggests principles and practices for making and modifying agreements which are consistently based on the direct consent of agents. Part Two, Complexly Related Agreements, suggests how to extend such principles to the peer-based management of deeply complex and creative goals. Emerging communication and collaboration tools make it increasingly feasible to develop such complexly adaptive, organic social processes and systems." (


Greg Cassel:

"Compared to the rough consensus of Sociocracy 3.0, and Holacracy, agreement-based governance is a minimal and generalized framework of consent-based specifications for creative governance. It's a framework for developing complexly adaptive written agreements in all social contexts: within groups, between groups, between individuals and groups, and peer-to-peer. It’s a framework for developing exploratory discussion and media-sharing networks, as well as work agreements and economic commitments.

To the best of my knowledge, agreement-based governance is the first community-building framework which completely supports personal choice and the integrity of interpersonal agreements at potentially massive scales of organization.

Admittedly, we need much more than inclusive creative frameworks to improve our interactions and communities. We must learn from organizational systems throughout history, and from the co-working and co-living experiences of active communities. As a matter of modular design, however, I distinguish this creative framework (or matrix) from all complete ‘recipes’ or plans for community management, including my own."