Cobudget & Collective Finance
I wanted to give you a short update on some new things I am working on that might be of interest to some of you. As many of you know, I stepped back from chairing OuiShare Fest last year and since have been thinking about which area to focus my energy on next. My explorations to other communities and networks made me realize that there is topic that has kept coming up in different aspects of my work: collective finance and resource allocation as a cornerstone for transforming organizations to become more agile, open and collaborative.
Why work on collective finance?
Having often been the person running budgets in OuiShare as well as having been part of diverse experiments around value distribution and more collaborative ways of budgeting, I keep coming to the same conclusion: we still lack the financial infrastructure, literacy and practices to make distributed leadership and emergent ways of organizing a true reality. I don’t see how we can transform organizations and society if we don’t also tackle how to make resource distribution more transparent and less centralized. Money may be one of the hardest place to start, but it is also very tangible, which is why I am personally very driven to work on this.
At the moment a team of 4 others and I are in the process of creating an organization called Greaterthan, with the mission to make collective finance easy and accessible for groups, communities, networks and organizations. In February, we took over the stewardship of Cobudget from the Enspiral network and are now working to support the developlement of an ecosystem of collective finance software tools and (human) practices.
Collective finance & OuiShare
At the moment our team is “consult-strapping” (like boot-strapping with consulting :) )and trying to learn as much as we can from this to define the direction of the development of Cobudget. This consulting work around collective finance goes hand in hand with the more general organizational transformation work already happening in the OuiShare ecosystem, so it will be also be very connected to OuiShare Experience & the Rethink & Remix project (where we’re offering a Masterclass on collective finance etc.).
If you know any organizations or groups that could be interested in exploring how they could implement collective finance, it would be great if you could put me in touch! Since this field is so new and there are not that many people working in it yet, I’m also keen to connect with any people you know looking into these topics as well (the like of Opencollective, CollectiveOne etc.).
Lastly, as many of you know, we’ve been experimenting with using Cobudget in OuiShare for about one year now. There is still A LOT to be done to make Cobudget really support OuiShare’s work fluidly, and that is one of the things I will be working on improving in the coming year. Any feedback or thoughts on this are most welcome.
- Excitingly, we were selected to receive a small grant of 30 K from the Prototypefund to kickstart our work
- With Greaterthan, I applied to a program called the Edmund Hillary Fellowship (a non-paid fellowship, a little like an accelerator), a 3 year program bringing together entrepreneurs and investors that want to work on global problems from and with the ecosystem in New Zealand, and have been accepted! That means that I will be spending a few months each year in NZ starting this October.
If you are curious about learning more about this program, let me know and I’d be happy to tell you more about it!