Metrics for Humanity

There is one project we are all working on together: The humanity project.

Projects work better with updates that are inspiring, regular and actionable.

We are missing a publication that delivers on those three criteria for humanity and I would like to see that change.

My motivation to work on this

I would like to see a publication that delivers messages that inspire people to think and act on the things that matter most. A publication that inspires focus on the depth and true potential of our impact on the world and on other people. Current offerings are not achieving this:

  • Current news skews towards events and sensationalism. Novelty, fear and anger are addictive.
  • Reports showing global data are updated rarely and may be tools of a political agenda. Thorough reports don’t form part of the mainstream information cycle.
  • Both news and reports rarely link to tangible next actions. This results in people focusing on isolated incidences of what’s wrong, rather than motivating people towards solutions.

Project overview

Specifically, meaningful updates on the state of humanity would be:

  • Balanced between democratic and expert guidance:
    • the metrics should be based on merit as determined by recognized experts and communal vote.
  • Simple and brief:
    • I propose five high level metrics, delivered over a single page of text or 2 minutes of video.
  • Regular:
    • I propose weekly.
  • Actionable:
    • It should be possible to drill down into the data via web/app to find items of impact that an individual could work on.
  • Compelling and Inspiring
    • Perhaps the most important piece. The update needs to be something that a wide audience will engage with regularly and spread to those around them. I propose learning from and developing techniques that drive interest in mainstream news and social media.

My biases

The metrics I personally think most about are the following (and their opposites):

  • Control: Our capacity to impact or change things in the world.
  • Empathy: Our ability to understand, and appreciate other people.
  • Being: Our sense of purpose in the world, our sense of presence in the moment.
  • Survival: Keeping as much of humanity as we can around, long term.
  • Discovery: The rate at which humanity uncovers unknown unknowns.

Next steps

I’m meeting with people who have shown interest and leadership in working on this problem. I’m eager for your input: ben@ this domain.

Thanks to Santiago Siri and Dave Wilcox for reading drafts of this.