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A governance layer for the Internet — The Metagovernance Project

Joshua Tan
Mathematician, theoretical computer scientist @ Oxford. Project lead @ Metagov.org
・3 min read

An early UI mockup for Metagov.

Project overview

Hi Mozfest! I’m Josh, one of the founders of the Metagovernance Project. We’re building a software toolkit, Metagov, that helps online communities build their own digital governance systems. Using Metagov, communities can spin up democracies, governance boards, reputation systems, juries, and even full-fledged economies with the click of a few buttons. Thanks to the Grant for the Web, we're building web monetization support directly into the Metagov toolset so that community websites will be able to govern a collective wallet.

Project team

Our core team:

  • Miriam Ashton, Metagovernance Project
  • Federica Carugati, Stanford University
  • Primavera De Filippi, Harvard & CNRS
  • Seth Frey, University of California, Davis
  • Shauna Gordon-McKeon, Galaxy Rise Consulting
  • Lawrence Lessig, Harvard Law School
  • Ricardo Saavedra
  • Vincent Russell, University of Colorado Boulder
  • Nathan Schneider, University of Colorado Boulder
  • Joshua Tan, University of Oxford
  • Michael Zargham, Block Science & University of Vienna
  • Amy Zhang, University of Washington

And a shout out to all the awesome people in the extended Metagov community / seminar!

What we are doing

Metagov itself is a “governance layer” for connecting, interoperating, and orchestrating a whole bunch of other governance apps and services. It doesn’t work without those apps. That’s why we’re starting by integrating projects like Loomio, SourceCred, Open Collective, and the Stanford Participatory Budgeting Platform as Metagov modules alongside in-house modules like PolicyKit, CommunityRule, and Govbase, in order to pilot this experiment.

If you're interested in learning more, feel free to drop me a line (josh@metagov.org) or drop by one of our (weekly seminars)[www.metagov.org/seminar] for a fun discussion.

What community support would benefit your project?

Do you run an online community or an independent social platform? Let us know; we are always looking for beta testers!

Link Round Up!

Highlight other projects

Metagov is built on top of a whole host of awesome open-source projects; in some sense, we built Metagov because we wanted to make all these projects more accessible and more interoperable. We listed a bunch of projects above already, but here are some more that we love: Civic Tech Field Guide, Constitute, Aragon, DAOstack, Kleros.

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