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Next Generation Democracy: What the Open-Source Revolution Means for Power, Politics, and Change
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Next Generation Democracy: What the Open-Source Revolution Means for Power, Politics, and Change

3.93  ·  Rating Details  ·  56 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
The challenges of the twenty-first century are of an unprecedented scale. Climate change, financial instability, the housing crisis, the need for health care—all of these are political issues that could be managed with ease if they were occurring on a much smaller scale. But with a huge global population and inextricable connections between the issues, our old tools for ch ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published November 9th 2010 by Bloomsbury USA
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Oct 27, 2010 Bethany rated it it was amazing
Next Generation Democracy is an easy read on a complex topic. Jared combines his own personal experience as a millennial and consummate organizer with in-depth interviews and stories of leaders and organizations who are re-shaping how democracy works. Jared’s own commitment to the work is clearly driven by an environmental perspective, but he understands and communicates the challenge of a wide array of interconnected global problems. Jared is ultimately an optimist about the potential of millen ...more
Ben Babcock
Full disclosure: I won this book in a Goodreads First Reads Giveaway. Loves me the free books.

I won this book before the 18-day demonstration in Tahrir Square began, but the events in Egypt (and across the Middle East) were foremost in mind as I read this book. In high school, I learned about democracy in an incredibly idealized, abstract way. It is something born one or two centuries ago, something synonymous with freedom, involving voting and citizen participation. School does not always make
Feb 09, 2011 Alicia rated it liked it
Full of highly interesting anecdotes and case studies, but not cohesive enough to contain any unified or strong statement on the current plight of American politics and activism. Although Duval's passion, exhaustive activism and efforts for change are admirable, I was not convinced of a strong connection between open-source software and "open-source" activism or "open-source" democracy. Sure, there are some similarities between the open-source software movement and broader social or political mo ...more
Oct 23, 2010 Heather rated it really liked it
It is rare that I read nonfiction books that leave me thinking about the ways in which the author's assertions relate to my own experiences and frustrations. Next Generation Democracy is one of those books. While Duval clearly has complaints about the exclusive nature of our political system, he offers (what appears to be) an actual, feasible, evidence-based solution by highlighting the efforts of leaders currently attempting to effectively engage citizens in problem solving.

As someone who has
Feb 04, 2011 Brandon rated it it was amazing
There are a few once-in-a-lifetime questions that our generation is dealing with and I think are endlessly fascinating. One of them is how to merge technology and democracy. This book does a great job examining some of the more interesting developments in the last few years related to that question, as well as thinking creatively about where it could go from here. I look forward to pretending to my great grand-children in 50 years that I knew exactly how it would all play out.
Jan 31, 2011 Jennifer rated it really liked it
Shelves: political
Goodreads win! So far it is appealing to the journalist me!
Jared Duval addresses the significant impact my generation currently has on society and how we will affect the future. He proposes ideas on how to use the tools my generation (the millenial generation) is comfortable with to effect change in our political environment.
This book was fascinating as it cites numerous historical examples. He addresses the implication of open information and the need for Washington change. He wants to make
Jan 29, 2015 Amy rated it it was ok
In Next Generation Democracy, Duval makes a correlation between the open-source movement and the Millennial generations’ propensity for collaboration and grassroots advocacy – not a new idea by any means – and how these things are changing our expectations of government and policy.

The most interesting portions of the book deal with the history of the open source and free software movements and current actions being taken to make citizen communication with government more open and collaborative.
Apr 15, 2011 Jon rated it really liked it
This was a first reads book. Thank you Jared Duval. I thought this was a well-written book about changing our 21st century thinking and politics through mass collaboration. He used a number of examples in the private and public realm where this has happened and is currently happening. From America Speaks, Wikipedia, Open-software, and SeeClickFix to individuals leading this cause. Rather refreshing how he approached it as well as adding his own perspective I felt was well done. I cannot say that ...more
Oct 22, 2010 Elizabeth rated it really liked it
This book is a definite must read for anyone who cares about social change, next generation leadership, political transparency, etc. Clearly written, with passion and a great understanding of how power, politics and social change can happen, the book is a great insight into what the next generation of democracy can and should look like, and more importantly - how to gets us there. Duval uses specific examples throughout the book which are helpful to illustrate his key points. He also does a part ...more
Fredrick Danysh
Sep 09, 2013 Fredrick Danysh rated it liked it
This is a dissertation that projects the idea that the information highway [internet and social media] will provide a more open and transparent view of government using electronic data. The author cites the on-line encyclopedia Wikipedia as an example which ignoring the fact that anyone can post anything without verification. Another drawback is that government and groups can flood the system with propaganda until people accept false facts. The system is also at risk to hacking. Numerous web eng ...more
Dec 21, 2010 Gloria rated it liked it
Note: Quick skim.

Overall very readable.

What popped out to me the conditions for "wisdom of the crowds" [176] based on Surowiecki's work: "the group must represent a broad diversity in its thinking. Second, each participant should have a degree of independence from other group members. Neither of these conditions was truly present in the Open for Questions experiment [Obama's initial attempt at digital Town Meeting], even if the third—the ability to aggregate 'local opinions for all to see—was."

Jul 22, 2014 Mawgojzeta rated it it was amazing
This is a great read!

Mr. Duval does an excellent job of relaying what could be very dry information, using first hand accounts and other true stories as the basis and then building off of these.

Despite my conservative political ideology (Libertarian), I found his book to be very workable within the framework of right-leaning political views. He does comment on this briefly. And, I can say that my only complaint about the book is that he did not address that more fully.
Yasmin Fodil
Jan 05, 2011 Yasmin Fodil rated it it was amazing
Next Generation Democracy describes the innovative ways that we can use collective minds to solve wicked public problems. He does so using theories that are compelling, innovative, and proven as well as illustrating the work with rich stories about civic innovators and activists. I wrote a full review on my blog at the following URL:

Jan 31, 2011 Kelly rated it liked it
Shelves: firstreads
I give this First Reads book a 3.5. The stories related here are very inspiring and the books was very easy and enjoyable to read overall. Duval didn't make the mistake of promoting an over-reliance on the internet as a means of political action, but also focused on personal interaction with the community. However, Duval relied too heavily on the stories as inspiration and didn't make a strong enough call to action.
May 26, 2011 kltifft rated it really liked it
Shelves: giveaway-entries
I really enjoyed this book. I liked Mr. Duval's writing style, and his ideas were presented in a nice orderly fashion. He talked about an issue that is often seen as too "new" without seeming like he's trying to foist it on us- he's simply giving us the option. All in all, a very good book.
Feb 01, 2011 Jared added it  ·  (Review from the author)

While I'm not going to rate my own book, it would be wonderful if you would add it to your list, read it, and then rate and review it. For more, please see

Thanks and I hope you enjoy the read!
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