The Post-Meritocracy Manifesto

Meritocracy is a founding principle of the open source movement, and the ideal of meritocracy is perpetuated throughout our field in the way people are recruited, hired, retained, promoted, and valued.

But meritocracy has consistently shown itself to mainly benefit those with privilege, to the exclusion of underrepresented people in technology. The idea of merit is in fact never clearly defined; rather, it seems to be a form of recognition, an acknowledgement that “this person is valuable insofar as they are like me.”

(If you are not familiar with criticisms of meritocracy, please refer to the resources on this page.)

It is time that we as an industry abandon the notion that merit is something that can be measured, can be pursued on equal terms by every individual, and can ever be distributed fairly.

What does a post-meritocracy world look like? It is founded on a core set of values and principles, an affirmation of belonging that applies to everyone who engages in the practice of software development.

Our Values

These core values and principles are:


To add your name to the list of signatories, sign this form.