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Peer Production and Co-Production: A New Approach to Solving Common Problems Together

Aalto University in Finland has a new publication: Towards Peer Production in Public Services: Cases from Finland available for free download. The book's description reads: "There are many challenges and opportunities in designing, developing and maintaining services for participatory modes of governance, not to mention their co-creation and peer-to-peer aspects. We ask what can be learned from the current research, and what is happening already beyond academia? With the aim to increase the opportunities for dialogue between the Finnish scene and the international context, we have gathered this collection of articles that deal broadly with the relationships between peer-to-peer dynamics, and public services. Most of the cases presented are illustrative of recent developments and discussions in Finnish society, however, also included are broader international perspectives, giving historical reflection and future-oriented speculation on how peer production might affect the structures of our society."

They're also staging a Facebook Book Release party to celebrate the book's release. 


The book is a triumphant example of peer production or co-production, which Coprodnet describes as "a viable approach to delivering cheaper and more effective services by re-drawing the lines between service provider and service user, creating reciprocal and beneficial relationships that harness the resources of individuals, families and communities." At the organization's first Co-Production Conference, David Boyle proclaimed, "Co-production means delivering public services in an equal and reciprocal relationship between professionals, people using services, their families and their neighbours. Where activities are co-produced in this way, both services and neighbourhoods become far more effective agents of change.” 

The book is freely available, under a Peer Production License, an example of the Copyfarleft type of license. You can use and re-use the material, but any entity that uses the material for profit must do so after establishing explicit reciprocity. In other words, commercial users (publishers, broadcasters, e.g.) are not prohibited by this license.

 

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