Collaborative budgeting experiment

Hi everyone - I came to the first CoTech retreat in November 2016.

I am part of Enspiral and a cofounder of Greaterthan - we’re building and running Cobudget. We’re super excited that you’re going to be kicking off some Cobudgeting within the CoTech network.

I’m reaching out about something slightly different right now though and please don’t hesitate to let me know if this is inappropriate for this channel. I’m wondering if anyone can help with an experiment we’re currently running around collaborative finance.

We’re exploring how to make financial management & budgeting in organizations more collaborative and transparent, through what we call “collaborative financial tools & practices” - Cobudget is one of these. As part of this experiment we have listed a number of hypotheses and we are interviewing a number of organizations. These interviews help us to confirm or discard these hypotheses.

We’re interested in finding groups that feature the qualities below (cooperatives are currently our key use case but there are other business types that have similar qualities). We want to interview someone from these organisations for 30mins.

If you know of groups outside the CoTech network who have these qualities (I know I know - the categorisations are broad) we’d be super keen to chat to them too.

Please let me know if you can connect me with someone and comments and discussions on the experiment welcome.

Qualities of groups we’re targeting for the experiment
Some form of membership
Want to be more participatory / self managing-ish (green to teal)
Size: 15 - 150 members
They have money
There is some form of regular meeting (on or offline) where members meet

Nice to have:
Membership fee
Spending surplus or dividends

Business cooperatives (not buyers coops, or consumer coops)
Common purpose networks
Business networks
Partnerships - consultancies, firms,
Co-working spaces

I guess we fit into this category (not sure what ‘green to teal’ means?)

We’re a multi-stakeholder co-op.

Can I ask what the questionnaire consists of before committing to help?

Hi Jonathan,

The questions will be around financial processes of your coop (i.e. budgeting, spending of discretionary budgets, dividends) relating to transparency and collaboration.

If this sounds ok I would have a 30 minute video call with you to discuss. My email is - can you email me and I’ll try arrange a time for the call?

Many thanks for responding.

No problem - but what do we use for video calls? (Never done that)



@jonathan as you are aware none of the computers in our office have cameras or microphones and are also probably not fast enough to play videos on… you can use my mobile phone for this if you wish.

Thanks for posting @Katebeecroft - I know @matt and @joaquimds made a standalone version from the sourcecode so it would be interesting to see what they wanted to change.

Maybe we could do some hacks where we try out new features on our version and then contribute successful features back to the main project?

@chris @jonathan - if you’re looking for cheap computers for the office we’ve found reconditioned workstations pretty good for the sort of work we do e.g.

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I know some hackspaces like The londonhackspace ser something like this, unsure of The details.