Démopolitique, a crowdsolving tool


At first, it was just an idea : a democratic debate platform where you link arguments with sources.

It took me four months to confront this idea to others, make searches, modelise it and a month to develop it with Drupal, an open source CMS.

The name has been chosen somehow by default while my brother and I were looking for a hostname. Démopolitique seemed to be only used as a contraction of demographic politics, demopolitique.anything was available so we chose it, and it really made sense.

Demos from ancient greek : the people and Politics in the sense of affairs of the city, as it was modeled by Aristote.

And it’s exactly about that : a place to let the people discuss about the affairs of the city.

The main idea was to create a sane environment to debate, to create conditions and formulate its principles to allow a constructive debate.

I made a lot of searches in order to design it, especially about crowdsourcing and crowdsolving. It lead me to the idea to instumentalise dialectic by using modern communication tools.

When people meet physically to discuss important matters, there are a lot of parameters that can alter, make difficult or impossible a dialectic process. In virtual environments such as forums, there are others parameters that can lead to pointless discussions that lead nowhere.

Démopolitique is thought to get rid of these parameters, or to use them.

Some parameters that can alter a dialectic process are pointed in this discussion (in french).

We have used this tool with some friends to discuss matters such as capitalism and as you can see, there are a lot of informations in this discussion. Each of us found informations and shared it, we thought about it, and later, each of us formulated his thoughts about capitalism. The result just went beyond my craziest expectations. We now all know how money is created, the economics absurdity that rule the world, and each one of us shared his sight of the problem and pointed specific parameters that, if altered, could change things.

During the process of this discussion, we have learned, searched, thought, wrote and shared our sights and it made us more aware of theses problems.

We have also tried to get relevant information to start debates on knowledge and searches, not opinions or ideas.

Another exemple could be this essay about a psychological mechanism : la dilution de la responsabilité.

I’ve tried to do my best to find good references to enhance the quality of the reasonment, and the answers to this essay have just improved this reasonment by opening it to domains i wouldn’t have thought otherwise.

Actually démopolitique is in beta stage. I’ve developped it with the precious help and advices of my brothers and friends, but I can’t continue to develop it on my own. I’m not a technical guy, i’m a writer, and i’m much better with words and concepts than with codes.

There are a lot of tools already designed that just wait human help or funding.

To be honest it’s a tricky and complicated thing, and i have some difficulties to find people to discuss about the most important : démopolitique in its principles and its core, but also its tools.

It’s a democratic place, so everything can be discussed and modified to adapt quickly to reality.

For exemple, at the first release, there was a voting tool. We discussed about it, and a friend got a good argument that convinced us to remove it.

It was just about dialectic : we had different opinions, he got the better arguments and reasoning, we accepted it and adapted the tool to match better with reality.

I’ve worked more than six months on this platform, night and day. At some point i even forgot myself and got physically and mentally exhausted.

I went forward thanks to my bros and friends, and because i knew it could work. And it did.

It’s a tool for people made by people.

I don’t wanna earn money from my past work or anything, I just need some funds to get a development team, because some aspects are real technical challenges as a lot of tools i’ve designed simply don’t exist.

What would contribute to develop this project?

We stand at the dawn of the exploration of platforms and online communities that allow to manage collective intelligence, Edgeryders being one of them. And it should not be considered as the unique possibility.

Diversified strategies - not putting all eggs in the same basket - are usually more successful than single ideologies.

I see your tool as having a potential to explore possible solutions to global problems. There is a great need for discussions about responsibility, citizen engagement, and many other topics. In many areas, governments are not sure how to go forward to, and how to engage citizens.

The OpenIDEO platform does a fantastic job at applying a creative process to find design solutions to global problems. Although this is a wonderful platform, I find that it is too oriented toward design to address  broad social or political problems in an effective way.  But I like its brainstorming portion of a process. Edgeryders also has a process unrolling through time. Themes are explored, and this leads to a certain degree of convergence, at an event, with possibilities of deliverables.

One factor for success about Edgeryders is that other than asking participants base their contribution on their personal experience, there is not really a way to go about it. There is no requirement that participants to comply to a strict discipline. Timeless and virtual environments help to discuss about ideas. One can interrupt the conversation and come back at any desired time, to add another layer, or comment, or introduce a different angle.

Finding the right support is a recurring theme raised by the Edgeryders participants. One of the biggest challenge is securing financial support from outside one’s own personal network, said researchers Rebecca Collins and Valentina Cuzzocrea (ref, systhesis report). Identifying teammates to develop a project is not so difficult. Finding the resources to allow this team to work together is a main challenge!

Do you think that researchers, decision makers, sociologists, philosophers, etc. could take an interest in collaborating to your project? In your opinion, what would contribute to develop this project?

What’s needed to develop demopolitique

Language specialists, philosophers…

There are some discussions like this one about l’arborescence conceptuelle or this one where they could be of great help. There are also some advices to help contributors.

Open government specialists

démopolitique is a tool to collaboratively resolve society issues. It can be adapted to organise life in families, communities, towns, states, or with a global point of vue. It’s a democratic tool in the sense that its convention is a discussion and can always be modified to adapt to the needs or the concerns of the many. Also the tools or anything related to démopolitique are to be discussed to be justified.


I’m self-educated in a lot of domains, but my technical knowledge is really poor. A lot of tools are planned i just can’t do on my own.

  • integration of tools like AlchemyAPI to extract concepts from discussion and link things together in a smoother way than using community tags.

  • translation tools : to allow anyone to translate a discussion in any language.

  • organic groups : it’s installed but i don’t have time to configure it properly.

  • points and achievements systems : to reward every contribution.

  • collaborative tools : to let people help each other with advices, orthographic corrections…

  • qualification system : talked briefly about it there. There’s already a flag system integrated, it could be easily developed.

