#FLOKSociety: Ecuador wants to become a 'paradise of free
knowledge' and turn its economy towards the common good
For the first time in History, an entire Nation is committed to change its economic and social system
for a new one based on free licenses, free/open technologies and collaborative paradigms.
Based on the National Plan for Good Living (Buen Vivir), the FLOK Society project is the cornerstone
of the Ecuadorian productive matrix’s change. A team of international experts, led by Michel Bauwens
(P2P Foundation), performs an open research to build the public policies proposals that will sustain
In late May, an international summit of experts, collectives, activists and global civil society will gather
in Quito in order to study the transition to a Free Knowledge Society.
FLOK (Free/Libre Open Knowledge) Society, Buen Conocer or Sumak Yachay (Good
Knowedge), is a project of collaborative research and participatory design to change the
productive matrix of Ecuador towards a Social Economy of Common with Free and Open
Access to Knowledge. FLOK Society is a proposal that sets out an alternative to the social and
economic model of neoliberalism, which bases its production on perishable resources (natural
resources) and privatizes knowledge.
FLOK Society aims to create a new political and social model based on infinite resources
(knowledge) and free technology. Framed within the National Plan for Good Living, FLOK opens a
path based on (non-quantitative) relational goods, collaborative paradigms and the economy of the
common good. The change of the productive matrix -the removal of oil extraction in Ecuador- is under
study. For this purpose, the FLOK Society research team works together with the Ecuadorian people
and the global civil society.
FLOK Society is part of an interagency agreement between the Institute of National Advanced
Studies (IAEN), the Ministry of Coordination of Knowledge and Talent (MCCTH) and the Secretary of
Higher Education, Science and Technology (SENESCYT). FLOK Society's initial goal was to open a
process of research and participation through workshops, meetings, events and on-line collaborative
platforms (wiki, PADS, hangouts...). The result of this research, led by Michel Bauwens (P2P
Foundation founder) and with the participation of high level consultants like David Harvey and Jérémie
Zimmermann (La Quadrature do Net), will lead to an international meeting to be held in Quito in late
At the summit, the 10 documents of public policy proposals will be developed in different fields.
The documents -developed by researchers- will be edited and worked by the event attendees. Drafts
of these documents are now accessible via the wiki platform of FLOK Society. In fact, FLOK research
is currently in an opening phase. On Friday March 18 the first hangout between researchers and civil
society will be held. The research relies on transmedia formats and network dialogue.
The research team is formed by:
FLOK directors: Xabier Barandiaran & Daniel Vázquez
Research Director - MD. Michel Bauwens (Belgium)
Research Coordinator - PhD. Daniel Araya (Canada)
Research Consultants - PhD. David Harvey, PhD. Miguel Robles-Durán
Human Capabilities - PhD. Daniel Araya
Commons-oriented Productive Capacities - PhD George Dafermos (Greece)
Social Infrastructure and Institutional Innovation - M.A. John Restakis (Canada)
Open Technical Infrastructures - PhD. Jenny Torres (Ecuador)
Commons’ Infrastructure for Collective Life - MBA, M.Sc. Janice Figueiredo (Brazil)
The FLOK Society research purpose and design is a priority within the pillars of the National Plan for
Good Living. The Wikicoesc + i (Code of Social Economy of Knowledge and Innovation) is part of
the change in the production matrix driven by the FLOK Society process.
The FLOK Society process could create a legal, methodological and scientific protocol (a how to) to
bring any State, region or city towards the economy of the common good.
Neoliberalism has been implementing the shock doctrine for decades (taking advantage of
catastrophic situations to impose the capitalist system). From now on, the world will have an
Ecuadorian recipe to change the productive matrix to overcome the global economic crisis: the FLOK
FLOK Society has 5 research streams:
This research stream will focus on institutional support for capacity building with emphasis on open
learning and community collaboration. It is an essential stream to encourage reciprocity and value
creation based on the commons.
Commons-oriented Productive Capacities
The purpose of this research stream is to improve the productive capacity of the Ecuadorian economy.
It aims to study how to build a peer production economy (p2p). Topics: open / sustainable agriculture;
entrepreneurship and innovation networks based on open and common designs; decentralized
distribution and open mechanical infrastructure; and distribution networks of clean and renewable
Social Infrastructure and Institutional Innovation
This research will focus on the institutional support necessary for the transition (and their livelihood in
time) to a social economic system based on reciprocity, cooperation, exchange and value creation
based on the commons. It includes an analysis of the legislation concerning cooperatives, NGOs and
social enterprises. It will also include a review of public policies related to the promotion and
dissemination of social and solidarity economy.
Open Technical Infrastructures
This stream aims to identify open standards and norms, as well as the common direction of the digital
infrastructure. It will also address the privacy, security and rights of collective and individual
expressions through digital media. The research aims to ensure privacy; limit dependence on a
centralized infrastructure and under foreign control; set limits on monitoring citizens and establish
property rights of personal data.
Commons’ Infrastructure for Collective Life
Research on this topic will examine how a common and open infrastructure can promote sustainable
ways of living. In this context, the research argues that physical infrastructures (housing, health care
places and even food) are basic and fundamental needs and human rights, as it is considered in the
Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It will examine how commons-oriented practices usually can
improve the availability and quality of such physical infrastructure in the public sphere.
Nathalia Sánchez // firstname.lastname@example.org +59323829900 ext 354
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