We empower people to solve the world's hardest problems

Tackling issues like climate change, using a breakthrough in the evolution of democracy

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How do we do it?

By supporting local governments and other organizations to make great collective decisions that empower people and build consensus.

Our approach

We provide a hybrid suite of consulting and digital solutions. We focus on five areas: policy, budgeting, planning, major projects, and conflict resolution.

Our Story

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Ethelo is the ancient Greek word for “intention.” When Founder and CEO, John Richardson established the company called Ethelo in 2011, his intention was to use information technology to help groups collectively make the best decisions, so they can realize their intention together.

He was joined by a talented, visionary team who shared the belief that evolving democracy to empower people to make smart, fair decisions together was the key to solving many of the world’s most challenging problems.

Growing with a purpose

From its origins in 2011 as a theoretical algorithm for consensus-based decisions for groups, Ethelo has grown into a full-service technology company that has done pioneering community engagement work in the local government and climate spaces.

The past decade has been an exciting ride that just keeps getting better. In 2021, we were honoured to receive back-to-back awards for being the world’s leading digital democracy platform and becoming a Best For The World B Corp.

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Making change happen, one community at a time

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An Award-Winning Platform

Ranked #1 Digital Democracy Platform by the UK Solonian Institute

Best for the World

In 2021 and 2022 we were honoured to be named "The Best for the World" in Governance by B Corp. This means we were among the top 5 percent worldwide B Corps in the area of community based decision-making and governance.

In 2022, Ethelo won the Digital Democracy Innovation award from the Solonian Institute, and in 2024, we were named World #2 ranked Digital Democracy platform - the 4th year in a row Ethelo was ranked #1 or #2 globally!

We are pround that the Ethelo platform and our work empowering communities to govern themselves democratically and equitably has been recognized in this way. We are dedicated to continuing to lead in this area.

Our Values

Blended Impact

We are using a business strategy to achieve a social impact, building a market for digital democracy while improving and scaling public participation.

Diversity Makes us Stronger

We are building a feminist, anti-racist, LGBTQ-friendly workplace that empowers people with disabilities.

Evolving Democracy

We are dedicated to pushing the envelope on ways digital technology and values of fairness, transparency, and collective analysis can improve the results of public and private decisions.

Decentralized Workplace

We’ve worked remotely since 2017 and are proudly a 100% remote company and culture. We provide a distributed, flexible workplace with staff who work across 9 time zones.

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Learn about eDemocracy Network
eDemocracy Network is Ethelo’s non-profit sister organization which helps community members achieve fair, accessible and engaging public consultation processes that prioritize ensuring all voices are heard.
eDemocracy Network is focused on climate solutions, anti-racism and diversity, equity and inclusion.