idealist resilience

Idealist Resilience allows teams to gain a deeper understanding of their core (idealistic) goal, the values on which they build their project, and to lay out a strategy to adapt the project for future challenges such as internal flaws and assimilation and attacks by external parties. I developed this design tool during the NGI Ledger project to mentor teams who started out with the intention to ‘do good’ and who dread later on that they are compromising on their ideals because of internal and external forces.


This is a condensed version of the exercise. First, we establish and ideological groundwork:

1. Core goal: What exactly is it that you want to achieve, what systemic change do you ideally want to bring about?
2. Values: How does this goal translate to concrete values which you can incorporate in you product and process?

With this basis, the product can be adapted to withstand different challenges without it comprominsing on its essential idealism. We can identify such challenges as:

3. Inner Flaws: How would your project affect a user without many privileges? How could your project harm marginalized communities?
4. Assimilation: How would someone - who embodies everything that you oppose - render your project harmless, by co-opting it?
5. Blatant attacks: If assimilation fails, how would you destroy your projects through legal measures, propaganda and more?