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Next Generation Democracy: What the Open-Source Revolution Means for Power, Politics, and Change Paperback – Bargain Price, November 9, 2010

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Editorial Reviews


“Jared Duval has written an inspiring and necessary book, a message that real democracy, and real change, is more possible now than ever. An energetic leader and a fearless thinker, Duval shows us that we have the tools for change at our fingertips. Now it’s time to stand up, stop complaining, and make the world we want.”—Van Jones, author of The Green Collar Economy

“God knows previous generations have left those that are coming of age a world of trouble. Happily, they’re figuring out a world of ways to set them right. Jared Duval’s book offers a behind-the-scenes tour of the next wave of activism, organizing, inspiration, and change. It will give you cause to hope—and cause to go to work.”—Bill McKibben, author of Eaarth and Deep Economy

“We’re seeing a wave of greatly increased civic engagement as people find ways to improve governance via the Internet. Next Generation Democracy tells you what the deal is about the rising millennial generation and our new tools for real democracy.”—Craig Newmark, founder of Craigslist

"Some writers are known for telling uplifting stories, others for making compelling arguments. Jared Duval is the rare author who does both. What's more, Duval, grounded by his own experience creating social change, is uniquely able to help us understand how to responsibly and effectively engage in the world." —Judith Freeman, Co-Founder and Executive Director, New Organizing Institute

“Next Generation Democracy is an insightful intellectual tour de force linking the emergence of the Millennial Generation and the power of open source systems to describe a hopeful future for American democracy. In the middle of a cacophony of confused and fearful voices, Jared Duval presents a lucid, calm argument.” —Morley Winograd, Co-author of Millennial Makeover

“Jared Duval has proven himself one of the greatest leaders and thinkers of the Millennial Generation. Next Generation Democracy is a bold, visionary, and empowering exploration of the social and political progress we need in the 21st century. This is the kind of rethinking that happens once a generation – don’t miss it.” —Teryn Norris, Founding Director, Breakthrough Generation.

About the Author

Jared Duval is a Fellow at Demos, a New York based think tank where he is helping to build a first-of-its-kind fellowship program for young authors. He was the National Director of the Sierra Student Coalition, the national student chapter of the Sierra Club and the largest student environmental organization in America. A recipient of the David Brower Youth Award and the Morris K. Udall and Harry S. Truman scholarships, he graduated Summa Cum Laude from Wheaton College in Massachusetts in 2005. A Trustee of the Orton Family Foundation, Jared is a tenth-generation Vermonter. He currently lives in New Haven, Connecticut.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury USA (November 9, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1608190668
  • ASIN: B0058M5QAO
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,611,831 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Scott D. Hopkins on January 12, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have to say I wasn't sure what to expect from this book. The book description admits that the "challenges of the twenty-first century are of an unprecedented scale", and lists climate change, financial instability, the housing crisis, and the need for health care as just a few of these challenges. The next paragraph then tells us that there is good news: "We can use our vast size and complexity to our advantage", and that, "[The author] Duval describes a new approach to solving complex problems that draws on the contributions of vast and diverse communities of engaged citizens."

As someone who has a tenuous grasp of what young "social change leaders" like Duval do, and as someone who believes our "vast size and complexity" have made getting anything major done in this country next to impossible, I figured the book would contain fanciful ideas at best. After reading the book I now admit I was utterly wrong. The book is an enjoyable read - part history lesson, part case study, and part call-to-arms.

Duval early on lays out his thesis - that our global challenges can and should be addressed using open source techniques and technology - and he fully admits that there is no silver bullet to solving these challenges. To bolster his thesis he uses a perfect mixture of his own personal experiences; stories of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina; polling data; interviews; and historical research, which includes brief but enjoyable histories of the organization SeeClickFix and the forward-thinking community of New Haven, CT. The small book contains a deceptively impressive amount of well-researched and well-written data.

The strength of the book lies in this writing, and Duval's ability to bring everything together to continually support his thesis.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Benn Pamphleteer on December 6, 2010
Format: Paperback
Think Obama has betrayed his appeal for change and hope?
Think the Republicans are being obstructionist?
Think the solution is the next "wave" to sweep Washington?
Read this book.
Jared Duval eloquently and incisively lays out a case for (and the urgency of) revising our broken political system. The dark truth we all secretly acknowledge is that our voice is not being heard. And by our voice I mean Our Voice, the voice of all segments of society, comfortable and poor, involved and disengaged, silent and belligerent, including the one(s) who might have a solution to our most pressing problems. He reviews the technological, scientific, and demographic tools evolving today that might change this. As he points out in the afterword, most of these developments are not new, but he does an excellent job of describing the potential and the cautions in reforming our inept political system. Some of it makes me a little queasy, since I'm generally skeptical of Vox Populi, but his version makes a great deal of sense. And as he points out, democracy is never finished; it will always need improving. Here's a thorough discussion of a good next step.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Definitely a 5 star read -- on the level of books that prophetically speak of tectonic social change to come.

Jared Duval is an exceptionally articulate and eloquent voice of his millennial generation. He clearly understands the realities of climate change but also makes a solid case that because the spectrum off global challenges we face today are so interconnected, old school thinking and conventional tools will be incapable of meeting the challenges ahead. He's speaks from firsthand experience of the new innovative models and rapidly evolving technologies being used today to successfully generate large scale social solutions.

This book is informed by a detailed perspective of the convergence of modern social change and leading edge open source principles, but it is also grounded in Duval's deep understanding and obvious veneration for the foundations of traditional democracy.

Duval expresses a clear vision both of what's wrong with our current expressions of the democratic process and of the exciting opportunities that a next generation democracy holds for meeting the large-scale interconnected global challenges surrounding us today.

After reading this book I came away with a much clearer picture of how we as a people can and must work together to advance true solutions. Duval also reconfirmed my belief that any effort to meet today's challenges that hopes to succeed must be fully participative--especially including the teens, twenty and thirty year-olds who's innate world view makes them uniquely equipped to understand, envision and deliver the global solutions we so desperately need today.
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