Commons Survey

You can use the canvas approach to survey commons initiatives, create overviews and draw comparisons to gain more knowledge of how the commons can work. The Table below shows a first draft of the kind of data and information that can be collected for each of the blocks. Do suggest more using the comments section below. Continue reading “Commons Survey”


As you go through the canvas it is good to review your progress and test your ideas.

After each block.

  • Use the check-list we provide  for each block of the canvas.
  • Park anything you are unsure of on a separate questions sheet or whiteboard.

After the first round.

When you have completed all eleven panes you might want to use Elinor Oströms principles to check your design. Check that what you have come up with aligns to her principles.

8 Principles for Managing a Commons

1. Define clear group boundaries.
2. Match rules governing use of common goods to local needs and conditions.
3. Ensure that those affected by the rules can participate in modifying the rules.
4. Make sure the rule-making rights of community members are respected by outside authorities.
5. Develop a system, carried out by community members, for monitoring members’ behavior.
6. Use graduated sanctions for rule violators.
7. Provide accessible, low-cost means for dispute resolution.
8. Build responsibility for governing the common resource in nested tiers from the lowest level up to the entire interconnected system.