Solidarity and common good

As social beings, we are defined by our interactions with others through our social, spiritual, political, and other relations. Solidarity underpins these relations from local communities to nation states and ultimately, humanity as a whole.

Solidarity takes on a new form and relevance in our relations with others on social media platforms, online games, VR, and other online mediated platforms. Empathy and emotions are nurtured in different ways in terms of both form and depth. We are experiencing an unprecedented rupture to the traditional – physically driven – social and emotional bonding that humans have developed since time immemorial. It remains to be seen if future generations will develop new types of online or hybrid social bonding and solidarity or whether they will return to traditional forms of physical encounters in families, local communities, and working spaces. The ways we engage with others and develop emotional and social links will shape the social fabric of tomorrow with far-reaching consequences for family life, law, and other aspects of society.

Common goods are tangible aspects of solidarity in society. Digital common goods (digital commons) have been in focus in discussions around software, data, and AI. The open source movement places common goods at its foundation. Currently, there are discussions and initiatives to consider data and AI as common goods that could be used to achieve sustainable development, reduce inequalities, and advance social peace.