Jur is offering five prizes of $2,000 USD plus 1,000 $JUR in the Startup Society Founders’ Awards. The awards focus attention on the opportunity to develop rapidly evolving new societies with the aid of blockchain technology.

We live under the influence and control of complex systems of social organization and governance that evolved gradually over centuries. Our world order is created by agreements between nation-states and our local governments’ power, which also derives from nation-states. We might assume this is the way things have always been done and the only way to do things, but the nation-state system is only a few centuries old. The nation-state system might change a lot over the next century, but it is not designed for rapid change. Fortunately, if we want to accelerate the rate of social evolution, there is another option. 

The Startup Society concept is designed to support the rapid creation of digital-first societies with clear simple rules and values and provide a transparent and auditable system for proposing, voting on, and implementing new features for societies. The Startup Society model envisions multiple opt-in groups that people can freely choose to join. In this model, an individual citizen may belong to multiple societies but does not have to belong to any. People can voluntarily self-organize based on shared values and priorities and experiment with rules that support their own ideals. 

These digital-first Startup Societies will exist in the context of the nation-state system. Eventually, some startup societies might crowdfund territory around the world, providing direct physical access to citizens of many or all nations. They might also seek free enterprise zone status and diplomatic recognition, eventually becoming distributed peers to nation-states, a new type of entity called a network state. But even a digital-only society could have a very meaningful impact. 

Consider a simple example: a Society for digital nomads who are committed to sustainable development. A Society founder could propose a list of values and priorities and invite people to join a digital community. The founder could then propose rules and invite society members to vote. For instance, everyone could agree to purchase a group health insurance policy for nomads and informally commit to only staying in locally owned lodging and purchasing carbon offsets for travel. Eventually, the Society might choose to crowdfund some co-working and living spaces, but clearly, a Startup Society can provide benefits for its citizens even if it is purely digital. 

Now that you understand the Startup Society concept and how it could be useful, Jur invites you to pitch your own Startup Society proposal. How could people who share your values, interests, and priorities freely associate in ways that improve their lives? 

Apply now.