What is the Open Action ?

Our modern societies face new challenges.

In two years, Europe has experienced two major crises. The COVID 19 epidemic and the outbreak of the conflict in Ukraine have put our solidarity systems to the test. These events are taking place in a context of profound upheaval in democratic practices and the emergence of new causes, particularly environmental ones.

Crises overlap, making centralized action difficult or even impossible. We believe that the most effective way to address these crises is therefore citizen collectives.

Citizen collectives are groups of citizens who have a shared motivation in addressing a specific issue. They differ from usual organizations by having no official structure and by being often spontaneous.

Examples of such collectives could be En Première Ligne, a support network against the pandemic, or soutienukraine.fr, a portal aggregating ways to help Ukraine from the EU. Both were launched in a few hours by groups of commited citizens who wanted to act. You can learn more about these two projects in the slides of the launch of the initiative.

Citizen collectives are extremely effective at tackling crises because :

  1. they have no blocking administrative constraints (no structure or inertia) ;
  2. they can infinitely scale (it's always possible to add someone to the collective) ;

  3. they are very flexible (they can adapt quickly to any crisis because they have no pre-existing structure) ;

However, launching successful citizen collectives depend on the ability to integrate modern mobilization and communication methods from the onset. Technology is needed to structure volunteer engagement and communicate about the project at large scales. This greatly limits who can launch such collectives, and thus who can act during a crisis.

This is where the Open Action Project can help.

We believe that by creating a public, open-source and free infrastructure for citizen collectives, we would give the ability to much more people around the world to act during crises, which would ultimately make society more resilient to extreme changes in the future. That is our goal.