There are others things i’ve planned, but… you know, there’s a part of mistery in everything. :wink:

Anyone can


There are already a few discussions on various topics : http://demopolitique.com/taxonomy/term/13

You can react on it, add links with the reference links modules, or start your own discussion.


There’s a démothèque, a kind of library where we put every intersting link in order to promote responsible and autonomous ways of life and everything that is related to politics, tools…

If you know something cool that isn’t in there, just submit it. I’m a bit late on that one, i’ve got dozen of interesting links i could add.

Démopolitique and edgeryders

Edgeryders website seems to use Drupal as well, and uses some interesting features such as missions, and tools i was planning to integrate such as the points system. Mixing the two things could be possible.


I’d like to get funds to create a cooperative to develop and maintain the platform. For that, I’m not looking for sponsorship, but patrons. Démopolitique needs to stay neutral and not to depend on any institution or person. It’s a tool for the people and the people only. Decisions makers are welcome to contribute on discussions, but they can to do it as citizen, not decision makers.

Play some missions to help you identify potential collaborators

Thank you for giving some hints of what would help to continue grow.

I am sure it will help those who read these suggestions to get a brief overview of what would be your needs.

At my municipal government (City of Trois-Rivières), there is an economic development and innovation program, which accepts (well… in theory) projects of social businesses. They provide support for three months to help candidates write a decent business and financial plan. They give a grant of $5,000 as startup funding. The provincial government offers a year’s salary to candidates accepted by the municipality, as part of a program for self-employed workers. Is there something similar in your area that you could apply? Is there a hub, or group that could give you a hand?

I encourage you to play two/three mission:

BRING ON THE ALLIES. This mission report will help you identify who are your allies. http://edgeryders.ppa.coe.int/making-living/bring-allies

  • Who are your allies? Is anything or anyone playing a positive role? Maybe your family, an institution or a venture capitalist? A mentor? Your peers, maybe?
  • How are they supporting you?
  • Is anyone encouraging you to take some risks towards more fulfilling, interesting, better paid work? Or are people around you recommending that you take the safest route?
Most importantly, SPOTLIGHT: SOCIAL INNOVATION http://edgeryders.ppa.coe.int/making-living/spotlight-social-innovation
  • Find and describe a socially innovative company, initiative or project near you (if possible, interview the social innovator who made it possible) that you find inspiring. Do you think it has a chance to actually make the world a little better? Why?
Also have a look at the HELP US EVALUATE SOURCES OF FUNDING FOR SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURS / SOCIAL INNOVATORS mission, and what the participants have written. http://edgeryders.ppa.coe.int/we-people/help-us-evaluate-sources-funding-social-entrepreneurs-social-innovators

These missions will help you continue to think and look for inspiring people that you could eventually connect with.

Good idea

I’ve looked at many different kinds of fundings but until recently, i didn’t have enough time and mobility to get to it.

I’ll get to a sanbox community monthly dinner in a few days, it may be a start.

I’m pretty lazy (by lazyness, i mean i’m always looking for the faster and most efficient way) and the various helps i can get from collectivites are really annoying and long to get, don’t really cover my needs, and often have conditions i can’t accept.

I.e : at some time, i wanted to get an old house for cheap to restore it with my friends with eco-responsible materials. There are a lot of government helps for that, but all of them require you to pay professionals to do the work. We don’t have money for that, and we wanna do it by ourselves to learn from the process…

I made some searches, and i wondered that almost every government or more local fundings have this kind of conditions. I know politics still think economical growth is necessary, and they try by these means to force people to participate to this. I understand the reasoning, but it leads to a sad reality : if your project isn’t about making money, and if you don’t have money, it’s pretty hard to get fundings.

To be honest, i just hate money. It just has no value to me, and i’m convincend it’s one of the most absurd thing nowadays (money is created by banks when someone borrowes money, it’s just non-sense to me), but unfortunately, we need some of it in this society.

And i need a lot to make happen some of my ideas. So i’ll go where money is. Banks, millionaires, patrons…

I’ve been working as seller in shops, as a commercial… Wasn’t happy doing this, but, you know, when you sell your product, it’s something else than selling another’s product.

It’s mostly about time and willing. I repeat i hate money and much more luxury, expensive things, so i’m not so happy to get to meet this kind of people. I’d prefer to walk in nature, write, see friends or build things with my bare hands…

But i’m also ready to do what needs to be done to make things happen.

I’ll do these missions, already have a few ideas. Thanks for the tips.

An experiment to broaden horizons, explore new paths

Edgeryders is an experimental project, where hypothesis were made, and campaigns were deployed around to match these hypothesis. Several missions were created, in an attempt at collecting data from the young people, and probing into their lives, probing into different ways of doing things and lifestyles.

Consider the available missions as exploratory possibilities. They might not 100% fit your needs, but they might bring a few answers, and perhaps help you make choices, and adopt various options.

Yesterday before going to bed, I read Cataspanglish’s mission report about Elf Pavlik. http://edgeryders.ppa.coe.int/quest-paid-work/mission_case/making-living-edge-elf-pavlik

You should have a look at this report! Pavlik has succeeded in completely removing money from his life. From the bits and pieces of your conversations, it is a lifestyle that might inspire you.

Pavlik’s story keeps floating in my mind. I proposed at Edgeryders a model of a Luminous Man. I have not yet completed the business plan corresponding to this model, because I am still at the phase of trying to figure out the cause at a quantum level, and their effects and how it works. I know that many people do not want to consider this model and possibilities, but one cannot ignore the fact that there are several individuals, like Pavlik, and many others, who are living by applying completely different sets of values in their lives than mainstream society. Why is that? Where does it come from? What does it teach us?

Keep looking for what would be best for you…