The RSA is an Enlightenment institution, but progressing the Enlightenment today does not mean perpetuating the beliefs of the past. A modern enlightened approach requires a richer understanding of the human mind and an appreciation of the new values of our digitally-enabled age: an enthusiasm for collective action, a more participatory view of membership and a fundamental belief that people are inherently good and should be trusted.
The RSA has worked hard to embrace these values through the RSA Networks project, on which I was a consultant and volunteer. However the level of culture shift is great and the support of an engaged fellowship is essential. In standing for Council I intend to represent the energies of a young, digitally-savvy, ethically aware generation that is already reshaping the world in its own image.
I bring to this all my experience as a reformer and innovator in education, democracy and mental health. I am Founder of the Mindapples ’5-a-day for your mind’ campaign, recently featured in the RSA Journal, and a Co-founder and Company Director of the innovative education start-up School of Everything, which won both a New Statesman Award and a Prime Minister’s Catalyst Award in 2008.
I am also co-author of a forthcoming NESTA handbook on the use of social technology for social impact, a fellow of the School for Social Entrepreneurs, a long-standing volunteer at Social Innovation Camp and a pioneer of new models of social enterprise, digital campaigning and democratic participation.
All my voluntary and commercial activities are directed towards building a fairer, healthier and more sustainable world. I challenge old structures and assumptions, not through opposition but by building more compelling alternatives. I hope that with my support the RSA can lead the charge and help us build the society we all want to live in.
I hope you will endorse my candidacy, or disagree with my ideas, by leaving me a comment below. If you’re an RSA Fellow, I hope I can also count on your vote next month. (I’ve always wanted to say that.)