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Setting the stage for Information Datanomics

This is a guest blog post by Joss Sessions, who attended the first Radically Open Recovery session on 22 October 2020 and shared his work on Information Datanomics in the context of post-pandemic recovery.

How do we as individuals, a community and a society find value in todays hyper connected world that has very specific local impacts which influences global events?

To build back better, we need to fix the internet; to fix the internet we need to fix our models of society. To influence better we need to understand value in context.

For 200 years we have perfected the models of consumption on ideals that are outdated with todays demands of social and environmental compassion.

For the last 60 years, we have adopted a technological marvel, the Internet. The Internet Telecommunications Union estimates that there are 4.1billion users of the Internet in 2020, thats 53% of the worlds population with the figure set to increase. As explored in the Netflix hit, social dilemma our offline and online cultures continually clash, influencing a myriad of outcomes. The human world bristles with data points recording, sending and receiving vast volumes of data to and from Users and their tools. All this data and information is about what, where and how we trade (money), it is how we celebrate and express ourselves (culture) and it is how, why and where we care for ourselves, each other and our planet (compassion). It creates new values, new power structures, new communities, new cultures, new identities.

And yet, for the last 60 years, we have tried to apply the new power of the Internet and most recently the WorldWideWeb, to our old power structures of consumption. Climate change, social inequality and COVID-19 are not causes, they are effects and symptoms of our mass, frictionless global trade of our mass consumption of products, services and recently, content. Its the business model of society; extract stuff, to make stuff, to sell stuff, to replace stuff to measure stuff at the expense of other stuff.

As demonstrated in the model 20th Century Models of economy and the 21st Century technological challenges, the base models where never intended for such opportunity, such power which is why, around the world we see great divides and great challenges.

Credit: Joss Sessions

So. The fix.

Traditionally, consumption places the value on the product, service and content on the end result in a linear fashion. However as explored in Circular Economic Theory, scientific understanding of resource extraction and pollution and the ever adapting cultural economies, there is so much more value that is involved in our communities that feedbacks, influences and impacts. Shifting to a model of economic, environmental and cultural sustainability, we can place the value on the trade, the share, the exchange. Elements of both capitalism and socialism is part of finding the balance; we need a system that pays but equally we need a system that recognises the type of information and data that accounts this. This information recognition is called "Information Supply Chains".

Information Supply Chains happen everyday, across the entire communities. Much of these transfers are unrecognised because an active monetary value can not be applied using present models. However, many of these actions create, influence and contribute to different types of data streams, personal and interpersonal, public and private, commercial and industrial. By creating 'Information Supply Chains', the values exchanged can be recognised and rewarded in a direct and indirect manner.

This is not to value a green recovery over a cultural recovery or a health recovery over an economic recovery, all are as important and are all interdependent. Furthermore, as we do in our old power structures, there are grades of influence, of accessibility which feedback into grades of value and of trust. Presently, online the grades are predominately based on how much value can be extracted (ie, advertising value). However, by applying adaptable grades within each Information Supply Chain, varying levels of judged supply, demand, standards and importance to each User, information data can be made accountable (trusted); thus value is applied whatever the type of data, act or trade happens, either in the active moment, or the long term passive.

Information Datanomics does just that. The model adds 'Content' as a measure to 'Products' and 'Services' to be validated in context of 'Information Exchange' (online internet exchange), 'Governance' (laws and regulation) and 'Place' (Offline physical). Everything interlinks in multi-dimensional flows of information allowing anyone in the model to be identified as a 'User'. It is for each User at every stage of the supply chain to influence where and how their information (data) is used.

Credit: Joss Sessions

But fear not, this is not another one of those lofty thinking fantasies that never have to be proved wrong or right. We've started building the Engine to power the models so that the User, can actively track the data values on The Container Engine.

Application into society

This is where things start to get really exciting; how to make it relatable to our fantastically diverse online and offline 'augmented' global communities(human and natural); which all have different attributes but all either interlink or don't in endless nuance webs of impact, influence and need.

To do this, several theories have been combined, two of the most notable; the concept of New Power by Henry Timms & Jeremy Heimans and Trophic Downgrading identified by a visionary team of biologists, influenced by Robert Paine. By combining these theories with Information Datanomics, The Container Engine can begin to map info-eco systems in our communities of all sizes in all contexts.

This enables the opportunity to recognise the value of assets such as culture, compassion and environmental credentials that have long term passive values as well as active values such as exchange for product and services in context to supply, demand and standards. So whether its a facebook like, a community notice board, a content creator, a care giver or receiver or environmental impact indicator, everything creates a data point that contributes toa value exchange in the "Supply Chain of Information Value." Importantly, for balance, the system also recognises factors of establish 'old power' such centralised power, the use of combustion engines or information to sell which all influence a particular 'Information Supply Chain' context.

Credit: Joss Sessions

I have been developing this idea for three years, often in dark holes and corners of society and the internet, but it is time now to release it. I would love to create a movement that is focused on building back better, fairer and trusted. As I am sure you the reader can imagine, this is just the super summary version, the link is a longer "What and How" document which explores the theories and case studies. Our business models and strategy is also available on request.

Please, if there is anything you wish to discuss or find out more, please don't hesitate to get in touch.

Be Bold. Be Fair. There is great Opportunity.