“How can people and computers connect and act together, more intelligently, than any individual, group or computer has ever done before?” asked Thomas W. Malone, Director of the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence in 2006.
In a time when humans face the most drastic of challenges ever, Malone’s question becomes even more critical.
Can existing problem-solving intelligence, knowledge and experience be integrated at a global level with the aid of an IT-supported project in order to create a sustainable model taking the climate change into account and allocates the remaining resources to secure our future coexistence?
In order to develop such a sustainable plan or a conceivable realistic economic and social model for the future, the creative and productive cooperation of many across our world is required. The current state of digital communication, simulation and computing technology offers excellent conditions for this to exist as a global joint project.
The answer therefore is: yes, it can be done – through a ‘game’! An interactive planning and simulation game based on MMORPG. The game should, in a playful way, inspire and motivate the players to develop a new kind of economic and social system – one that is free of domination, is democratic and oriented towards the common good.
Digital technology is also important for this project in other respects. What, according to economic theory, can only be achieved with money in order to organize the overall economic processes and to guarantee supply, can also be achieved without this ‘resource’ according to the ideas of Global Alternative. For in this virtual new economy; demand, production and the distribution of goods, as well as the social tasks that are necessary for such a global society, can presently be recorded, analysed and communicated using today’s data processing.
Global Alternative thus presents an economic system that is on the one hand novel, yet on the other hand obvious. It contrasts the complexity of our world today with a relatively simple order. The twelve rules of the game are enough to trigger the creation of this new society. To shape it, develop it, examine it, make it conceivable, and finally, to bring momentum and fun into it by doing things collaboratively – these are the challenges the players face within the game.
If Global Alternative can be developed and realized, this would possibly exist as one of the first truly global social projects and would mark the beginning of a new era of computer games that would contribute to solving real world problems.