but would it work?

Many people think that community-run and voluntary schools are impossible on some sort of practical level.  Of course, many people are surprised that Wikipedia manages to work.

Some groups can do some things more efficiently than defined hierarchies.  An article in Yes! about people in Chicago participating in a democratic budgeting process:
On Chicago's far north side, citizens are taking democracy into their own hands. Through the first "participatory budgeting" experiment in the United States, residents of Chicago's 49th Ward have spent the past year deciding how to spend $1.3 million in taxpayer dollars. Over 1,600 community members stepped up to decide on improvements for their neighborhoods, showing how participatory budgeting can pave the way for a new kind of grassroots democracy, in Chicago and beyond.
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