Virtuous Cycles

Altering any factor in a complex system can cause an amplified reaction in other systems (e.g. changing the education system in one country can impact the world economy). This reaction can be negative (vicious) or positive (virtuous). The dynamics of connected and entangled global networks means that emerging technical practices have the potential to introduce powerful virtuous cycles of digital inclusion.

Virtuous cycles of inclusion are triggered by insisting on diverse participation from the start. When diverse needs are met, individuals have greater access to participation (e.g. in a design process) and can thus communicate their diverse demands. This pushes so-called “outlier” solutions into the mainstream, making inclusively designed solutions more affordable. This in turn increases individual spending power and prosperity, further increasing access to participation.

Diagram showing the virtuous cycles as a result of digital inclusion.

Figure 1: The virtuous cycles triggered by digital inclusion