7. Work and Service

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7. Work and Service


Working group on Global Systems Accounting
Social Accounting

Every human being has a capacity to contribute to the wealth and well-being of society, so we need accounts to measure how we use this capacity for work and service, whether in paid employment or in other contributions to society, with all barriers, from unemployment to discrimination as forms of work debt depriving society of potential wealth.

Facilitator: Nabil Elias
Working group members: Philippe Gerling, Alex Boysen, Tineke Vernhout, and W. Gijs van de Fliert


short description

Link to the section of the background paper


Ideal state

A neighborhood, village or cluster, where the well-being of all is more easily ascertained. The ideal state is where all have a role to play in the daily chores needed to sustain the community’s well-being, irrespective if this contribution earns a salary thru a formal labor contract.

Ideal – Everyone does something that is beneficial to the other member(s) of society and perform their work with a service mindset

Dynamics of the community, there is ongoing capacity building in qualities and skills. Building trade skills. Mix it with creativity creating a balanced advancement in well-being

Vivid communication. Dynamic of community much will advance requiring ongoing reflections and consultations.

Example of native village in South America, the whole village would reflect and consult every evening for say 45 minutes

Non-financial currency

Perhaps a non-financial indicator might be a measurement of idleness of a person, or lack of contribution/service to the greater good of the community. Idleness would be a negative indicator.


Positive indicators

There is a rhythm and harmony on the daily life in the community. All are engaged in either physical, mental, and artistic endeavors. Some work through formal labor contracts, while others husband the land to gain sustenance, and provide care for the young and elderly. Education and training for all. Ongoing capacity building for all.

Generosity, reciprocity and collaboration, longing to serve and unite

Gender and racial equalities are all accommodated; optimizing the diversity of temperaments and talents. Or elimination of all prejudices

Level of recognition of nobility of everyone and inclusion in the community without regard to where they came from.

Accessibility rather than formal ranks and positions in society. Experience of human thought

Feeling safe, content and supported. Ongoing communication sensitive to the needs of the community

Negative indicators

Insensitive rule-based top-down regulations that do not afford the flexibility of work needed to fulfill one's obligations to family and community, while also advancing one’s own opportunities.

Dissension and Strife, Contention, Estrangement and Apathy, Prejudice hatred war and conflict. Struggle for material things

Lack of a proper education has deprived him of that which he inherently possesses

Individual: ego, uncaring overlooking needs of others/community
Community: lack of inclusivity, people left behind
Institutions: selfish after its own gain only; lack of service to the community

Current state of the art



Bregman, Rutger. 2020. Humankind: A Hopeful History.

Reusche, Gary. 2005. "Reinventing the Village", in Paul Hanley (ed.), The Spirit of Agriculture, George Ronald Baha’i Studies

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Last updated 30 April 2022