"Seasteading” (sea + homesteading) consists of establishing a permanent home (or “seastead") on the sea, outside of a nation’s territory. The idea has appealed to libertarians, who established The Seasteading Institute in 2008.
“Seasteading” has been cited in print since at least 1969, but became popular in the 2010s. Someone who lives in a seastead is a “seasteader.”
Seasteading is the concept of creating permanent dwellings at sea, called seasteads, outside the territory claimed by the government of any standing nation. Most proposed seasteads have been modified cruising vessels. Other proposed structures have included a refitted oil platform, a decommissioned anti-aircraft platform, and custom-built floating islands. No one has created a state on the high seas that has been recognized as a sovereign nation, although the Principality of Sealand is a disputed micronation formed on a discarded sea fort near Suffolk, England.
The closest things to a seastead that have been built so far are large ocean-going ships sometimes called “floating cities”, and smaller floating islands.
At least two people independently began using the term, which is a portmanteau of sea and homesteading: Ken Neumeyer in his book Sailing the Farm (1981) and Wayne Gramlich in his article “Seasteading – Homesteading on the High Seas” (1998).
The Seasteading Institute
ABOUT THE INSTITUTE
The Seasteading Institute is a nonprofit 501(c)(3), working to enable seasteading communities - floating cities - which will allow the next generation of pioneers to test new ideas for government. The most successful can then inspire change in governments around the world.
“Seasteading” may one day assume the pioneering role in underwater colonization that homesteading played in past settlement of the grasslands of the American West.
Congressional Quarterly Weekly Report
Volume 27, Part 2
The report foresaw undersea mining, oil extraction, aquaculture and even recreation and “seasteading” — the leasing of submerged real estate — and undersea nuclear power plants.
Sailing the Farm
By Kenneth Neumeyer
Berkeley, CA: Ten Speed Press
After you have a boat in your possession you can start thinking about how to turn it into a floating homestead — or seastead. Basic requirements are the same everywhere for food, shelter and security. Seasteading has its own peculiarities and with a little ingenuity you should be able to find ways suitable for your own particular situation for fulfilling essential needs.
Peter Thiel Makes Down Payment on Libertarian Ocean Colonies
By Alexis Madrigal Email 05.19.08
With a $500,000 donation from PayPal founder Peter Thiel, a Google engineer and a former Sun Microsystems programmer have launched The Seasteading Institute, an organization dedicated to creating experimental ocean communities “with diverse social, political, and legal systems.”
“Decades from now, those looking back at the start of the century will understand that Seasteading was an obvious step towards encouraging the development of more efficient, practical public-sector models around the world,” Thiel said in a statement.
It might sound like the setting for the videogame Bioshock, but the institute isn’t playing around: It plans to splash a prototype into the San Francisco Bay within the next two years, the first step toward establishing deep-water city-states, or what it calls “seasteads”—homesteads on the high seas.
n + 1
5 June 2013
The Seasteading Institute was founded in 2008 by PayPal founder Peter Thiel and Patri Friedman, a former Google engineer best known for being Milton Friedman’s grandson. Although both men are outspoken libertarians, the nonprofit institute insists that it isn’t politically motivated. It claims to want more space for political experimentation—and the beauty of aquatic governance experiments is that they’re free to fail on their own merits. “If we can solve the engineering challenges of Seasteading, two-thirds of the Earth’s surface becomes open for these political start-ups,” explains Friedman, a self-styled cult leader who’s known to the community as just Patri. The Seasteaders have chosen as their motto “Let a Thousand Nations Bloom’—an apparent spin on “Let a Hundred Flowers Bloom,” a Maoist policy which encouraged dissidents to speak out and then used their views as a pretext to jail them.
Is Seasteading The Future For Libertarians?
by ✿✿✿RoseD1st✿✿✿ Posted September 26, 2013
Seasteading — the concept of creating permanent dwellings at sea — though unlikely viable, is a great example of libertarian activism, and the right way to go about it.
Over the weekend, the Seasteading Institute reached its $20,000 fund-raising goal to design the “world’s first floating city.” Lead by PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel and Patri Friedman (Milton’s grandson), their nonprofit group has been dedicated to exploring the possibility of creating an an independent, autonomous island in international waters, free from U.S. laws and regulations.
Clearing Up 3 Big Misconceptions About Seasteading
NOV. 16, 2013, 8:49 AM
The Seasteading Institute aims to explore new ideas in governance by ultimately setting up micronations in international waters. Outside the bounds of the the 193 countries in the United Nations, a seastead would be free to operate its own government any way its population sees fit. With such radical ambitions, the seasteading concept inspires some polarizing responses. Where some see it as an opportunity for a fresh start, others decry it as a too-lofty Libertarian daydream.
I spoke to Randolph Hencken, Executive Director at The Seasteading Institute, who told me that while “the founders of The Seasteading Institute come from a Libertarian persuasion, the seasteading movement is much broader than that.”
The Independent (UK)
Super-yacht not big enough? ‘Seasteads’ offer libertarians the vision of floating cities for the future
PAUL PEACHEY Thursday 26 December 2013
Available soon, for sale or rent: brand new island with sea views from the terrace, fresh fish daily and swimming pool in the resort hotel. An ideal base for 225 pioneers with £100m-plus to spare and a yearning for a new political and social system.
Not an issue, according to a new design report investigating the feasibility of “seasteads”, communities of like-minded, self-governing individuals established on the high seas, free from what its proponents see as the restrictions of nations, welfare systems and punitive taxes.
The seasteading movement has emerged as a political movement – with nods to climate change and land shortages – to create new water-borne city states. Over 85 pages, a Dutch engineering and urban development company has outlined the feasibility of a floating “village” for 225 permanent residents and 50 hotel guests – a blueprint that the pioneering seasteaders hope will become hundreds of floating petri dishes of social and political experiments.
New York City • Government/Law/Politics/Military • Saturday, December 28, 2013 • Permalink