In What Would Google Do Jeff Jarvis discusses how Google and other similar businesses help people organise with each other without the help of governments, companies or... organisations.
Steve Johnson has discussed how self-organisation works in Emergence. As he makes clear, self-organisation isn't new. To paraphrase Cole Porter, ants do it, our DNA does it even cities do it, let's do it, let's self-organise!
Okay, it doesn't quite have the same ring as a Cole Porter lyric but you get the point.
A good example is language. No one created language or languages. There was no committee set up to review how we should communicate and no recommendations to move language forward. Yet without sustainable targets and a language Tsar, human beings managed to develop language and languages.
Organises ourselves, working together to achieve something and doing it voluntarily comes naturally. This is how open markets work.
In the 1970s, Alvin Toffler predicted significant technological change that would mean that people could take their self-organising instincts to new heights. A lot of what he talks about in his books has already come about. If he is right in all his predictions, there is more to come.
There are many campaigners who yearn for a society where people run their own lives. Getting there tends to focus on political engagement or politically disengagement. The reality is that politics may play a very small part. If people can control their lives, organise their relationships and business activity by using the available technology, we may see emerge a very different world to the one we currently live in.