Re: Moving Back from Consensus
From: R Philip Dowds (
Date: Mon, 14 Dec 2020 10:53:50 -0800 (PST)
I guess I have a different picture of the situation:  For me, *sociocracy* is a 
particular *structure* of inter-related circles and roles having group-assigned 
duties and delegated powers, and populated by democratically selected 
individuals.  “Consensus* is a formal decision-making *process* adaptable to 
any circle, but probably most useful and necessary at the plenary level.  In 
theory, the Department of Agriculture structure could make decisions by the 
consensus process, and sociocratic circles could choose to make decisions by 
simple majority vote, or even by asking the magic 8-ball.


> On Dec 14, 2020, at 1:12 PM, Mac Thomson via Cohousing-L <cohousing-l [at] 
>> wrote:
> I find it interesting that people distinguish between consensus and 
> sociocracy as if they are two different things. In my understanding, 
> sociocracy is a form of consensus with clearly spelled out procedures, 
> organizational structure, delegation, etc. Both forms allow all participants 
> to consent to a decision.
> It seems to me a bit like the distinction between intentional communities and 
> cohousing. Cohousing is a subset of intentional communities with certain 
> specifically spelled out criteria.
> I admire the workings of sociocracy and feel that if our community decided to 
> adopt it, we would not be departing from consensus. We’d just be moving to a 
> certain well defined and organized form of consensus. Not having worked 
> within sociocracy and only having studied it, maybe my understanding is 
> wrong. Thoughts from others working within sociocracy?
> Cheers,
> Mac
> -- 
> Mac Thomson
> Heartwood Cohousing
> Southwest Colorado
> <>

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