Is small beautiful?

Increasingly, people are warming to the “small is beautiful”, motto as a way of moving away from the hierarchies of big organisations. People are also seduced by the local as a better way of organising than the national or the transitional.

In his book, Reinventing Organisations, Laloux charts the trajectory for how all kinds of communities have organised themselves to produce or distribute resources — from shamanic tribes to self-managing teams, via bureaucracies, shareholders and other networks.

It can be difficult to think outside, let alone behave outside of the cultural frames we’ve internalised, based around transactional thinking, rather than relational, hunter-gatherer over sharer-carer, or hierarchical over the networked forms of governance.

The pushback to these inbuilt norms has surfaced through people valuing emotion over rationality, rebels over the elites, even if the desire for strong charismatic leaders is even more pronounced.

How can local government become more self-managing and relational?

How can it support organisations they commission and their supply chain?



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Head of Policy Design, Scrutiny & Partnerships @newhamlondon #localgov Co-founder of #systemschange & #servicedesign progs. inspired by @cescaalbanese