(identity cycle) (an exploration of identity)

Ian Grigg’s book Identity Cycle is an exploration of identity.

Its premise is that digital identity should be based on claims made within trusted communities rather than imposed top-down by the state. Ian cites savings groups like chamas commonly found in Kenya, as a model for a more appropriate definition of identity.

I wholeheartedly endorse the premise of this book. I think Ian has hit the mark in terms of what identity really means, especially in the majority of countries where institutional mechanisms are insufficient or non-existent. Even in those where there is better institutional support, it is woefully inadequate for the myriad purposes for which it is being (ab)used.

The book is freely downloadable for reading and sharing.

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I couldn’t help ask Claude what the Guild could put into practice from this book.

Here are 3 big ideas that an online community of entrepreneurs could take away:

  1. Focus on building trust within the community. The text emphasizes how essential trust is for sharing identity and enabling cooperation. An online community of entrepreneurs could foster trust by having members vouch for and validate each other, as well as building dispute resolution mechanisms like arbitration.
  2. Form smaller sub-communities. The text discusses the limitations of Dunbar’s number and the importance of small groups for developing deep relationships and trust. An online community could organize members into smaller sub-groups of 10-30 people united by common interests or identities to facilitate more meaningful connections.
  3. Align the community around a shared purpose. The text highlights how groups like chamas and cooperatives unite around a shared mission like saving money. Having a joint purpose helps build identity and trust. An entrepreneur community could rally around a common goal like collaborating, sharing knowledge, or providing mutual support.

Amazing how accurate this is to the Guild’s strategy!

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Guild’s desire of community relationship is similar with the article “Data Ethics, AI, and
Accompaniment: The Dangers of Depersonalization in Catholic Health Care,”
with some take away for entrepreneurs

  • The article examines how Catholic healthcare systems are using AI and data analytics to identify and provide care for “high-cost patients” (HCPs) - those who utilize a disproportionate amount of healthcare resources.
  • While these AI-driven programs seem to align with Catholic social teaching goals like care for the poor and vulnerable, the author argues they can also lead to problematic unintended consequences like depersonalization, surveillance, and pursuit of cost-efficiency over accompaniment.
  • The technocratic paradigm inherent in these AI systems emphasizes statistics, efficiency, and cost-containment in ways that can undermine the Catholic ethic of encounter and accompaniment. Patients become data points rather than persons known by name.
  • Ongoing evaluation of patients for cost-effectiveness and return on investment can cause practitioners to internalize institutional goals over service to the poor. Intensive tracking of HCPs also opens them to increased surveillance.
  • The author suggests alternative approaches like rebuilding community, accompaniment models not driven by cost-efficiency, and careful use of AI that does not disrupt healing relationships. The goals and effects on practitioners’ attitudes should be critically examined.

Any thought about this.