Reimagining Work and Community: Unveiling the Cabin Lifestyle and Polycentric Governance

The Defiant


Today we're joined by the driving force behind a venture that has redefined the concept of modern travel and community: Jon Hillis, the founder of Cabin, a network city for remote workers in nature, who is actively working to grow a global network of neighborhoods for people interested in community-centric living and working.

Cabin exists today and they have many different locations around the world. Cabin is a great example of merging the digital with the physical and using Web 3 tools in real life.

We delve into the purpose behind Cabin, how the COVID lockdowns inspired and allowed room for a Cabin to emerge, the shift in the remote work mindset, the different governance structures that exist within the DAO ecosystem, why Cabin chose polycentric governance, the best DAO practices, how you can get involved in Cabin communities and so much more.

But first, Jon will introduce us to Cabin.

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🎙️Listen to the interview

7 Key Takeaways

  1. Cabin is a co-living in nature, a network city. A global net of beautiful properties for remote workers seeking meaningful connections in Internet native cities. Cities that like the internet, are not in one place but decentralized into different hubs with shared culture, economies, and governance structures.
  2. Solar Punk is a vibe, a literary and artistic movement. It envisions positive futures where humanity solves problems like Climate change, biodiversity loss, and loneliness, by living in communities interconnecting nature and people. Small groups of people, building societies both high-tech and high-nature at the same time, can turn the tide on the big problems facing the world.
  3. Cabin practices local governance around duocracy. If you want something changed, as long as it's reversible you should do it. The most important governance questions to start with are questions like, How are we collectively doing the dishes? Then grow bottom-up governance systems from there.
  4. Polycentric governance means governance built around many centers of power, instead of one leader, leader-full organizations, lots of different local autonomous pods with their ways of doing things, and their own leadership structures. All loosely collated together into large organizations. These emergent governance systems tend to be more resilient and successful in the long run.
  5. The Cabin's three guiding principles: Community: We're our best selves, we live with people we admire, find our people online, and gather in person. Nature: We believe touching grass is good for well-being and building regenerative local communities is the best way to create resilient stores of value. Co-Creation: Our third guiding principle is around creating together, we believe that creating means doing, and that co-creation grows culture.
  6. DAO tips: You don't want to over-constrain and lock into something too soon. Evolve into the right governance structures for your organization and align around providing intrinsic motivation and rewards for people that allow them to play long-term infinite games with each other and build a deep community.
  7. Cabin’s community today has 821 members in the census. 692 token holders and 152 of those people have become Cabin Citizens.


  • 00:00 Introduction
  • 01:14 What is Cabin? Mission and Purpose
  • 04:44 Background and Creating Cabin
  • 06:45 What is the Solar Punk Community?
  • 10:20 Cabin the DAO
  • 17:44 The Polycentric Governance
  • 31:30 Remote Work Paradigm Shift
  • 44:14 Cabin vs Airbnb
  • 49:50 Taxes, Security and Citizenship
  • 53:56 How are You Defiant?


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