Virtual communities can learn from evolution

Evolutionary science has many lessons for our online communities

David Bollier offers a very interesting overview perspective of a workshop co-sponsored by the Berkman Centre and The Gruter Institute.The workshop, involving lawyers, biologists, social scientists, technologists and policy experts, focussed on what evolutionary science and "commons scholarship" can teach us about the social architecture of co-operative on-line communities ('on-line commons').

Topics such as:

  • How people share real life "common resources"
  • The importance and practicalities of "reputation systems" in reducing the risk of dealing we people we don't physically meet
  • How we can learn from natural immune systems in the ways we can protect the online community against 'rogue outsiders'
  • The experience of Open Source Software (OSS) as a victory of ST ("Social Technology") over IT and the innovative energy released through common ownership approaches

These are important topics for those of us trying to develop a more biological and evolutionary view of organisations, teams and networks

To read David’s article and visit his blog

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