Who Is A Global Citizen?


The opportunity: more people from distant places are starting to show up on our doorstep and express an interest in joining our community as Global Citizens.

The challenge: Help! As more and more people find us and want to get involved, how are we going to decide whom to designate as a Global Citizen?


I offer the following draft document as a starting point.  Global Citizens, Working Founders and Guiding Founders please offer your comments & suggestions. Thank you!

Global Citizen Application – 1st Draft


Supporting each other in accelerating humanity’s course change
 toward a healthy, just, peaceful, sustainable world.


  1. We are leading positive change in our own communities and/or with our favorite causes — change that also contributes to our shared vision of a healthy, just, peaceful, sustainable world — one world for all of us.
  2. Regardless of our differences, our actions are guided by a common set of values. (See oneworldlights.net/values.html)
  3. We each set aside a little time on a regular basis to support other Global Citizens in our community. We do this by either (1) participating in Wisdom Circles in our local communities; or (2) globally over the Internet by making ourselves available to interact with other Global Citizens through blogs, social media, Skype calls, email, etc. — or both.
  4. We regard everyone in our global community – regardless of country, background, affiliation, views, etc. – as a potential teacher that we can learn from. Where opinions differ, we withhold judgement and seek to understand.
  5. We each share responsibility for maintaining One World Lights as a safe, healthy, productive commons for all of us.

New Global Citizen Questionnaire

Your name, address, email address:

  1. Your profession(s)/job(s) – paid or unpaid. Please feel free to explain and help us understand what you do.
  2. What are you doing to lead positive change in your own community and/or cause?
  3. Why do you want to affiliate as a Global Citizen with One World Lights? What are the greatest gifts you bring to our shared purpose of supporting your fellow Global Citizens? What do you most hope to receive?
  4. To what extent do you see your life and your actions as congruent with our shared values, and where are the  greatest differences? Please feel free to explain and share your personal views.
  5. How much time do you estimate you’ll commit each month to communicate with & support your fellow Global Citizens? Would your preference be to do this through a local Wisdom Circle, or via our web site or elsewhere on the Internet, or both? If on the Internet, how?
  6. What are the possible situations where you think our 4th Requirement could pose the biggest challenges for you. Why? If these challenges come up, how will you deal with them?

Optional: is there anything else you’d like us to tell us about yourself?

10 thoughts on “Who Is A Global Citizen?

  1. Even before I read the questions in your questionnaire I thought the process should be somewhat like a college application (though easier) and I think your questionnaire accomplishes that. Think responses should determine who gets to be a Global Citizen.

    I’d do one other thing: I’d make this process ‘transparent’ to all who contact you by telling those who apply why you even want the questionnaire in the first place and how you will use it. So I’d say something like you did above about concerns around making the process “too easy or too difficult.” Ultimately the purpose is to take people into this category who “could really be contributing” and that’s what you are looking for.

  2. I have been thinking about whether the proposed questions in the “college application” model, are at their heart, consistent with the OWL values.

    Perhaps we might simply ask those who propose to be Global Citizens to communicate to us in their own way if and how their values are congruent with the four OWL values:

    * We embrace the goodness in all peoples, all cultures, and all life on our planet.
    * We celebrate our differences, and honor our underlying oneness.
    * We share responsibility for each others’ well-being, and the well-being of all life on this planet.
    * We are committed to action, each in our own way, locally to serve in our own communities and our own causes, and globally to transform the world.

    As far as the next step, I would suggest a proposal review team read all proposals, and if any one wishes to bring a proposal forward, the whole group of Working Founders considers it.

        1. Thank you for your thoughts, which help me clarify my own.

          My reason for wanting specific questions is that I’m looking for specificity, clarity and transparency about what’s required to be a Global Citizen, and who meets those requirements. As a metaphor, it’s like the values are the corporate values, and the questions address the job requirements.

          It’s looking like you, Larry and I are all envisioning a transparent process with, as you say it, a “review team.”

    1. Steve, beautifully proposed. College application? I don’t know.
      How creative can we be? Is the creative process something we value as we grow our inclusion process? Of course aligned with OWL’s values. And yes, a proposal review team..

  3. For me, it is much easier and quicker to have a set of questions to focus on instead of an open essay. I do have my doubts about question #6 up front. I think it would be helpful to have it in our back pockets to use if we get a sense that the person who wants to be a global citizen really doesn’t have a global perspective and who might have difficulty supporting others in the community.

  4. I suspect it depends on what being a Global Citizen means to the person identifying with the core values you articulate as well as what it means to building your network.

    I don’t think it makes sense to “qualify” people as in a college application, because there is no college to go to after acceptance. Nor is it an elite designation nor is it a “club” membership, i.e. discounts on movie tickets or free access to airport club rooms.

    What it is is an identification with an aspirational intent. Therefore defining the aspiration is critical, less so the behavioral expectations. A person can be identified as part of a Global Citizen network if they signal agreement with the aspirational statement that is similar to what you have drafted – without the behavioral expectations.

    However, the one criteria that might be worth considering beyond identifying with the aspirational intent is participation in a wisdom circle.

    1. Thanks Alan. I can see your logic. If we’re not offering “college,” then what’s the point of a “college application?”

      My view has been that we are in fact offering a college of sorts, and are offering something of value — membership in a global community of Global Citizens committed to support each other — through Wisdom Circles and online. Not a degree or a discount on movie tickets, but doesn’t that support have value? That’s the whole premise. And the specific people to whom we want to offer it are those who are leading positive change to make the world better.

      So if you’re signing up as a Global Citizen to receive value, then we’re asking you to be prepared to contribute your share in the same currency.

      Is there something in this that I’m missing, or not seeing? If so, I’m open.

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