What is Collective Intelligence?
This site is about Collective Intelligence in its broad definition: how can smaller pieces form larger wholes that are as smart, wise, and capable as possible? This question has big implications in many areas of human affairs. Anywhere where people work together for the same goal or in the same system — be it a corporation, a family, a network, or a planet — collective intelligence becomes important.
Collective intelligence is everywhere in nature. Schools of fish, flocks of birds, ant colonies, fungi, and bacteria all employ methods of aggregating the experience and instincts of their members to direct collective action.
We are each individually a deeply puzzling and mysterious case of collective intelligence: our brains are composed of some 100 billion neurons (plus many more other cells), each with its own metabolism, skeleton, organs, and channels of input and output. Yet somehow, this vast social network gives rise to a subjectively unified consciousness that is enormously more intelligent and capable than any of its constituents. How this occurs is one of the greatest unsolved mysteries in science.
This site will delve into the topic of collective intelligence in all of these fascinating aspects. It will feature ideas, theories, and speculations, but more importantly it will pull together research and examples that point to how to make collective intelligence work in practical, on-the-ground ways.
Let’s get smarter, together.