THE ICELANDIC WAY

After the 2008 financial crisis put an end to Iceland’s banking system and previous government, the country’s original constitution – created in 1944 – was deemed antiquated.

The country named 25 citizens as a Constitutional Council and were asked to help create the new governing document.

Through mass mobilization, the people toppled the government and instituted a radically new form of political participation, crowdsourcing.

The council took to the Internet to raise ideas and provisions from the public.

A first draft was made available online in April 2011 and citizens could comment through a Facebook page.

The council also remained open about decision-making posting status updates to Twitter and videos on YouTube.

In just three years, Iceland went from collapse to revolution and back to growth.

Instead of socialising the losses of the banks, making ordinary people pay for a crisis they never caused, the Icelandic model forced the bankers to pay for their own stupidity.

During the Icelandic crisis, all three of the country’s largest banks collapsed.

The government didn’t save them.

Key figures in the banking sector have been arrested and a former prime minister has been formally charged.

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